SPME Petition 7

Petition to the Government of Iran to Free Haleh Esfandiari, Kian Tajbakhsh and Ali Shakeri

Revision 6.28.07. Since Dr. Esfandiari was imprisoned in May, two other Iranian-American Scholars have been arrested and detained, Kian Tajbakhsh, a social scientist and Urban Planner from the Open Society Institute in New York City and Ali Shakeri of the Center for Peacebuilding at the University of California-Irvine. Detained and then arrested in similar fashion, this petition also calls for their release. SPME
We, the undersigned professorial colleagues and other citizens of good will, petition and demand that the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran immediately free Dr. Haleh Esfandiari, an Iranian-American citizen who serves as Director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington D.C.

She was imprisoned in Evin Prison on May 10, 2007 without public charges after not being allowed to leave Iran following her visit with her 93-year-old mother four months ago.

We especially fear for Dr. Esfandiari, now 67 years old, with respect to the treatment she will receive in Evin prison which, according to the New York Times (May 9, 2007 ) "has a history of treating prisoners poorly, including foreigners. A Canadian-Iranian photographer was beaten to death there in July 2003; a judicial inquiry later claimed that she had died from injuries sustained in a fall."

Apparently according to this report and other reports, this incident is the latest in a series of incidents beginning last December when she was enroute to the airport to return to Washington, when she was waylaid by masked gunman with her luggage and Iranian and American passports stolen following which she was interrogated by the Iranian Intelligence Ministry and asked to make false statements about her work at the Wilson Center. When she did not "cooperate," she was summoned again and then taken to prison.

We demand her immediate release and regular daily monitoring by the International Red Cross during any time she may be spending in incarceration.

We demand that President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad be individually held accountable for this egregious imprisonment in an international court of law for anything that might happen to Dr. Efandiari.

For Further information: Contact Dr. Edward S. Beck, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East at 717.576.5038.

For Further information and reactions to the detainment of Haleh Esfandiari click:

As long as you are signing this petition, please go to SPME's Petition List To Sign Other Important Petitions. Thank you.

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