E-letter to UN Special Rapporteur: Urge Iran to Stop its Assault on the Country’s Artists

Jul 21, 20110 comments

Updated 7/27/2011 Pegah Ahangarani and Mahnaz Mohammadi have been released on bail. The e-letter has been updated to reflect these new developments.

>> Send an e-letter about Iran’s assault on artists

Background Send an e-letter to Iran’s special rapporteur, the UN High Commissoner for Human Rights, and the UN’s Secretary-General to express your concern regarding the intensifying crackdown on Iran’s artists. In the last few weeks, the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) has arbitrarily detained several actresses, directors, and photojournalists. Two actresses – Ms. Marzieh Vafamehr and Ms. Pegah Ahangarani – were arrested on unspecified charges. In June, two more were detained: Ms. Mahnaz Mohammadi, a documentary filmmaker and women’s rights activist, and photojournalist Ms. Maryam Majd.The reasons for their detentions remain unclear, though it appears to be part of Iran’s ongoing, systematic crackdown on artists, filmmakers, writers, human rights defenders, and activists. The right to free expression put forth by Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights notes that “everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression” including the right and freedom to “hold opinions with interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media…” If the IRI has detained these four simply for free expression, it is imperative the international community demands their immediate and unconditional releases. Urge UN officials to call on the Iranian authorities to release all prisoners of conscience held solely for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, immediately and unconditionally and to respect the right to free expression, as defined under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Iran is a state party. Additional Information http://radiozamaneh.com/english/content/film-group-pursue-case-detained-actresses-director http://radiozamaneh.com/english/content/iranian-actress-held-questioning-weeks http://radiozamaneh.com/english/content/arrest-warrant-renewed-jailed-iranian-actress http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2011/07/201171912523143252.html http://www.iranhumanrights.org/2011/06/maryam-majd-arrested/ http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jun/30/iranian-filmmaker-mahnaz-mohammadi-detained http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/ http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/MDE13/068/2011/en/b4568b72-eb26-41bb-8f80-40f5107f5477/mde130682011en.html