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Manijeh Najm Eraghi: Prisoner of the day

Writer and Women's rights activist

Zamaneh and Kaleme: Manijeh Najm Eraghi, an Iranian writer and translator, a women's rights activist, and the elected Secretary of Iranian Writers' Association was arrested on Sunday to serve out a one-year sentence, after she was summoned to Tehran Security Police.

According to Committee of Human Rights Reporters, Najm Eraghi was first arrested on October 16, 2010 and was released on bail after three days.

Branch 26 of Tehran Revolutionary Court under Judge Pirabbasi sentenced her to one year in prison on charges of "membership in the Iranian Writers’ Association," "mailing Writers' Association statements," and "participating in gatherings" at the grave sites of assassinated writers Mohammad Mokhtari and Mohammad Jaffar Pouyandeh, and contemporary Iranian poet, Ahmad Shamloo.

On May 21, Fariborz Rais Dana, an Iranian economist and another member of the Iranian Writers’ Association was arrested. Rais Dana was also sentenced to one year in jail for membership in the writers’ association and for giving interviews to the foreign media about the impact of government-subsidy restructuring in Iran.

The Iranian Writers’ Association has been working for the rights of writers for over four decades, and its history is one of constant resistance and pressure from the government. On 28 October 2010, the Iranian Writers' Association issued a statement, objecting to pressure on Manijeh Najm Eraghi. "On the morning of 25 August 2010, Intelligence Ministry forces, with a search warrant, went to the home of Manijeh Najm Eraghi, the Iranian Writers' Association Secretary and confiscated the Association's stamp and documents, a computer, several books, and her personal documents. Later, she was interrogated four times, each time for hours, on charges of 'propagating against the state.' She was summoned on 13 October 2010, she was arrested on 16 October, and she was temporarily released on bail on 19 October," said the statement.

Manijeh Najm Eraghi has published several books in the area of women's issues, including "Sociology of Women," published by Ney Publications in Tehran.

30-May-2012
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