United for Iran is an independent nonprofit based in the San Francisco Bay Area working for civil liberties in Iran. We achieve our mission by improving human rights conditions, increasing the capacity of civil society, and engaging citizens through technology. We envision an Iran where the liberties and human rights of every citizen are honored. An Iran where ordinary citizens are empowered and engaged in public affairs. An Iran that is vibrant, open, and democratic. We believe that defending human rights is the responsibility of us all, and everyone has a role to play.

We run campaigns that raise public awareness.
Our campaigns lead to direct pressure on the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) to spare lives, release prisoners, stop prosecutions of people who post something on Facebook, show up at a rally, or otherwise exercise their right to have a voice in the country they love.
Iran Prison Atlas
We maintain an atlas of Iran’s political prisoners, prison systems, and judges.
The atlas, with its 2000+ records, shines a bright light on Iran’s judiciary system by making sure that every time a courtroom is used to take the life or the liberty of someone who simply spoke out in defense of Iranian citizens, the world will know.
Civil Society Support
We support the movement inside Iran.
The thousands of people who are willing to risk their freedom need support from the outside. Our network of activists, organizations, and supporters worldwide collects and shares best practices and strategies from activists around the world, providing strategic and organizational support to people inside the country.
Citizen Engagement Through Technology
We build technologies.
As Iranians gain access to new technologies, we create opportunities to break the walls of censorship, isolation, and oppression. We focus on mobile applications that are secure, simple, and robust that allow people in country to organize, to communicate, and to raise their voices.


Our team of 10 includes campaigners, do-good technologists, and researchers primarily based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
We also work with dozens of consultants and volunteers from around the world.


2009 Global Day of Action

Heavy-hearted by violence in the aftermath of the Iranian presidential elections, United for Iran founder Firuzeh Mahmoudi organized a global rally to draw attention to the tragedy unfolding in Iran. On July 25, 2009, tens of thousands of people in 110 cities around the world take to the streets in support of Iranian citizens and their quest for rights.What began as an idea turned into history’s biggest day of global solidarity for the people of Iran. United for Iran evolves from a commitment to build on this day.


2010 Political Prisoners Awareness Day

United for Iran launches a campaign to highlight cases of 50 political prisoners. People in 90 cities around the world “adopt” political prisoners, organize rallies, speak to the media and lead their own petition and postcard campaigns. Thousands of new people are engaged in support of Iranian political prisoners.


2011 Azadi Music

Azadi: Songs of Freedom for Iran is released featuring musical tributes to Iranian citizens from artists all over the world. The artists speak from direct experience with oppression and resistance, addressing Iran’s current conditions, imprisonment, and the Arab Spring.


2012 Collaboration with United Nations

United for Iran’s Puyan Mahmoudian speaks at the 21st session of the United Nation’s Human Rights Council. United for Iran maintains close ties with the United Nations and other international organizations and human rights bodies. United for Iran’s Iran Prison Atlas is quoted extensively by UN Special Rapporteur for Iran, Ahmed Shaheed.


2013 Zahra Runs for President

United for Iran joins forces with the author of the New York Times bestselling graphic novel Zahra’s Paradise to nominate Zahra –– a fictional mourning mother whose son was killed by authorities in 2009 –– as a 2013 presidential candidate. Zahra’s campaign focuses on human rights, receives wide media coverage and has grassroots supporters from over 20 countries. Islamic Republic media disavows Zahra’s campaign, calling United for Iran’s Director Firuzeh Mahmoudi an “anti-revolutionary fugitive.”


2015 Campaign to Free Bahareh

Advocating the release of political prisoners is central to our vision of an Iran that honors the human rights of every citizen. In 2015, United for Iran helped organize a campaign to free imprisoned student and women's rights activist Bahareh Hedayat. To date, the petition has received over 129,000 signatures on change.org.


2015 Safe Activism launches

United for Iran partners with 30 former Iranian political prisoners and activists to produce the Safe Activism booklet — a guide for Iranian political and civic activists to prevent or mitigate the impacts of arrest and imprisonment.


2016 A More Comprehensive Iran Prison Atlas

United for Iran maintains a comprehensive and up-to-date record of Iranian political prisoners. In 2016, we expanded the Iran Prison Atlas to include related Iranian prisons and judges. In total, the Iran Prison Atlas includes over 2,000 records, shining a bright light on Iran’s judiciary system by making sure that every time a courtroom is used to take the life or the liberty of someone who simply exercised their basic rights, the injustice is documented for the world to know.


Our Board of Directors provides strategic, programmatic, and financial oversight ensuring United for Iran is healthy, transparent, and responsible. Community Advisory Board members help us think through our challenges and strategies and expand our network. Both boards also play a lead role in fundraising plans and activities.

Learn more

In the media

United for Iran Welcomes the Landmark Nuclear Deal

Iran, the United States and other world powers reached a historic accord on Tuesday to curb Iranian nuclear programs. After 20 months of intense negotiations, the parties agreed that Iran will significantly reduce its stockpile of enriched nuclear material and cease further enrichment for at least 10 years. In return major economic sanctions will be lifted in phases, effectively releasing billions of dollars in frozen Iranian assets. United for Iran’s Executive Director Firuzeh Mahmoudi issued the following statement:

We have to stop nuclear negotiations from overshadowing Iran’s human rights record

See the original article in The Guardian here. Written by Firuzeh Mahmoudi and Mahdieh Javid. With progress being made in the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program, it’s time for a new conversation about Iran – one about the country’s dismal human rights record.

Iran Sanctions Eased, But Pinch Still Felt

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The sanctions relief offered to Iran by the U.S. and five world powers has begun to get the gears of commerce slowly turning again in an economy that remains in shambles. The Obama administration estimates relief from some sanctions in exchange for a temporary pause in Iran’s nuclear enrichment program will amount to just $7 billion. That’s a meager amount for the economy of a nation of nearly 80 million people — it’s less than one month’s worth of Iran’s oil production

A Female President of Iran?

CNN’s Christiane Amanpour covers United for Iran’s Vote for Zahra campaign. http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/world/2013/06/14/exp-women-iran-amanpour.cnn.html

‘De enige échte kandidaat in Iran is een stripfiguur’

Er zijn alleen maar mannen-met-baarden waar de Iraniërs vrijdag voor kunnen stemmen tijdens de presidentsverkiezingen: vijf conservatieve heren en één man die een beetje hervormingsgezinder zou kunnen zijn. En dan is er Zahra, een 52-jarige vrouw uit Teheran, die zich als enige kandidaat tegen de mullahs uitspreekt; ze wil politieke gevangenen vrijlaten en ‘de waardigheid’ van de Iraanse burgers als uitgangspunt nemen. Maar Zahra is een stripfiguur.

The positive change we seek is only as strong and lasting as the network we build along the way. Below are our partners – organizations we work with to campaign, research, and build technology. Most importantly, we provide moral support for each other and our community as we work for big change.
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