Ahwazi diaspora activists take to social media in defense of political prisoners



Ahwazi activists have launched a campaign on social media under the hashtag #Free_Ahwazi_Prisoners

The campaign included four hashtags bearing the names of current Ahwazi political prisoners. The hashtags are #Free_Abdallah_Fahroud Chaldawi, #Free_Ali_Hattab Sawari, #Free_Ahmed_Salawati, and #Free_Ahmed_Thaalbi.

In regards to the campaign, activists highlighted that the Iranian regime has relentlessly pursued repressive measures against Ahwazis since it annexed the region of Ahwaz decades ago. These measures include indiscriminate arrests, forced disappearances, and arbitrary imprisonments. Activists indicated these arrests are often conducted in the middle of the night without warrants.

In a statement, the activists said, "As the consequences of the path we chose are known, the Ahwazi freedom activists do not care about the risks posed by the Iranian regime."

"Our second home is prison," they added.

Activists noted that Ahwazi prisoners have rights stipulated by international laws which are being systematically violated by the Iranian regime. These rights include the right to meet family members at least once a week, the right to complete education, and the right to proper healthcare. None of these rights are being respected for those languishing behind bars in the secret prison cells of the regime.

The activists also pointed out severe torture inflicted on Ahwazis imprisoned by the regime. Despite banning violence against prisoners, both physical and psychological, by the international watchdogs, the Iranian regime continues to be the world's number one torturer.

The Iranian regime has legalized torturing political prisoners through a decree from their Supreme Court to solicit confessions from the detainees.

According to activists, Iranian investigators have been given the right to use all forms of torture against detainees.

These horrendous forms of torture include electrocution, beatings, sleep deprivation, late night interrogation, denial of family visitation, invasive questioning, and threats to torture or lock up their relatives, ransacking of belongings, and confiscation of cellphones. Ahwazi prisoners are often coerced into confession by extreme torture, which then enables judges to issue unjust sentences against them.

In regards to the prisoners specifically mentioned in the recent campaigns, Ahwazis on social media are calling on human rights groups to pressure the Iranian regime to set those prisoners free. Iranian Intelligence service personnel abducted Ahwazi activist Abdallah Farhoud Chaldawi last August 27th. Authorities said he would remain in jail as long as he persisted to oppose the regime and violate the constitution. In a similar case, 23-year- old activist Ahmed Thaalabi has been detained since November 1st after being taken by regime personnel to an unknown location. He partook in several protests regarding the regime stealing Karun river waters and diverting the river's course to Persian cities only. He also spoke out against the deliberate pollution of the environment by Iranian authorities.

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