Kurdish Lawyer Sentenced to Prison in Iran


Masoud Shamsinejad

Masoud Shamsinejad, a Kurdish human rights lawyer, appeared on May 7 or 8, 2014 before a court in Iran on charges of membership of an illegal political group and propaganda against the state, writes International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran (ICHRI).

Shamsinejad was arrested on May 9, 2013. A source told the ICHRI that “the Intelligence Ministry wants to accuse him of supporting Kurdish [armed] groups because he was a lawyer for Kurdish political activists.” Shamsinejad had also been reporting about prison conditions in Iran to Ahmed Shaheed, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran; an act that has been deemed “propaganda against the state”. Shamsinejad was released on bail in July, 2013.

On May 19, 2014, a verdict was announced and Shamsinejad was sentenced to 4 months in prison.

Shamsinejad is a former professor of two universities in Urmîye and has as a human rights lawyer represented Kurdish political prisoners, among who were Habibollah Golparipour, Ali Afshari, and Razgar (Habib) Afshari.

Ali Afshari, Habib Afshari and their brother, Jafar Afshari were arrested on separate occasions between November, 2009 and December, 2010.

Activists Habib and Ali Afshari were declared guilty of “corruption on earth” and “acting against God’s will” by the Iranian revolutionary court of Mahabad. On January 16, 2012, they were sentenced to be executed. They have since April 23 been on hunger strike, demanding a fair re-trial. Jafar Afshari who was sentenced to 5 years prison is also on hunger strike. The 3 brothers have since their arrest in 2009-2010 been on hunger strike several times.

Ali Afshari and Habib Afshari