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28 Kurds arrested for political, civil activism, Newroz celebrations: watchdog

  2021-05-03  | 
 Zhyan News Network
Illustrative image
 Zhyan News Network

SULAIMANI – At least 28 ethnic Kurds were arrested by the Iranian security forces in Iran’s Kurdish-majority provinces on charges of political and civil activism, participation in Newroz celebrations and membership to the Kurdish political parties, a watchdog said on Monday (April 3).

Twenty-two were apprehended on charges of membership to the anti-government Kurdish political parties, five for civil activism, while another for participation in the Newroz celebrations, according monthly figures by Henagw Organization for Human Rights.

Most of the detentions were in West Azerbaijan’s Urmia with 13 cases, followed by Kurdistan province’s Sandandaj with twelve and three in Ilam, the watchdog said, noting three teenagers under 16-years-old and three women from Urmia, Piranshahr and Sanandaj were among the detainees. 

On March 30, two teenage boys were arrested in Urmia’s Targawar region taken to an unknown location on charges of raising the Kurdistan flag, the watchdog said on Thursday. 

About 114 ethnic Kurds have been arrested in the Iranian Kurdistan since January in a large-scale clampdown by the Iranian authorities on dissidents, environmental, political and cultural activists, said the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN), another watchdog.

On March 4, Hengaw reported that at least twenty-three Kurdish ethnic citizens were apprehended in March by the security forces in the Iranian Kurdistan on charges of political, civil activities and participation in Newroz celebrations,

At least 205 political and civil activists, journalists, environmentalists were arrested in 2020, according to the Kurdistan Human Rights Association (KMMK), another watchdog.

International watchdogs such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW) have voiced alarm regarding the state of press freedom and the freedom of expression in Iran.

(Zhyan English)