Iran: Human Rights Lawyer Abdolfattah Soltani arbitrarily detained | Letter

To: Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei; President Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

From: Hugh Gwillim

Re: Request for Furlough for Human Rights Lawyer Abdolfattah Soltani 

Date: March 26, 2013

Lawyers’ Rights Watch of Canada (LRWC) requests that an appropriate bail for furlough be set for Abdolfattah Soltani. Further, LRWC submits that the imprisonment of Abdolfattah Soltani is arbitrary and is an attempt to silence his legitimate human rights activities.

Mr. Soltani is a prominent human rights lawyer in Iran and is a founding member of the Defenders of Human Rights Centre. He was originally arrested in September of 2010 and sentenced in January of 2012 to 18 years imprisonment, exile to Borazjan, and a 20-year ban on practicing law. Upon appeal Mr. Soltani’s imprisonment has been reduced to 13 years.

LRWC has been informed that Mr. Soltani has been granted a short furlough from his imprisonment and that his bail has been set at over 1 billion toman. LRWC submits that this bail is excessively high and has been set to prevent Mr. Soltani from taking any furlough granted to him. LRWC requests that a bail be set for Mr. Soltani that is appropriate to his length of imprisonment.

Further, Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada requests that the arbitrary imprisonment of Mr. Soltani cease and the he be released immediately. We urge you to provide a response.

Write to LRWC by mail, e-mail or fax to advise us of your actions to do the following:

  • Allow Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani to be released on furlough by setting a bail appropriate to his length of imprisonment;
  • Guarantee in all circumstances the physical and psychological integrity of Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani;
  • Drop all charges against Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani and release him immediately and unconditionally as his detention is arbitrary since it only aims at sanctioning his human rights activities;
  • Allow Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani to return to his work as a lawyer; and
  • Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Iran.