Hunger Strike for Medical Treatment

At the first Cardiff Amnesty meeting of 2019 we discussed the worrying situation facing Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and Narges Mohammadi, who both announced a three day hunger strike starting on Monday 14th January. Both Nazanin and Narges have been denied access to the medical treatment they have requested by the Iranian authorities.

Nazanin has long requested access to a neurologist and a mammographic examination. It is clear that three years of false imprisonment has left her in fragile health. Furthermore, Nazanin spent her 40th birthday on Boxing Day in Evin prison, causing her mood to become bleak.

Narges has suffered from serious seizures since here imprisonment in 2015 and her calls to see a doctor have been denied. Narges was sentenced to 16 years in prison for her peaceful work organising women’s rights, and her work campaigning against the death penalty in Iran.

Access to medical treatment for prisoners is enshrined in Iranian law, and the Iranian authorities behaviour is in direct violation of their legal commitments. You can read Nazanin’s and Narges’ joint open letter here. The Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, issued a summons to the Iranian ambassador on Monday over the issue while six senior United Nations human rights experts condemn Nazanin’s incarceration.

International

After three stressful days Richard Ratcliffe, Nazanin’s husband, said in a statement that both women had suspended their hunger strike after the prison authorities had allowed them treatment at outside hospitals.

If you feel outraged at this situation then please consider making a stand for Nazanin here and Narges here. If you have any more questions about Nazanin, Narges, or other human rights defenders, please feel free to get in touch with the Cardiff Amnesty Group at amnesty.cardiff@btopenworld.com

Cardiff Amnesty AGM
Cardiff Amnesty will also hold its annual general meeting on Monday 11th February at 7.30pm at Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff. The business section will be short, with a report of what we’ve done in the past year and the election of group officers. Most importantly we want to get your views on where the group goes next including:

  • What do you want to see at group meeting?
  • How do we expand the social side of the group?
  • What do we want to do to raise funds this year?
  • How do we attract more people to meetings and events?
  • How can we engage more people via social media?
  • How do we work more closely with local university, college and school Amnesty groups?

Please come along in February and have your say. If you can’t join us in person we would still welcome your views so please drop us an e-mail at amnesty.cardiff@btopenworld.com and let us know what you think.

Please feel free to spread the word far and wide, and I hope to see as many of you next month as possible.

Main image courtesy of the Centre for Human Rights in Iran, our thanks to Natasha Hirst, who provided the photograph of Richard Ratcliffe featured above.

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