Saturday, July 16, 2005

Hunger striking Baduzade punished with 25 whiplashes by Iranian authorities
The Kurdish prisoner Cehangir Baduzade was punished with 25 whiplashes by the Iranian Urmiye prison administration. The reason behind the punishment was Baduzade's hunger strike and wish to be tried fair and openly.

On July 4, Baduzade was taken out from his cell and punished with 25 whiplashes on the prison yard.

Cehangir Baduzade started a hunger strike on June 24 to protest the false accusations of murdering a man that was made against him by Iranian authorities. Baduzade is demanding to be tried in a fair court. READ MORE

"I am not going to accept this oppression. As a struggle of freedom, I will hunger strike and I will continue until justice is given", Baduzade wrote in a earlier statement to the Kurdish news agency MHA.

Baduzade's wife Turan spoke to MHA.

"We are not allowed to see my husband since he started his hunger strike. We are worried for my husband's health. We know that his condition is very bad. PJAK members supporting my husband are also being punished severely and their families are not allowed to see them either", she said.

Prison guards have told Baduzade that it's not their fault that he can't speak with his family on the phone. "It's the prison administration that has forbidden us to let you talk to your family", they said to Baduzade.

The PJAK supporter Cehangir Baduzade is being held in the Urmiye prison of eastern Kurdistan (northwestern Iran) on false accusations of murdering a man in Urmiye upon his return from exile in southern Kurdistan. Baduzade was arrested by Iranian Pasdaran soldiers and tortured for 45 days. When he didn't accept the charges put against him, he was instead charged for carrying a gun and sentenced to 3 years in prison.

Even though there are no proofs that Baduzade had committed the murder, an Islamic court in Urmiye requested the death sentence for Baduzade. The court in Urmiye is now waiting for 'green light' from Tehran to carry out the death sentence.

Baduzade, who is also known as Husheng Ehmed Shikak, had for many years been active in the Democratic Party of Iran. He later left the organization and moved with his family to southern (Iraqi) Kurdistan and was given refugee status by the United Nations.

After many years, Baduzade returned together with his wife and children to eastern (Iranian) Kurdistan from his exile. Upon his return to Urmiye, Baduzade was arrested by Iranian Pasdaran soldiers, accused of murder, a crime he didn't commit.

Baduzade's hunger strike is now on its 16th day. (as of July 10th)