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Iran ‘torturing’ prize-winning activist Narges Mohammadi: Amnesty

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Iran is subjecting the prize-winning rights activist Narges Mohammadi to torture by denying her proper healthcare in a reprisal for her campaigning, Amnesty International said on Wednesday.

Mohammadi is held in the notorious Qarchak women's prison southeast of Tehran, whose conditions have long alarmed rights campaigners.

Her husband Taghi Rahmani, who is based in Paris, had on social media this week accused the prison authorities of deliberately withholding medication sent by her family to treat a lung condition.

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“Iran's authorities are torturing human rights defender Narges Mohammadi in prison, including by intentionally denying her adequate healthcare and refusing to provide her with medication in reprisal for her human rights work,” the Amnesty International rights group said.

Amnesty added that Mohammadi, who suffers from lung and heart conditions, had been hospitalised on June 23 after experiencing shortness of breath and an irregular heartbeat.

Since her return to prison from hospital, prison authorities “have been denying Narges Mohammadi some of her required medication.”

Mohammadi is currently serving a prison sentence of 10 years and eight months on charges from two separate cases including spreading propaganda against the regime, according to Amnesty.

She was sentenced to eight years and over 70 lashes on national security charges in January and is also serving another sentence of two-and-a-half years dating back to 2021.

Amnesty also expressed alarm that in recent weeks there have been reports of “overflowing sewage” at Qarchak, “putting prisoners at risk of disease”.

A colleague of Nobel Peace Prize-winning campaigner Shirin Ebadi, who now lives outside Iran, Mohammadi has campaigned for justice for protesters killed in a crackdown on November 2019 demonstrations.

She has won numerous international prizes in recognition for her work including in 2011 the annual Per Anger Prize issued by the Swedish government.

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