Four women journalists and activists released from prison on bail

By The Free Iranian Staff
top left: Sepideh Gholian, right: Atefeh Rangreez. Bottomw left: Sanaz Allahyari, right: Marzieh Amiri.
top left: Sepideh Gholian, right: Atefeh Rangreez. Bottomw left: Sanaz Allahyari, right: Marzieh Amiri.

Four women journalists and political activists were released from Tehran’s notorious Evin and Qarachak prisons on bail on Saturday, October 26th. The freed activists have all received long prison sentences, but they have appealed the verdicts. Reports indicate that they were each released on bail; some up to $130,000 USD which is an enormous amount for average Iranians.

Sepideh Gholian was the first to be released on bail from Qarchak Prison. Gholian’s bail has been reported by some sources to be one and a half billion tomans or $450,000 USD, which will be held over until the appeals court.  Gholian was arrested last year in the Haft-Tapeh Sugar Cane Complex protests. During her last days in detention, Gholian had gone on a hunger strike that she ended the day before her release. She explained: “I stopped eating food and drinking water. They won’t stop harassing me and my family. I am tired. How much can I take? I want a delegation from judiciary to investigate the situation in Qarchak prison.”

Atefeh Rangreez, was arrested on International Workers’ Day in front of the Islamic Parliament (Majles). News of her release on bail was reported on Saturday, October 26th.  

Mullah Judge Mohammad Moghiseh
Mullah Judge Mohammad Moghiseh

Mullah Judge Mohammad Moghiseh, in part 28 of the Islamic Revolutionary court charged her with “assembly, conspiracy against national security and disturbing social order,” for which she was given 11 years and six months in prison, plus 74 lashes.

Sanaz Allahyari, an imprisoned journalist was another of the four women whose release from prison, was announced on Saturday, October 26th. She was arrested last winter along with her husband, Amir-Hossein Mohammadi and fellow journalist Amir Amir-Gholi, while covering the workers protests for the University Students publication, Gaam.

Marzieh Amiri, who was arrested while preparing a reportage on the Workers’ protest, was the final female activist to be released on Saturday, October 26th.  She too was among the journalists who was covering the May 1st Workers protest in front of the Islamic Parliament and was arrested during an attack by the Islamic security forces.

Esmail Bakhshi and Asal Mohammadi
Esmail Bakhshi and Asal Mohammadi

Esmail Bakhshi and Asal Mohammadi, two of the leading labor activists who were arrested last December, as well as a number of others, who were arrested during the International Labor Day protest, remain in custody.

Reports indicated that both Esmail Bakhsi and Asal Mohammdi were tortured when they were initially arrested in December 2018.