Fariba Adelkhah, seized by Iran as a political prisoner in June 2019


Despite a heavy security presence, demonstrators have rallied in the streets of Zahedan in southeast Iran for the 56th week in a row.

The protests for rights and reforms followed the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody and claims that a regional police chief had raped a 15-year-old girl held in his station. Security forces killed about 90 worshippers and marchers during the initial demonstration on September 30, 2022.

Iran’s leading Sunni cleric, Molavi Abdolhamid, has led the demands for accountability, calling for a referendum on the future of the Islamic Republic. In response, Iranian authorities have detained several clerics, including Abdolhamid’s senior aide.


Concerns are increasing over the fate of disability rights lawyer Nasser Saragaran who has disappeared after being detained by Iranian security forces.

Saragaran, who is blind, is from Saqqez in northwest Iran — the hometown of Mahsa Amini, whose death in police custody in September 2022 sparked nationwide protests.

During the demonstrations, the Iranian regime has arrested and imprisoned dozens of lawyers. Earlier this week, Amini’s attorney Mohammad Saleh Nikbakht was sentenced to one year in prison and a social media ban for “propaganda against the system”.

Sargaran, 36, is also a university lecturer and advocate for the rights of people with disabilities. He was seized at his family home on October 11, 2023, by Intelligence Ministry officer and taken to the Ministry’s detention center in the provincial capital Sanandaj.


The European Union has awarded Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to Mahsa Amini and Iran’s “Woman, Life, Freedom” movement, sparked by her death in police custody in September 2022 after her detention for “inappropriate attire”.

Announcing the award, which recognizes human rights activists and dissidents, European Parliament President Roberta Metsola said:

The brutal murder of 22-year-old Jina Mahsa Amini marked a turning point. It has triggered a women-led movement that is making history….

The world has heard the chants of “Women, Life, Freedom”. Three words that have become a rallying cry for all those standing up for equality, for dignity and for freedom in Iran,. We stand with those who, even from prison, continue to keep Women, Life and Freedom alive.


Artist and former political prisoner Sara Shamsaei has been beaten in the street by unknown assailants.

Shamsaei described assault in a post on Twitter, with photographs of her bruised face:

While I was waiting in Tehran for a taxi, two individuals on motorcycles pulled up in front of me. Initially, I thought they might be resting, but one of them dismounted and launched a vicious assault, repeatedly striking me, throwing me to the ground, and mercilessly dragging me along the pavement.

Shamsaei was detained in September 2022 for participating in protests after the death in police custody of Mahsa Amini. She was held for 40 days, including 27 where she was on hunger strike.

After her release, she was threatened by regime supporters inside and outside court.


The US Treasury has added 11 individuals, eight entities, and one vessel to its sanctions list over support for Iran’s “destabilizing ballistic missile and unmanned aerial vehicle programs”.

Those cited are based in Iran, Hong Kong, China, and Venezuela.

On Wednesday, the UK, France, and Germany extended sanctions on Iran over Tehran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

The measures were due to expire under the terms of the July 2015 agreement between Iran and the 5+1 Powers (US, UK, France, Germany, China, and Russia). However, the US has withdrawn from the deal, and Iran has broken its terms with enrichment of uranium up to 60% and restrictions on monitoring and inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency.


The lawyer for Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old woman whose death in police custody in September 2022 sparked protests across Iran, has been sentenced to one year in prison and a social media ban for “propaganda against the system”.

Mohammad Saleh Nikbakht was condemned over interviews with foreign media outlets, including Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty.

Rezaei’s interviews including discussions about the situation of protesters in Iran, forced “confessions” on State media, and prohibitions on motorcycle licenses for Iranian women.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Iran authorities have finally free French-Iranian academic Fariba Adelkhah, more than four years after she was detained.

Sciences-Po University, where Adelkhah is Director of Research, said she landed in Paris on Tuesday.

A specialist in Shia Islam and post-revolutionary Iran, Adelkhah was arrested in June 2019 and sentenced in May 2020 to 6 1/2 years in prison on national security charges.

She was released from Tehran’s Evin Prison in February but prevented from leaving Iran.

Adelkhah’s colleague and partner Roland Marchal, also seized in June 2019, was freed in a prisoner exchange in March 2020.