Masoud Kazemi is the Second Journalist to Be Arrested in Tehran Within Two Weeks
Unidentified security agents detained journalist Masoud Kazemi in Tehran on November 5, 2018, making him the second known case of a journalist being arrested in the Iranian capital within the last two weeks.
“Bail has been set at 250 million tomans [approximately $59,340 USD], which I hope his family will be able to come up with,” his attorney, Ali Mojtahedzadeh, tweeted on November 6.
“Detention without prior warning is only permissible in very limited cases for people accused of serious or dangerous crimes but unfortunately, it is repeatedly happening to journalists and becoming a normal pattern,” he added.
Mojtahedzadeh did not identify the arresting authority or discuss whether charges have been filed.
Kazemi’s fiancé, Shima Tadrisi, tweeted on November 6 that neighbors who witnessed Kazemi’s arrest told her that several individuals entered his home before noon and took him away along with his laptop and phone.
On October 25, Iranian journalist Pouyan Khoshhal was also arrested in Tehran and charged with a crime that could carry the death penalty for using the word “demise” instead of “martyrdom” while referring to a Shia imam.
Prior to his arrest, Khoshhal was fired from the reformist Ebtekar newspaper, which issued an apology instead of defending the journalist.
On August 19, Amir Mohammad Hossein Miresmaili, a former journalist and satirist for the Jahan Sana’at (Industry World) newspaper in Iran, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for allegedly disparaging a Shia imam in a tweet aimed at criticizing an ultra-conservative cleric in Iran.
Miresmaili was also banned from media activities and prohibited from traveling abroad for two years. He has been free on bail since August 10 awaiting the result of his appeal.