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Witness Statement of Nasser Golparipour

Nasser Golparipour, a former IRGC member and the father of Kurdish Iranian death row prisoner Habibollah Golparipour, discusses his son's case.

Name: Nasser Golparipour

Place of Birth  Sanandaj, Iran 

Occupation  Shopkeeper and retired Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps member  

Interviewing Organization: Iran Human Rights Documentation Center (IHRDC)

Date of Interview:  December 19, 2011

Interviewer: IHRDC Staff

This statement was prepared pursuant to an interview with Nasser Golparipour. It was approved by Nasser Golparipour on 12/19/2011 There are 14 paragraphs in the statement.

The views and opinions of the witness expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center.

1. I am Nasser Golparipour, the father of political prisoner Habibollah Golparipour, who has been sentenced to death. My son has been in solitary confinement in Mahabad Central Prison for 14 days [at the time of this interview].

2. My son was a civic activist. His work dealt with books and newspapers. A person who works with books and newspapers will [usually] have a political case brought against him if he goes to prison.

3. In his case file, it is written that he is connected to the PJAK. He has denied everything, however. He has never taken part in any armed operations. Habib was a high school student before his arrest.

4. I was a supporter of the [Islamic] Revolution. I served in the [Islamic Revolutionary Guards] Corps [IRGC] for 22 years. I fought with the IRGC in the trenches at the war front for seven years during the [Iran-Iraq] War. I have never collaborated with counterrevolutionaries [those opposed to the Islamic Republic].

5. Even now, if a foreign country were to encroach on an inch of my homeland [Iran], I would be prepared to give my life for my country. The soil of my homeland is a matter of personal honor to me. It’s true that they are currently detaining my son, but I hold nothing against my country.


Arrest and Detention of Habibollah Golparipour

6. This was the first time that Habibollah had been arrested. He had no prior criminal record. He has been detained for nearly three years now. He was arrested in late September two years ago, but I don’t remember the exact day.

7. My son’s lawyer read his case file and told me that my son was arrested while in possession of several books with other people whom he had accompanied to Mahabad. [Apparently] someone by the name of Seyyed Salaam gave him up.

8. He [Habibollah Golparipour] was in the detention center of the Intelligence Office [of Mahabad] for the first five months [of his detention]. During those five months, he was forbidden all visitation and we had no idea as to his whereabouts. Ultimately, after five months [of uncertainty] we obtained some information from him. When they transferred him to Mahabad Central Prison, he contacted us himself and we learned about his situation. Before that we received no news about him. 

9. I went to the prison and met with some prison officials named Mr. Bahraini and Mr. Fathi and they indicated that my son had caused disturbances in prison. They [the prison authorities] send agents provocateurs into the prison—who subsequently get into fights with the prisoners. This ultimately led to my son and four others to be sent to solitary confinement.

10. We visit him in prison every month, but during the last fourteen days, they have imposed [further] sanctions on him, so we have not seen him. They’ve said that they may even extend this [refusal of visitation].

11. I don’t know any of Habibollah’s fellow prisoners. He has been imprisoned alone [in solitary confinement]. We have had to endure these misfortunes for several years simply for the crime of being Kurdish. While he is in [Mahabad] Central Prison, the possibility of visitation exists every day. His attorneys can also see him whenever they like.


Prosecution of Habibollah Golparipour

12. My son’s attorneys are Mr. Khalil Bahramian and Mr. Ehsan Mojtavi. My son sent a letter to the head of the judiciary, the Supreme Leader, and the National Security Council wherein he discussed everything [that has happened to him].

13. When they gave him the death penalty, I made a plea for clemency for which I have still not received a response. The judge in his case was Ali Khodadadi. I told him that my son was not an armed [dissident], and that when he was arrested, he did not have any weapons on his person. He didn’t even have a nail cutter or a knife with him. He only had books in his possession when they arrested him. [Khodadadi] told me that if they only arrested him with a book, then there wouldn’t be any problems and that [Habibollah] wouldn’t be detained for more than two hours. But then he sentenced him to death.  They [the authorities] wrote in his file that when he was arrested he had some books, a few periodicals, a cell phone and nothing else.

14. I even told the judge that if my child has made mistakes that merit punishment [the judge] should not penalize him harshly; instead, he should show him what to do to make up for his mistakes. 

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