Iranian university students protesting against mandatory hijab

Leak Reveals Inner Workings Of Rape Cover-Up By Iranian Regime

Wednesday, 02/08/2023

A letter leaked by a hacktivist group to Iran International reveals details about the rape of two female protesters, aged 18 and 23, by IRGC agents.

Obtained by the hacktivist group Edalat-e Ali (Ali's Justice), the document clearly shows how the Iranian government’s repression machine covers up rape and sexual abuse by its agents.

Edalat-e Ali has been leaking sensitive information about Iran’s security forces and conditions in prisons.

Reports about detained protesters began trickling in in November and since then there have been many victims and families who have disclosed what happened to them.

Alireza Sadeqi and Alireza Hosseini are two IRGC agents referred to in a letter dated October 13, 2022, from Mohammad Shahriari, deputy prosecutor and head of General and Revolutionary Courts, district 27, to Ali Salehi, prosecutor at Tehran General and Revolutionary Courts, about the arrest and the subsequent rape of the two women.

Armita Abbasi, a 20-year-old protester who was released on February 7 after months in custody

Agents, who rape with impunity

As the deputy prosecutor informs his superior in the letter, the two women contact police station No. 124 in Tehran and report being arrested and then raped by agents on October 3.

Shahriari instantly notes that the two women’s complaint has not been registered after “coordination with Hefa [Persian acronym for the police intelligence agency]”.

It is also mentioned that a person, allegedly an agent, named Alireza Sadeqi has been detained along with his father at their home in Tehran’s Pirouzi street, where loads of batons, ammunitions, bulletproof jackets, police radios, handcuffs, IDs for different organizations such as the Law Enforcement Command (police), IRGC and the Judicial system have been found as well as a hoard of dollar bills and drugs.

Alireza Hosseini, an IRGC captain in charge of the intelligence division of Imam Hassan unit, was also arrested and transferred to a prison belonging to a police intelligence unit, the letter continues, adding that his motorbike had been found in the house of the “accused [previously] detained”.

In the letter it is not clear exactly how the two agents were identified and arrested.

The letter further details how they admitted to raping the two women, with Sadeqi acknowledging that they detained the two women near a gas station while on a mission in Sattarkhan street, in western Tehran.

Superiors ordered them to free the women because at the time there were no facilities available for their detention. Apparently, the accused took the women back to where they were picked up and that is when the rape took place.

Confessing to raping the women, Sadeqi argued that it was one of the women who initiated sexual advances in the car and that he recited “Sigheh”, a private and verbal temporary marriage contract which is supposed to make an intercourse religiously permissible. He also dropped the names of his colleagues, Alireza Hosseini, Hojjat Keivanlou and Ali Shahroudi, alleging that they might have raped the other woman, according to the letter.

Alireza Hosseini, however, refused to admit to any sexual abuse at first, stating that the arrests were made based on suspicions that the women were protesters.

He later confessed to the crime by saying: “I saw Sadeqi speaking to one of the female detainees and advised him to keep his distance. After a couple of minutes, I saw him groping [NAME REDACTED]’s back. I told him to stop but he pushed the second girl, named [NAME REDACTED], towards me. I shook my head in disbelief, wondering what’s going on!’”

His subsequent testimony appears to recount how Sadeqi coerced the woman to have oral sex as he was “standing with the front side of his pants pulled down and [NAME REDACTED] was busy…”.

About his own case, Hosseini pointed the finger at the woman, alleging that she said, “For God’s sake, let us loose,” while undoing his fly.

A sample page of the letter leaked by hacktivist group Edalat-e Ali (Ali's Justice) that reveals details about the rape of female protesters

Attempt to defend abusive agents

In a blatant attempt, to understate the agents’ misconduct in the document, the deputy prosecutor concludes that “the defendants merely formed a gang for extortion or abduction and committed criminal acts”. In this part of the letter, terms such as “independent detention centers”, “torturing of people”, “extortion” and “widespread relationship with women and girls” stand out.

The document finally reveals how the Islamic Republic’s repression machine shuts down cases related to sexual misconduct by agents as it reads: “Considering the problematic nature of the case, the possibility of this information being leaked to social media and its misrepresentation by enemy groups, it is recommended that necessary orders be issued for it to be filed in the ‘Top Secret’ category. Since no complaint has been registered and the defendants have been dismissed, it is advised that the case is gradually closed without any reference to the involved military institutions.”

Since mass demonstrations began in Iran in the wake of Mahsa Amini’s death in the hands of the so-called morality police last September, multiple reports have been released, offering evidence of rape and sexual abuse of female protesters from the time of detention to interrogations. There have also been reports suggesting that security forces target women with shotgun fire to their faces, breasts, and genitals.

The latest document adds to a trove of evidence that Iran’s security forces, engaged in torture and sexual violence, can act with impunity to advance the Islamic Republic’s repression of dissent.

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