Shakila Monfared

Iranian Political Prisoner Denied Medical Leave Despite Excessive Bail

Wednesday, 07/19/2023

In a recent development concerning the treatment of political prisoners in Iran, Shakila Monfared has been denied medical leave for gallbladder surgery.

Her brother, Ashkan Monfared, took to Twitter to express his frustration, stating that over three weeks have passed since they paid a bail of fifty billion rials (approximately 100,000 USD) for her medical treatment, yet they have received no updates and have faced deception and harassment from authorities.

According to Ashkan Monfared's statement, the Iranian regime has adopted a new tactic involving high bail amounts, where families are required to pay about ten percent of the bail for property valuation. He accused the authorities of using this money for their own benefit.

Shakila Monfared's troubles began on August 31, 2020, when security forces arrested her without a warrant while leaving her home. She was subsequently taken to a detention center controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) in Tehran. In January 2022, Monfared received a six-year prison sentence and four months of probation work based on charges of "propaganda activities against the regime" and "insulting the sanctities of Islam."

This incident takes place in the context of news about the release of Hossein Fereydoun, the brother of former president Hassan Rouhani, on grounds of "medical concerns." He was convicted of corruption charges.

Judiciary spokesman Masoud Setayeshi defended the decision on Tuesday, asserting that individuals with medical problems cannot be detained. However, this comes in the wake of numerous reports indicating that Iranian authorities have deliberately denied medical care to political prisoners, leading to fatalities and suffering.

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