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Amir Salar Davoodi

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Iran: Amir Salar Davoodi condemned to 30 years of prison and 111 lashes.

June 3rd, 2019.

Amir Salar Davoodi is an Iranian lawyer who defended several political prisoners and members of religious or ethnic minorities. He was very active on social networks – he notably animated a Telegram channel dedicated to lawyers defending human rights – where he openly expressed his opposition to the Teheran regime.

He was arrested in his office by intelligence officers on November 20th, 2018. His arrest, as well as the search of both his office and home, was conducted without any warrant. Some of his work documents were confiscated. He was put in pre-trial detention, which conditions are deeply worrisome: location kept secret for a while; isolation; prohibition to consult with his lawyer or the prison’s doctor; prohibition to receive visits…

On June 1st, 2019 Amir Salar Davoodi was condemned by the Tehran Revolutionary Court to 30 years of imprisonment, 111 lashes and a 30 millions rials fine (approximately 4000$).

According to his lawyer, M. Vahid Moshkani Farahani, Amir Salar Davoodi is accused (in a first case) of “gathering and collusion”, “dissemination of fake news”, “insult to the Supreme leader” and “propaganda against the system”. He is also accused (in a second case) of having formed a “group with the intent of overthrowing the government” and of having “cooperated with the government of the United States”.

This sentence comes at a time of severe repression against Iranian lawyers (see for instance the cases of Nasrin Sotoudeh and Mohammad Najafi) and of drastic restriction of the rights of the defense.

The OIAD firmly condemns the cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment to which Amir Salar Davoodi was condemned.

The OIAD urges Iranian authorities to release him immediately and to respect his right to a fair trial.

The OIAD firmly condemns the repression suffered by Iranian lawyers who are prosecuted or imprisoned for having legitimately exercised their profession and used their freedom of expression.

The OIAD urges the Iranian authorities to comply with the United Nations’ Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers, according to which “lawyers like other citizens are entitled to freedom of expression, belief, association and assembly. In particular, they shall have the right to take part in public discussion of matters concerning the law, the administration of justice and the promotion and protection of human rights and to join or form local, national or international organizations and attend their meetings, without suffering professional restrictions by reason of their lawful action or their membership in a lawful organization. In exercising these rights, lawyers shall always conduct themselves in accordance with the law and the recognized standards and ethics of the legal profession.” (Principle n° 23)

Regarding Davoodi’s conditions of detention, and particularly the prohibition to meet with his lawyer, the OIAD recalls that according to the same Basic Principles, “all arrested, detained or imprisoned persons shall be provided with adequate opportunities, time and facilities to be visited by and to communicate and consult with a lawyer, without delay, interception or censorship and in full confidentiality” (Principle n° 8).