Narges Mohammadi after Release: “Separation from My Sick Toddler Was Beyond Any Torture.”
Narges Mohammad, Deputy Director and Spokesperson for the Defenders of Human Rights Center (DHRC) was released on Friday, 2 July 2009. One day after her release from prison, in an interview with the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, Mohammadi, who is a winner of the Alexander Langer International Foundation Award, talked to the Campaign in detail about her arrest and charges. She told the Campaign that she was informed of the charge of “congregation and mutiny against the regime” four days after her arrest. “I am a human rights activist and my activities are within the legal framework of the Islamic Republic of Iran and with commitment to the laws of Islamic Republic of Iran. I am not a member of any political group. I am only a civil activist and a defender of human rights,” said Mohammadi.
“On Thursday, 10 June 2010, at 8:00 p.m. I came home with my daughter from the hospital. She had had surgery and wasn’t feeling very well. I was tending the operation stitches on her stomach at 10:00 p.m. when the door bell rang. I asked, ‘Who is it?’ and they said, ‘We are the police, come downstairs, we need to ask you a question.’ It was nighttime and I was in my nightgown, so I asked whether I should get dressed formally. They said: ‘No, we just have a question, come downstairs.’ When I went downstairs, six forces entered the house. I didn’t object because I had my toddler with me. Unfortunately, they presented me with a letter, which was neither a warrant for my arrest, nor one for searching my home. The letter was not even issued by the Judiciary. It was around 12 June [last year’s election anniversary], so the text of the letter basically said that if during this period any riots, covert activities, or suspicious things are noticed, they have the right to enter and investigate. This is how they arrested me and transferred me to Ward 209 [of Evin Prison]. I spent 22 days there,” Mohammadi told the Campaign.
“I am a mother. I have two three-year-old toddlers. My child was sick and had just been released from the hospital. Even if you take a mother to heaven, separating her from her child is grave agony for her. I was a mother. I didn’t expect them to separate me at 12 midnight from my sick child who had just had an operation, while my child had her arms around my neck and was crying. Aside from political issues, what matters to me is the humanity and morality of this. Separation from my children is something beyond torture. I think this was the worst torture I have ever endured in my life,” Narges Mohammadi added.
Narges Mohammadi was born in 1972. She is a human rights activist, a journalist, Deputy Director of Defenders of Human Rights Center, Operations Manager of Iran Peace Council, and former member of the Iran Alumni Association’s Policy Council. She was arrested on 10 June 2010 and was released on 1 July 2010. Narges Mohammadi was barred from traveling to Guatemala on 7 May 2010.