The Iranian regime’s suppressive forces arrested some 500 Gonabadi dervishes Saturday morning, September 20. They planned to gather at 11 a.m. in front of Tehran’s Prosecutor’s Office in solidarity with the imprisoned dervishes who are on hunger strike. The families of the prisoners who are on strike and a large number of women and children are amongst the arrestees. They are requesting to meet their imprisoned families and relatives who are in critical condition after 21 days of hunger strike. They are saying that if their brothers are to be victimized in prison, they too would want to join them. Their sole crime is that they are dervish.
After the protest gathering was announced by the Dervishes, on Saturday morning, the clerical regime dispatched a large number of IRGC, intelligence, security and anti-riot agents to the street leading to the Prosecutor’s Office in Ark Square (central Tehran). They closed down the street, as well as the exits of Tehran’s Bazaar metro, in an effort to prevent the formation of this gathering. They are preventing protesters from standing and even sitting in front of the Prosecutor’s Office. The families of the dervishes, particularly the women who resisted the coercions by the suppressive forces, were assaulted, insulted and battered.
Those apprehended were taken to various police stations, including police station 113 in the Bazaar, 107 in Palestine, 124 in Qolhak, 159 in Bee-sim (Shush), 130 in Naziabad, 109 in Baharestan, 114 in Qiassi, Narmak (Haft Hoz), 156 in Afsariyeh, 145 in Vanak, 181 in Karaj, 160 in Khazaneh, 106 in Namjou, 118 in Satarkhan, Majidiyeh, Khani Abad, 156 in Kian Shahr, 139 in Marzdaran, and 134 in Shahrak-e Gharb.
Nine of the imprisoned dervishes: Messrs. Hamidreza Moradi Sarvestani, Afshin Karampour, Farshid Yadollahi, Reza Entessari, Amir Eslami, Omid Behrouzi, Mostafa Daneshjou, Mostafa Abdi and Kasra Nouri have staged a hunger strike in the Evin and Shiraz prisons since August 31 to demand complete release of the dervishes’ community from prisons and for the regime to be held accountable for years of violation of dervishes’ rights. The imprisoned dervishes in recent years have been under great pressure by regime’s henchmen. In addition to physical tortures, on numerous occasions they have been transferred to ordinary prisoners’ ward or to solitary confinement and in a heinous and humiliating act, their mustaches have been shaved off.
Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the Iranian Resistance, expressed deep abhorrence regarding the anti-human and anti-Islamic measures by the leaders of the Velayat-e faqih system against the innocent dervishes and called on all international bodies and human rights organs, especially the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, to adopt immediate measures to secure the swift and unconditional release of all the arrestees, as well as the imprisoned dervishes, and to look into their demands. She also called for the referral of the dossier of crimes of the religious fascism ruling Iran to the United Nations Security Council.