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IRAN: No word on jailed human rights lawyer nearly a month into hunger strike

October 23, 2010 |  7:44 am

No one has any word on the health of jailed Iranian human rights attorney Nasrine Sotoudeh, who began a hunger strike four weeks ago.

Nasrine sotoudeh She's now been held in solitary confinement for more than 45 days, ever since her Sept. 4 arrest, and is said to be on hunger strike, according to her husband, Reza Khandan.

Khandan said the last time he spoke to his wife was in a brief phone conversation over two weeks ago. She told him she had begun a hunger strike 11 days earlier, on Sept. 25.

"It lasted three seconds, because as soon as she mentioned the words 'hunger strike' and 'threat' her phone was cut off," he said.

Sotoudeh is among the small cadre of lawyers dedicated to defending dissidents, minorities and women's who've run afoul of Iran's legal system. Earlier this year, she became enraged when one of her clients was executed without her knowledge.

Now she finds herself inside the very prison were many of her clients have been held, and her supporters are growing worried for the petite mother of two.

"Since the beginning of her arrest she has been in solitary confinement," Khandan said. "We have not managed to get permission to meet her or find some middlemen to convey the messages of those who want her to end her hunger strike."

Khandan said her case has already been passed on to the Revolutionary Court, and that by law she should be granted an open trial. "There is no point to keeping her in jail, let alone in solitary confinement," he said.

-- Los Angeles Times

Photo: Nasrine Sotoudeh in a 2007 photo. Credit: Newsha Tavakolian / Polaris Images for the Times

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