Twitter account apparently run from Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's office draws accusations of hypocrisy after online crackdown
January 12, 2011- A Twitter account believed to belong to Iran's supreme leader has triggered controversy among Iranians whose own access to social networking websites remains blocked.
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the man who has the final word in Iran, has come under intense criticism from Iran's many bloggers for launching a crackdown on Twitter and Facebook while his office apparently runs a Twitter account under Khamenei_ir.
The official website of the opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi criticised Khamenei for allegedly signing up to Twitter under the headline: "If it's prohibited why is it that the leader's office has a Twitter account?"
January 10, 2011- TEHRAN — A human rights lawyer has been sentenced by the Iranian authorities to 11 years in jail for crimes that include “activities against national security” and “propaganda against the regime,” family members confirmed Monday. In addition to her jail sentence, the lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, was barred from practicing law and from leaving the country for 20 years, her husband, Reza Khandan, said in a telephone interview on Monday.
Mr. Khandan said the main charges against his wife, who is well known here for her work defending women and children, stemmed from interviews she gave to foreign news outlets, even though “there is nowhere in the world, not even in Iran, where speaking to foreign media is a crime.”
The mother of two young children, Ms. Sotoudeh was arrested in September and has spent most of the time since her arrest in solitary confinement. She is thin and weak after conducting several hunger strikes to protest harsh treatment, her husband said. “However,” he added, “her spirit is strong.”
Shahram Amiri, who claimed he was abducted by CIA, has not been seen since return from US last year
January 4, 2011- An Iranian nuclear scientist who claimed to have been abducted by the CIA and who returned to a hero's welcome in Tehran in July has been imprisoned and tortured on suspicion of giving away state secrets, according to an opposition website.
Iranbriefing.net – run by a US-based group that normally reports on political prisoners and the activities of Iran's revolutionary guard – said the scientist, Shahram Amiri, had been interrogated intensively for three months in Tehran before spending two months in solitary confinement, where his treatment left him hospitalised for a week.
The Tehran authorities would not confirm or deny the account. Asked to comment, a spokesman for Iran's judiciary said: "I haven't heard anything about this [his arrest] and I don't have any information regarding this matter."
June 2, 2010- Iranian authorities have begun police patrols in the capital to arrest women wearing clothes deemed improper. The campaign against loose-fitting veils and other signs of modernism comes as government opponents are calling for rallies to mark the anniversary of the disputed presidential election, and critics of the crackdown say it is stoking feelings of discontent.
But hard-liners say that improper veiling is a "security issue" and that "loose morality" threatens the core of the Islamic republic.
Iran's interior minister has promised a "chastity plan" to promote the proper covering "from kindergarten to families," though the details are unclear. Tehran police have been arresting women for wearing short coats or improper veils and even for being too suntanned. Witnesses report fines up to $800 for dress considered immodest.
Acclaimed film-maker who supported opposition green movement also banned from foreign travel or speaking to media
December 20, 2010- The acclaimed Iranian film-maker Jafar Panahi was sentenced to six years in prison today, and banned from directing and producing films for the next 20 years, his lawyer said.
Panahi, an outspoken supporter of Iran's opposition green movement, was convicted of colluding in gathering and making propaganda against the regime, Farideh Gheyrat told the Iranian state news agency, ISNA.
"He is therefore sentenced to six years in prison and also he is banned for 20 years from making any films, writing any scripts, travelling abroad and also giving any interviews to the media including foreign and domestic news organisations," she said. Gheyrat said she would appeal against the conviction.
December 19, 2010- Roozbeh, a 26-year-old university student in Tehran, considers himself a revolutionary. Never mind that he rarely leaves his room at his mother’s house. “Many people of my generation hate this regime,” he tells NEWSWEEK via Skype, asking that his last name be kept private. He says he spends 14 hours a day dodging government-imposed firewalls to share news with other Iranian cyberactivists inside and outside Iran. His strategy resonates with leaders of the country’s opposition Green Movement, who are now shunning street protests in favor of online organizing.
September 13, 2010- Jailed Iranian blogger and human rights activist Shiva Nazar Ahari has been released on $500,000 bond. She is awaiting sentencing following her trial on September 4th, but for the present she is free after 266 days in prison.
In her September 4th trial she faced charges of “assembly and collusion to commit a crime”, “propaganda against the regime”, “disrupting the public order”, and most seriously, “moharebeh” (enmity with God), which carries a possible death sentence. The trial took place in branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court with presiding judge Pir-Abassi.
Worldwide protests have been staged calling for her release.
September 3rd, 2010- On the eve of Shiva Nazar Ahari's trial, in which she potentially faces the death penalty, Iranian-American protesters gathered outside the Iranian Interests Section in Washington DC. On the previous day, representatives of the Iranian Government refused to accept a petition from the protesters demanding Shiva's release.
For more on Shiva's case click HERE
Mobile Banner Campaign In Support Of Iranian Freedom At Rally
Rally Marks One Year Mark Of Fraudulent Elections
-By Melody Moezzi, April 26th, 2010
Last week, Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi–Tehran’s Friday Prayer leader–shook the patience of women worldwide by claiming that promiscuous and immodest women were responsible for earthquakes. Yes, you read that right.
I wish I could say that his absurd statement surprised me as much as it did countless others, but as an Iranian American woman who is all too familiar with the words and ways of misguided mullahs, I can’t say that I have an ounce of surprise left in me for Sedighi’s dim-witted declaration. I was, however, pleasantly surprised by two creative responses to his comments. One from an imaginative Indiana-based blogger Jen McCreight , who also calls herself Blag Hag, and another by an ingenious pair of professors–Golbarg Bashi , an Iranian studies professor at Rutgers University, and Negar Mottahedeh, a film, literature and women’s studies professor at Duke University.