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Activist's Twitter account unavailable after tweets about Iranian TV reporter

Published: Updated:

The Twitter account of an Iranian labor rights activist became unavailable hours after she revealed that a state TV reporter was heavily involved in interrogating activists.

24-year-old Sepideh Gholian tweeted on Wednesday that Ameneh Sadat Zabihpour - a reporter for the state-run Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) - had been present during her interrogations.

Gholian said that “after hours of physical and psychological torture,” Zabihpour presented her and other labor rights activists with a pre-prepared text for them to read in front of camera as “confessions.”

In 2018, Iranian authorities arrested a group of labor rights activists, including Gholian. Iran’s state TV broadcasted a mini documentary on the activists after their arrest, claiming they had links to “foreign groups.”

The activists were shown confessing in front of camera. Gholian says the confessions were forced and extracted from her and the other activists under torture.

Gholian also tweeted that she is looking to file a complaint against Zabihpour.

Gholian’s Twitter account has been unavailable since her tweets about Zabihpour. Activists fear that she may have been arrested again.

About a month ago, another IRIB reporter was accused of being involved in interrogating activists and their families.

Ramin Seyed Emami, son of Kavous Seyed Emami, an Iranian-Canadian environmental activist and university professor who was arrested in 2018 and later died under suspicious circumstances in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison, had said that IRIB reporter Ali Rezvani had been at his parents’ house along with a group of agents from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) intelligence service.

Ramin Seyed Emami said that Rezvani and the IRGC intelligence agents entered the basement of his parents’ house with some boxes to “stage the scene.”

Emami added that Rezvani’s behaviour during the interrogation of his mother was such that his mother had to be taken to the hospital.