In early October, Dr. Ahmadreza Djalali, a physician and lecturer in Emergency and Disaster Medicine, was training a group of professionals when he was arrested by representatives from the Ministry of Intelligence. He was held at Evin Prison, detained for seven months – three of which were in solitary. He was prevented access to an attorney and reportedly subject to intense interrogation and forced to sign statements under emotional and psychological pressure. In December he was forced to sign a confession to being a spy for a hostile government. He refused and was informed he would be charged with “enmity against God” which carries a death penalty. In protest he began a hunger strike. Eventually he was taken to court without an attorney and informed by the judge that his charge could result in a death sentence. In October that is what resulted – his chosen attorney was not allowed to defend his case, his witnesses were not called nor their materials presented and he was sentenced to death.
CCS has written the President of France, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Chancellor of Germany, the President of Italy and the President of the European Union Commission requesting their support for this case and requesting a reversal of this sentence.
Attached is a copy of the letter that was sent to each of these individuals on behalf of Dr. Djalali and his situation.
November 7, 2017
The Honorable Angela Merkel*
Willy-Brandt Strasse 1
Republic of Germany
Dear Chancellor Merkel:
The Committee of Concerned Scientists is an independent organization of scientists, physicians, engineers and scholars devoted to the protection and advancement of human rights and scientific freedom for colleagues all over the world. We are asking for your help in the case of Dr. Ahmadreza Djalali, who has been sentenced to death in Iran on October 21, 2017, after a grossly unfair trial.
Professor Djalali, a citizen of Iran currently living in Sweden, is a medical doctor and lecturer at Stockholm Medical University – the Karolinska Institute, where he received Ph.D. in Disaster Medicine in 2012. Following his arrest in Tehran in April 2016, he was held in solitary confinement in Evin prison, subjected to abuse, denied access to a lawyer of his choice, and forced to sign a confession. We are unaware of any evidence supporting the accusations against him.
Attached is Dr. Djalali’s letter from Evin prison that details his interrogation and trial.
Please do whatever you can to prevent such a profound injustice that threatens the life of a respected scientist and medical doctor.
Joel L. Lebowitz, Paul H. Plotz, Walter Reich, Eugene M. Chudnovsky, Alexander Greer
Co-Chairs, Committee of Concerned Scientists
*(This letter also sent to the the President of France, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Chancellor of Germany,
the President of Italy and the President of the European Union Commission)