Update: Iran: Mourning Mothers Released

International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran

All members of the Mourning Mothers who were detained in Laleh Park in Tehran on Saturday, 9 January, have been gradually released, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran reported today. The Campaign strongly condemns the harassment and detention of the Mourning Mothers and to address their legitimate grievances. Mourning Mothers is a group of mothers and relatives of those killed by government forces during recent events and was formed following the death of Neda Agha-Soltan. The group has grown to include the mothers and relatives of political prisoners who were executed in the past.

The group meets every Saturday in Laleh Park in Tehran to grieve the loss of their loved ones. However, security forces have routinely attacked and dispersed their gathering. On Saturday, 9 January, thirty-two members of the group were detained and taken to Vozara Detention Center.

On Sunday, 10 January, the mothers were taken to the Revolutionary Court and arraigned. Two elderly detainees who suffered serious health problems were released on Sunday afternoon. On Sunday evening, another fourteen detainees were released, while the remaining sixteen were transferred to Evin prison. On Monday evening, the authorities released two more detainees from Evin prison after they posted guarantees from a government employee. The remaining fourteen mothers were released on Tuesday evening, 12 January, after they also posted guarantees. The sixteen mothers who were taken to Evin prison, though released, have an open judicial file against them and can be prosecuted in the future.

These recent detentions represent the second time that security forces have detained the group’s members in less than a month. On 5 December 2009, authorities detained fifteen mothers in Laleh Park in Tehran.

13 January 2010

For the latest human rights developments in Iran visit the Campaign’s website at www.iranhumanrights.org
For interviews or more information:
Hadi Ghaemi, in New York: +1 917-669-5996
Aaron Rhodes, in Hamburg:  +49 170-323-8314