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A New Wave of Arrests in Iran

A New Wave of Arrests in Iran

(February 1, 2018) Reports from Iran indicate that intelligence officials arrested at least five activists today. Behnam Mousivand, Saeed Eqbal, Mahmoud Masoumi, Shima Babaei and Daryoush Zand were arrested in the latest wave of arrests of Iranian activists. These arrests have occurred a month after nation-wide protests in late December and early January and as calls for fresh protests were made on social media.


Several of the detained activists were previously arrested by the Iranian government. Behnam Mousivand served a one-year prison sentence for the charge of “disseminating propaganda” against the Islamic Republic. He was released from prison in June 2017.  

Shima Babaei was arrested in June 2016 and released after a few days on bail. She was reportedly charged with “disseminating propaganda” and “conspiring” against the Islamic Republic. Her husband, Daryoush Zand was also previously detained in June 2016.

Mahmoud Masoumi was previously arrested on national security charges as well as the charges of “insulting sacred Islamic values” and “insulting the founder and the leader of the Islamic Republic.” Masoumi was subsequently sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment.

Separately, the Iranian government announced that it arrested 29 women for removing their Islamic veils in public. Many women are participating in peaceful protests against compulsory hijab by removing their headscarves in public and posting pictures and videos of themselves on social media.

Under Article 638 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code appearing in public without the Islamic veil is punishable by a fine or a prison sentence ranging from ten days to two months.


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Behnam Mousivand, Saeed Eqbal, Mahmoud Masoumi, Shima Babaei, Daryoush Zand, Arrest