Ahwazi poet Arif Nawaseri was reportedly rushed to hospital in the regional capital, Ahwaz on Friday, suffering from life-threatening injuries inflicted during three days of brutal torture by Iranian occupation intelligence forces for reading one of his poems.
Prominent Ahwazi human rights activist Abdul Karim Khalaf told Ahwazna that the poet was arrested by occupation intelligence agents three days before on Tuesday, October 4 while returning to his home in Falahiyeh. The arrest is believed to have been prompted by his recitation of one of his poems at a funeral wake earlier in the day, with the poem praising pan-Arab and Islamic attitudes to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia.
Khalaf said that the Iranian officers had no arrest warrant for Nasaweri, who was rushed to hospital after sustaining multiple injuries under torture, some of which are clearly visible, including marks from electrocution, a favourite method employed by the regime’s torturers.
Ahwazi rights activists held the Iranian authorities fully responsible for the poet’s injuries, calling on international human rights organisations to put pressure on the Iranian state to end its brutal persecution and human rights abuses towards the Ahwazi peoples. Also another activist, identified as 34-year-old Amer Silawi, was detained the following night.
Silawi was also involved in a recent protest against the water shortages afflicting Ahwazis, which have intensified after the regime dammed the region’s main river, the Karoon, and diverted its waters to Isfahan and other Persian cities, with protesters forming a human chain to protest peacefully against this injustice.
In a separate case, two days after Nawaseri’s arrest, intelligence forces, backed by large numbers of security personnel and members of the infamous Basiji militia raided the home of an Ahwazi Arab citizen, Ahyal Haidari in the Malahshiya neighbourhood of Western Ahwaz city on the evening of Thursday October 6, arresting three of his sons as they were performing their evening prayers.
Witnesses told the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahwaz’ (ASMLA) information office that the Iranian forces brutally stormed Haidari’s home without any prior warning at around eight pm on Thursday evening, arresting three of his sons – Abdul Malik, Mohammed and Imad, aged 38, 26 and 25 respectively – as they were performing their Maghreb prayers.
The witnesses added that the regime intelligence forces savagely assaulted all three brothers, despite facing no resistance, using electric batons against all the members of the family, with one of the regime agents beating a sister of the three men and ripping off her hijab as she attempted to protect her brothers.
The regime personnel also caused destruction to furniture and other items in the house, as well as smashing glass and breaking numerous items, with the men’s mother suffering a suspected heart attack as a result of the stress and having to be rushed to hospital, where she remains in the intensive care unit.
The three brothers are well respected and popular in the Malashiya neighbourhood, where they are well known and liked for their principled and honourable behaviour, with the Haidaris widely admired as a devout and highly educated family.