Diplomacy

Iran Arrests Leading Rights Activist, One Week After FM Says No One Jailed for Opinions

Narges Mohammadi, a leading Iranian human rights activist, was arrested on Tuesday. The arrest comes after Iran’s foreign minister and lead nuclear negotiator, Mohammad Javad Zarif, said that “the Islamic Republic doesn’t imprison journalists or dissidents over their views” last week.

The New York Times reported:

Ms. Mohammadi is one of the best-known activists remaining in Iran.

For more than a decade, Ms. Mohammadi, 43, has worked with the Defenders of Human Rights Center. The group was founded by Shirin Ebadi, who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003. Political pressure forced Ms. Ebadi to leave Iran, and she now lives in Switzerland.

This week, Ms. Mohammadi, 43, who has been sentenced to prison terms on multiple occasions for her human rights work, was scheduled to appear in court in connection with a new case filed against her by the Iranian authorities. A request for a delay in that case was denied, leaving her lawyer no time to study the charges against her, Baharnews reported.

Zarif was derided by Iranian activists as “Pinocchio” for his assertion that no one in Iran is punished for his beliefs. He was quoted last week in an interview with Charlie Rose.

[Photo: Freedom Messenger / YouTube ]