Saturday, 18 July 2015
23 June 2021

“The Shocking Situation of Gharchak Prison”

2011 May 27

Fariba Davoudi Mohajer
Iran Human Rights Voice

On Monday May 9th, the head of the Prisons’ Organization reported that all female prisoners from Tehran province will be moved to Gharchak Prison in Varamin. According to published reports, a huge number of female prisoners from Evin and Rajaishahr prisons have already been moved to this prison. Based on the published reports from female political prisoners, Gharchak Prison is located in the deserts of Tehran suburbs, which was previously used for aviculture. This prison consists of seven large halls which each house more than 200 prisoners. There is a threat of critical respiratory problems caused by the high density of sewage fumes as there is no working air conditioning system. Each hall is equipped with only two shower closets for more than 200 prisoners, which is also the place to wash dishes, do laundry and take a bath. This has contributed to making this prison an intolerable place to live.

Prisoners are not provided three daily meals but are fed only when the guards wish. There is a lack of an adequate supply of food and water. According to the prisoners, many young and even under aged prisoners are kept there and for most of the day, the prison is without running water. During the last few days prisoners have protested these inhumane conditions. Prison authorities have reacted to these protests by beating the protesters with batons. Some prisoners have reported that “those who try to escape the agents in order to keep themselves from being beaten up, fall under the feet of other prisoners and get hurt.”

In a letter to Dr. Mohammad Hassan Ziaifar, the head of the Islamic Human Rights Commission, the families of these prisoners asked for help and an urgent investigation into the situation of their loved ones. The letter describes that, “female political prisoners live among a number of prisoners who were convicted of murder, smuggling, theft, etc. They stated their concerns to their families that should this situation go on, their lives would be in danger.” Political prisoners have started a hunger strike to protest to their conditions and worries remain that as authorities pay no attention, their names will be recorded as the first casualties of this prison.

Shabnam Madadzadeh, the former secretary of the Islamic Forum of Students at the Tarbia Moallem University of Tehran, stated that she was moved from Rajaishahr prison to Gharchak Prison. Her father disclosed the information during an interview with the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.

Abdolali Madadzadeh described the conversation with his daughter, “It was only a one minute talk. She said that 200 people had been brought to Gharchak Prison and that they had nearly no access to bathrooms and toilets. They wash the dishes, do laundry and bath all in the same place. There is no toilet. She said they had nothing. Bullies, murderers, political prisoners, robbers and addicts are all being held in one place.” Attorney Nasrin Sotudeh and two female Baha’i prisoners are also among these prisoners.

It is necessary to note that these conditions are against the executive orders of the prisons. According to mandates 91, 92 and 93 of the executive orders of the prisons, prisoners have the right to proper hygiene such as clean clothes, hygienic necessities especially for women, food which contains enough calories and vitamins provided in three daily meals alongside tea and clean water. According to mandates 100 and 108 of the same orders, the hygienic situation of prisons must be good, the bathrooms and toilets must always be clean and enough cold and hot showers must be made available. Also according to Note 1 of mandate 234 of this order, prisoners must serve their term of imprisonment in the closest prison to their homes if requested, so that their family members can easily visit them. However, all these laws have been violated and the prisoners live in devastating situations.

What is clear is that the Islamic Republic is trying to put female political prisoners under even more pressure, torture and violence. By moving these women to a place which was previously used to breed hens and applying different measures in order to destroy their body and soul, these actions are aimed to humiliate women and it puts them in a death camp like situation.

The situation of this prison is so devastating that the parliamentary representative of Firooz Abad, Yunes Mousavi, objected to it in a general session.

Finally by intensifying their protests, political prisoners have been returned to Evin Prison, but the situation of normal female prisoners is still devastating and no improvements have been made concerning their conditions.

Clearly, human rights organizations need to take a quick stance on this issue and ask the IR to move all these prisoners, political or normal, to prisons with adequate living conditions. Governments should react to the deplorable conditions of female prisoners in Iran and protest the IR actions in a united fashion.


«نوشته فوق می تواند نظر نویسنده باشد و الزامن نظر رادیو کوچه نیست»


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