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Abbas Amir-Entezam, One of Iran’s Most Prominent Political Prisoners, Dies at the Age of 86

Abbas Amir-Entezam, One of Iran’s Most Prominent Political Prisoners, Dies at the Age of 86

 

 

July 12, 2018

Abbas Amir-Entezam, one of the country’s most prominent political prisoners, died today in Tehran at the age of 86. Amir-Entezam, who served as the spokesperson for Prime Minister Bazargan’s Provisional Government and as Iran’s ambassador to Scandinavian countries, was arrested and charged with espionage after the 1979 takeover of the US Embassy. He later recounted that his official correspondence with foreign governments was used as evidence against him. Amir-Entezam was initially sentenced to death, but his sentence was reduced to life imprisonment at the urging of Prime Minister Bazargan, who insisted on his innocence.

Amir-Entezam was released in 1998 but was arrested again after an interview in which he strongly criticized Asadollah Lajevardi, the notorious Tehran Prosecutor who had been responsible for executing numerous political prisoners in the 1980s. Amir-Entezam was arrested again in 2003 after calling for a referendum on Iran’s constitution. He was eventually released for medical reasons, but he was not cleared of the charges against him. Amir-Entezam’s request for a new and fair trial was never accepted.

Amir-Entezam’s perseverance through his long years of imprisonment is an inspiration for many Iranians who seek freedom and justice.  

“Abbas Amir-Entezam was not only the Mandela of Iran but also a close family friend whose wife and children paid a heavy price for his heroic idealism and integrity. He remains, even in his absence, an inspiring symbol of human dignity and resilience against oppression,” said Payam Akhavan, IHRDC’s co-founder and of member of Board of Directors.

 

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