Iran Human RightsIran activist jailed for six years

Iran activist jailed for six years

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Reuters: Iran sentenced a female human rights activist to six years in prison on Saturday, the latest sign of its determination to punish those the state views as “seditionists” for protesting last year’s presidential election.

TEHRAN (Reuters) – Iran sentenced a female human rights activist to six years in prison on Saturday, the latest sign of its determination to punish those the state views as “seditionists” for protesting last year’s presidential election.

Shiva Nazar Ahari, 26, was arrested in December on her way to the funeral of Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, the spiritual mentor of the Green movement which opposed the re-election of hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last June.

She was convicted of gathering and plotting to commit crime (against the state), propaganda against the establishment and “moharebe” or waging war against God, a crime that can be punished by death under the Islamic Republic’s Sharia law.

In addition to the jail term she has to pay a $400 fine as an alternative punishment to 74 lashes, her lawyer Mohammad Sharif said.

He vowed to appeal the verdict, saying there was “no legal basis for this charge,” according to the semi-official ILNA news agency.

Opposition website Kaleme said Nazar Ahari, who was released last Sunday on $500,000 bail, had spent more than 100 days in solitary confinement.

She was also arrested shortly after the disputed June 2009 presidential vote and released only after spending three months in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison, where dozens of moderate activists and journalists are still being held.

The opposition says the election was rigged, but authorities deny that and have blamed foreign powers for fomenting sedition.

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