2007: Iran: Women writers

Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic
His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei,
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Shoahada Street, Qom, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email:  info@leader.ir , istiftaa@wilayah.org

Head of the Judiciary
His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Ministry of Justice, Park-e Shahr,
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email:   via Judiciary website: Iranjudiciary.org/feedback_en.html

28 March 2007

Your Excellency,

The Writers in Prison Committee of Norwegian PEN welcomes the release of prominent women writers and journalists Shadi Sadr, Mahbubeh Abbasgholizadeh and Jila Baniyaghoub, but remains seriously concerned that all three are still facing undisclosed charges for organising a demonstration in Tehran on 4 March 2007.

Shadi Sadr, writer, journalist and lawyer, Mahbubeh Abbasgholizadeh, editor of the quarterly journal Zanan, and Jila Baniyaghoub, prominent journalist and editor of the Iranian Women’s Society website and the women’s section of the Sarmaye newspaper, are all dedicated to women’s’ rights issues in the country. The three women are believed to be held for drafting a statement calling for the demonstration protesting the trial of five women’s rights activists.

Norwegian PEN fears that these three writers and journalists have been targeted solely for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression as guaranteed by Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Iran is a signatory, and calls for all charges against them to be dropped.

Confident that you, Your Excellency, will take action accordingly, I remain,

Yours sincerely

Elisabet W. Middelthon/sign.
Chair Writers in Prison Committee, Norwegian PEN

Copies to:
The President, His Excellency Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
The Presidency, Palestine Avenue,
Azerbaijan Intersection, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: Via Foreign Ministry: +98 21 6 674 790
(mark: “Please forward to H.E. President Ahmadinejad”)
Email:   dr-ahmadinejad@president.ir   via website: www.president.ir/email

The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Oslo
The Norwegian Embassy, Iran
The Iranian Embassy, Oslo