HRANA reports that a number of political prisoners have been severely beaten by an inmate with a violent criminal record in the Greater Tehran Penitentiary, where there is no separation between political and nonpolitical prisoners. Labor activists Shapour Ehsani Rad and Esmail Gerami, Twitter activist Akbar Faraji, alleged MEK supporter Pouya Ghobadi, and Akbar Bagheri—an ordinary citizen who took part in a protest when he lost his savings to a financial depository’s bankruptcy—were injured in the attacks and transferred to the prison’s medical unit.
According to reports posted to Twitter, the prisoners were transferred to a different block of the prison after the attacks, but a political prisoner, Hossein Qashqaei, who remained in the block where the attacks occurred, said in a telephone conversation that his life was still being threatened. Twitter users say that the prisoners’ assailant, identified as Gholam Bozorgar, remains in the same block as Qashqaei. Hossein Qashqaei is an online and social media activist who was arrested last year and sentenced to two years’ imprisonment by the revolutionary court on the charge of “propaganda against the regime.”
This isn’t the first time that Iranian political prisoners have been subjected to attack by inmates convicted of violent crimes. In 2019, 21-year-old Alireza Shirmohammad Ali was stabbed to death by two violent prisoners. Shirmohammad Ali had been sentenced to eight years for insulting Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and his predecessor, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the Islamic Republic.