Lawyer’s ‘Nationalism’ on Par with Apostasy Says Deputy Prosecutor

Lawyer and human rights activist Mohammad Ali Dadkhah faced new charges in a trial court hearing held on Saturday, 21 May, including a charge on the same level as apostasy, according to the Deputy Prosecutor. Dadkhah’s charges ranged from membership in the Defenders of Human Rights Center, to representing a case against Isfahan’s Metro for endangering national heritage monuments.

“The most important charge in my case is my membership in the founding committee of the Defenders of Human Rights Center, which according to the court, was operating illegally and against national interests. I said in court that according to articles 26 and 27 of the Iranian Constitution, associations do not need permits. They recognize the Defenders Center as illegal. But the question remains as to whether an individual who wishes to run an illegal operation would go to the Interior Ministry, and adopt its articles of incorporation and credo? The reasoning of the court suffers from a paradox and no wise and rational individual would accept it,” Dadkhah told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran about the charges raised against him in court.

“They told me that my actions smell of nationalism. It was the Prosecutor’s deduction that nationalistic activities amount to apostasy. I told him that I am no expert in this area, but of course I have always defended our cultural heritage, such as Nowruz, to the best of my ability. The prophet of Islam said: ‘Love fo… >>>

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