Kurdish activist suffers second heart attack in prison


Reports have emerged indicating that Mohammad Sadiq Kaboudvand, journalist and founder of Human Rights Organization of Kurdistan, has suffered a second heart attack on the 17th of December while in prison.

Kaboudvand was charged with “acting against national security by establishing an illegal group”, and subsequently sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. He’s currently serving his sentence in the notorious Evin Prison, under extremely harsh conditions.

Speaking to the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, Parinaz Baghbani Hassani – Kabouvand’s wife – had the following to state:

Kaboudvand’s wife, Parinaz Baghbani Hassani, told the Campaign that she last talked to Kaboudvand by phone on 16 December. Kaboudvand said he was seriously ill with a kidney infection and had contracted the flu. On the morning of 17 December, Hassani received word from inside the prison that Kaboudvand had suffered a heart attack in the middle of the night. Kaboudvand also suffered a heart attack on 19 May 2008.

During their last phone conversation on 16 December, Kaboudvand told his wife that medical doctors at Evin Prison are concerned about his high blood pressure, kidney infection, and prostate condition. His wife told the Campaign that Kaboudvand’s family has a history of heart conditions. Both of Kaboudvand’s parents died of heart attacks and his siblings have also suffered heart attacks, she said.

According to Baghbani, prison doctors have written to judicial authorities stating that Kaboudvand is in urgent need of specialist medical care outside of the prison, but the authorities have not taken any action.

Baghbani also told the Campaign that as winter is beginning in Tehran, Evin Prison’s heating system is malfunctioning and prisoners have complained of exposure to severe cold.

The refusal to grant Kaboudvand much needed access to health care goes against Article 229 of the Prison Regulations, which stipulates that “a prisoner suffering from a serious medical condition whose condition cannot be treated inside prison, or whose condition will worsen if they stay in prison, should be released by the prison authorities for one month’s medical leave, renewable, on the recommendation of a doctor and with the agreement of the Prison Director.”