Jailed Activist Diagnosed with Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis
Family Hopes Atena Daemi Will Be Released on Medical Grounds
A doctor at Evin Prison has diagnosed imprisoned children’s rights and civil activist Atena Daemi, 27, with having signs of multiple sclerosis, her mother, Massoumeh Nemati, told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran. She expressed hope that under the circumstances, Daemi would be freed.
“Initially when she was detained, Atena had constant headaches such that she could not sleep without tranquilizers. Then her vision became weaker. Now she says her eyes suddenly go dark and physically she’s very weak and suffers from amnesia as well. The doctor at Evin said these are signs of multiple sclerosis,” Nemati said.
“The Evin doctor said Atena should immediately have an MRI and be checked by a neurologist. The prosecutor agreed with our request to dispatch her to the hospital and now we are following up on it to transfer her to the hospital,” Daemi’s mother added.
In May 2015, Atena Daemi was sentenced to 14 years in prison – seven years for “assembly and collusion and propaganda against the state,” three years for “insulting the Supreme Leader and the sacred,” and four years for “concealing crime evidence.”
“I ask the Judiciary authorities to free my daughter,” Daemi’s mother told the Campaign. “She has not done anything to deserve 14 years in prison. She is only 27 and has become ill in prison. How is she going to survive all these years in prison? It has been 11 months since she was sent to prison and she has not been allowed furlough even for one day.”
Massoumeh Nemati also denied reports that Daemi was suffering from breast cancer. She said her daughter’s hormonal imbalance during a check-up for lymphatic problems had led to the false reports. “She does not have cancer, thank God,” she said.
In an earlier interview, Ms. Nemati told the Campaign that her daughter was not a political activist.
“She was not a member of any political parties or groups, and has never engaged in political activities. My daughter is not a criminal who should be serving 14 or 7, or any other number of years in prison. She is now 27, and is in poor psychological condition. How much longer should she stay in prison? I request her release. If her case is reviewed with justice, she should not spend another day in prison,” Daemi’s mother added.
Atena Daemi was arrested on October 21, 2014, primarily as a result of her peaceful participation in gatherings against the death penalty and in support of the children of Kobani in Syria. She has been in Evin Prison ever since. She was charged with “insulting the Supreme Leader and the sacred” because of several jokes and protest songs found on her cell phone, and of “concealing crime evidence” because during her interrogations she was unable to provide the password to the Facebook page of one of her imprisoned friends.