New arrests: Sahar Ghassem Nejad, Nazanin Hassan Nia, and Alireza Saghafi
At 4 a.m. today, plainclothes officers stormed the homes of Sahar Ghassem Nejad and Nazanin Hassan Nia, who belong to families of those executed in the 1980’s, arresting both women. After searching the premises, the officers who had warrants from the Prosecutor’s office took computers and personal items of the two individuals and transferred the women to an unknown location. The only explanation the officers gave families of the arrested individuals was that if they don’t hear anything by Thursday, they can go to the Revolutionary Courts. Sahar and Nazanin did not belong to any political party or group.
Sahar Ghassem Nia was born in 1982 and her father was one of those who were executed in that decade in Iran. Nazanin’s aunt was also in prison for some time in the 1980’s. Her arrest took place a few weeks after the arrests of Omid Montazeri and his mother, Mahin Fahimi. Mr. Montazeri’s father was also executed in 1988, along with a large group of political prisoners. (This news item will be updated as new information develops.)
Iranian news web sites report on the arrest of Alireza Saghafi, member of the Iranian Writers’ Association, and a labor rights defender. This journalist and author was arrested on Tuesday, February 2, 2010, after appearing at the Ministry of Information. After Reza Khandan, he is the second member of the Iranian Writers’ Association to be arrested over the past few days. Previously, Alireza Saghafi and his son, Mohsen Saghafi, had been arrested during the International Labor Day ceremonies at Park Laleh in Tehran, and released on bail after a few weeks.