Iran: Concern for Kabudvand’s wellbeing

English PEN is seriously concerned about reports that Iranian Kurdish journalist Mohammad Sadiq Kabudvand, who was arrested on 1 July 2007, is being ill-treated and is in a deteriorating state of health in detention.


PEN is calling for the immediate and unconditional release of Kabudvand, and meanwhile seeks assurances of his well being, that his basic rights are being respected, including access to all necessary medical care as a matter of urgency.


Amnesty International, on 1 November 2007, reported that Kabudvand, who suffers from high blood pressure, a skin condition and a kidney condition, has been told by prison guards in Evin Prison that he must request written permission every time he wants to go to the toilet. There are fears this will lead to kidney damage.




According to PEN’s information, Kabudvand, editor of the banned weekly Payam-e mardom-e Kurdestan (Kurdistan People’s Message) and also chair of the Kurdish Human Rights Organization in Tehran, was arrested on 1 July 2007 at his place of work by plain-clothed security officers. Following his arrest, Kabudvand was initially taken to his house in Tehran, where security officers confiscated three computers, books, photographs and personal documents, before taking him away to the Intelligence Ministry’s Section 209 of Evin Prison. He is believed to have had no contact with his family since his arrest.


No reason has been given for his arrest, although it could be linked to a previous one-year prison sentence which he has never served. On 18 August 2005, Kabudvand received a suspended prison sentence of 18 months and a 5-year ban on working as a journalist following conviction by a Revolutionary Court on charges of ‘disseminating tribal issues and publishing provocative articles’ and ‘spreading lies with the intention of upsetting public opinion’ . The suspended prison sentence was then reportedly increased to one year’s actual imprisonment. In September 2006, he was summoned to begin his prison sentence, but remained free pending an appeal against his conviction to the Supreme Court.


Kabudvand has written two books on democracy and a third on the women’s movement in Iran, which were not given publishing licences.


Please send appeals:


  • Expressing serious concerns about reports of ill-treatment against journalist and writer Mohammad Sadiq Kabudvand, and seeking details of any charges against him;
  • Calling for his release if he is being held solely for peacefully exercising his right to free expression;
  • Seeking reassurances from the Iranian authorities that Mohammad Sadiq Kabudvand’s wellbeing is guaranteed, including access to medical treatment and basic facilities;
  • Expressing concerns at the apparent pattern of repression against journalists and human rights activist in Kurdish Iran.




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

Salutation: Your Excellency


His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi

Ministry of Justice, Park-e Shahr,

Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran

Salutation: Your Excellency


Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejeie

Ministry of Intelligence,

Second Negarestan Street,

Pasdaran Avenue,


Islamic Republic of Iran.

Salutation: Dear Minister


You may wish to send copies also to:


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”)


Kurdistan Human Rights Organization
PO Box 188-13465
Islamic Republic of Iran.


It may be more effective, however, to send the above appeals via the Iranian representative in London:


His Excellency Mr Rasoul Movahedian

Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran

16 Prince’s Gate

London SW7 1PT

Fax: 020 7589 4440





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