Jailed Iranian Reformer\'s Wife Protests His Transfer to Solitary Cell
The wife of Iran's longtime secular political opposition leader Ezatollah Sahabi spoke out Monday against the government's jailing of her husband, criticizing his transfer to solitary confinement.
In an open letter to Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, Zarindokht Attai said her 75-year-old husband and Ali Afshari, a key figure in the student reformist movement, had been transferred Sunday to single cells at Evin prison in Tehran.
Attai said authorities would not allow her husband to receive any of his personal items or medications.
"The treatment has provoked a lively protest by Sahabi," she wrote, accusing the authorities of "illegal acts."
Sahabi and Afshari were jailed last week for insulting Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in speeches given to Tehran students in November. Sahabi has also been charged with delivering anti-government propaganda in his remarks.
At the student rally on November 26, Sahabi denounced the country's conservatives, vowing that the "politics of repression will not be able to last for long."
Afshari called for a referendum on the Islamic Republic's foundation of "velayat-e-faghi," or religion before politics, which endows Khamenei with preemptive power over the constitution.
In November, Sahabi went on trial at the revolutionary court for taking part in a political conference in Germany earlier this year on the future of reforms in Iran.
Sahabi runs the Iran Freedom Movement, founded by Mehdi Bazaragan, Iran's provisional prime minister during the 1979 Islamic revolution -- TEHRAN (AFP)
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