Children’s Rights Activist Charged with “Acting against National Security”
Civil and children’s rights activist Atena Daemi has been formally charged, after six months of “temporary detention” in Evin Prison, a source told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.
“Atena was charged with ‘propaganda against the state,’ ‘acting against national security,’ and ‘insulting the Supreme Leader and Islam,’” the source said. “All charges are based on her posts in Facebook and her participation in gatherings, including those in support of the children of Kobane [in Syria].”
In court presided over by Judge Moghisseh on March 7, Daemi denied the charges and her lawyer objected to the evidence as unreasonable.
The prosecution is basing its charges on Atena’s posts on Facebook which express opposition to forced hijab and capital punishment as well as her references to listening to the protest songs of Shahin Najafi.
“Her file also includes an allegation that she took part in a gathering to protest Reyhaneh Jabbari’s execution, even though Atena was in jail when Reyhaneh was hanged and was not able to participate in any gatherings,” the source told the Campaign.
Daemi, who worked at the Revolution Sports Club in Tehran, was arrested on October 21, 2014, by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards and has been in detention in Evin Prison ever since.
Daemi’s lawyer has again requested the judge to set bail for her release after six months of detention so that she can spend time with her family.
“Arena is suffering from severe headaches and is not in a good mental state. She needs to be released on bail so that she can recover a bit at home,” the source told the Campaign.
Her mother, Masoumeh Nemati, told the Campaign that Atena organized art classes for child street workers and protested against the condition of children in Kobane and Gaza.
“I hope the authorities will agree to her release on bail. My daughter has not had any political activities. Her only activities were in support of abandoned children and women,” she said.