A fictitious case or one where evidence was never shared has seen the sentencing of Fariba Adelkhah, the French Iranian anthropologist and academia for a six year jail period in Iran. Imprisoned under charges of hampering national security, she has finally been found guilty, for a crime she has probably not committed and there has been no evidence found so prove it either.
In June 2019, she was arrested along with Scientist Roland Marchal, who was finally furloughed in April mid on insistence from the United Nations that political prisoners who posed no harm to the Iranian government should be pardoned or released in order they are not caught in the contraction web in prisons that were swimming with corona virus victims.
Scientist Roland Marchal was allowed to return home to France after 9 1/2 months in prison due to a prisoner swap between Paris and Tehran.
Adelkhah went on hunger strike for 49 days for academic freedom on Christmas eve last year. Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert, serving a 10-year sentence for espionage, joined her.
While she is said to have had a closed door hearing, it was skewed and she has now been sentenced to a 6 year jail term. French President Emmanuel Macron, who called the detention “intolerable” on earlier occasions, urged Iran to release her. But Iran has chosen to turn a deaf ear to diplomatic solutions and ignored the President’s call for her release.
British citizen Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who also holds an Iranian citizenship is another such example. She was recently released, having served half of a five-year sentence for alleged espionage.Fariba Adelkhah is a French-Iranian anthropologist and academic at Sciences Po who was accused of anti-government propaganda.
The 60-year-old Adelkhah runs the risk of contracting the corona virus. She has already spent 10 months in the jail controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which are sanctioned by the US as a terrorist faction and known to have been helping in civil war in Syria and Yemen for close to a decade.
The one major reason for Iran’s continuous acts of violating human rights of individuals with dual citizenship is that it refuses to recognize the act of holding one. The country has continued to arrest dozens of dual nationals in recent years on alleged espionage charges and tried them without fair hearing. Most of them have only been released after fulfilling their jail term.
Iran seems to have found ways to get back at European countries that have not sided with it when US withdrew support from the 2015 nuclear treaty and continued to sanction Tehran. It has made the safety of many academia and individuals in Iran fragile, to an extent that their own countries cannot find ways to guarantee them safe extraction routes, if caught in the Iranian prisons. All diplomatic channels seem to come to a knots end with Iran on this matter.
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