Campaign for Iranian Painter
The following is a reprint from UNITY, the official journal of CFMEU, the Australian Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union.
Call the Iranian Embassy in Canberra on
6290 7000 and ask for Zamani to be released.
Email the Iranian Embassy at consular@
iranembassy.org.au and protest the government’s
attack on workers’ rights and those who campaign
Send an email of support to Zamani and other
political prisoners at firstname.lastname@example.org
CFMEU Organiser Mansour Razaghi is leading a campaign to raise awareness of the plight of jailed Iranian painter Shahrokh
Zamani, a member of the Follow-Up Committee to Set Up Free Labour Organisations in Iran and the Painters’ Union
of Tehran, was arrested on June 5 last year and was sentenced to 11 years’ jail. He was charged with “propaganda against the regime”, but Razaghi says his crime is defending the rights of workers and creating a union. During his imprisonment, Zamani has been subjected to severe torture and cruelty and is now being held in the notorious Rajaei-Shahr prison.
Razaghi has been taking a poster calling for Zamani to be freed around building sites and asking workers to add their voice to the international campaign.
In a letter smuggled out of jail in October, Zamani outlined some of the tortures he has endured in jail. Among these he says political prisoners are routinely encouraged by prison guards to attack them and face no reprisals for doing so.
In Tabriz Prison, where he was held for a time, he says there are 21 beds to a room with more than 40 inmates in the room which is about 20m long.
“The only hope we political prisoners have are the human rights organisations,” Zamani writes. “Lastly I want to emphasise that the offices of the intelligence services have threatened my life both directly and indirectly: by poisoning; exposure to prisoners with AIDS; unleashing mentally ill, violent and dangerous inmates on me; and forcing prisoners around me to encourage me to escape so that I can be shot with a bullet while trying to escape.
“So I am telling everyone, if I die in prison for any reason it is done by the officials.”