Human Rights Lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh Arrested

Sep 5, 20100 comments

Human rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh

Human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh. Image source

Nasrin Sotoudeh, a lawyer who began her career working with The Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child was arrested yesterday (September 4, 2010). Sotoudeh is one of many human rights lawyers who has been arrested and persecuted by the Islamic Republic of Iran. In recent weeks, her offices have been raided, and she has been called in to Evin Prison for “interviews” with Intelligence officers. A few days before her arrest, the human rights lawyer was charged with “undermining national security and disseminating propaganda against the Islamic establishment.” She is not the first human rights lawyer to be arrested by the IRI. “The arrests of human rights lawyers represent an effort to discourage opposition on a general level. On a personal level, they want to punish individuals who expose the shortcomings of the Islamic Republic,” says a source who worked in the human rights office of a Western embassy in Iran. The source continued, “The IRI is sending the message, don’t defend those we have arrested for political reason. Don’t even mention the term human rights.” Materially, human rights lawyers cannot do much to defend their clients because they cannot read the files. The cases against their clients are largely false and trumped up, which makes the defense superfluous.The most important act a human rights lawyers can take is to raise awareness about the cases they take on, bringing them to the attention of the international community and to the public. “When we asked activists what we could do to help them, they always said, ‘Make as much noise as possible.’ If they are arrested it may count against them, but it prevents them from being forgotten.” More: RFE: Iran’s Human Rights Lawyers Increasingly Facing Their Own Days In Court International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran: Arrests and Convictions of Rights Activists and Lawyers Escalate Million Signature Campaign: نسرین ستوده پس از مراجعه به دادسرای اوین هنوز برنگشته است Payvand: Nasrin Sotoudeh: The Ardent, Passionate and Dedicated Attorney at Law