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Two Additional Women Summoned To Prison For Calling On Khamenei To Step Down

Iranian activists, Shahla Jahanbin (R) and Shahla Entesari

Two additional names who signed the second statement of Iranian women calling for Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, to step down have been summoned to the "Revolutionary Court" to serve their sentences.

The court is based in Tehran's infamous Evin prison.

On October 15, the Campaign to Defend Political and Civil Prisoners reported that Shahla Jahanbin and Shahla Entesari, two female signatories to Khamenei's resignation statement, were sentenced to four years and two months in prison with a two-year ban on membership in parties, political and social groups each, in October 2019 by Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court, headed by Judge Iman Afshari.

A "telephone call summoned Entesari and Jahanbin" last Wednesday.

The report states that the two civil activists' sentences were reduced to 44 months' imprisonment for being mothers and for a lack of a criminal record.

The report says, "the sentence was further reduced to 33 months' imprisonment for the defendants' decision to refrain from contesting the verdict.”

According to Article 134 of the Islamic Republic's Penal Code, 27 months' imprisonment will apply to each of them.

Human Rights Activists News Agency, HRANA, also reported that Jahanbin and Entesari were summoned to Evin Prison last November and released on five trillion rials (about $119,000 on official rate) bail each.

In June 2019, 14 civil and political activists inside Iran issued a statement calling for Ali Khamenei's resignation. Following their request, 14 female civil and political activists issued a similar statement demanding Khamenei step down.

"Four decades of this theocracy has eliminated the rights of half of the country's population," the women's rights activists asserted on August 5, 2019, calling for "civil and non-violent measures" to leave behind "this anti-women system" and compose a new constitution for Iran.

At the time, Giti Pourfazel, an attorney and one of the signatories in Iran, told Radio Farda in an interview on Tuesday “twenty million other Iranian women could count themselves as the fifteenth signatory."

All 14 activists reside in Iran, which makes their actions extremely dangerous for their freedom and safety.

In addition to Jahanbin and Ansari, Giti Pourfazel and Zahra Jamali were also sentenced to four years and two months in prison and a "two-year ban from membership in political parties and social groups" each.

Pourfazel was also released on five trillion rials bail. However, Jamali, arrested in September 2019 at her sister's house, is still behind bars in the women's ward of the notorious Evin Prison.

"We, 14 civil rights and women's rights activists, are determined to continue our combat until victory through civil and non-violent measures. Like other pioneers [of non-violent freedom fighters], we go ahead by chanting 'no to the Islamic Republic,' the letter said.

Furthermore, the letter singled out "systemic tyranny and irresponsibility" as the leading cause of Iran's problems and the country's current chaotic situation.

"In a world that women in most countries move side by side with men in science, economy, culture, arts, and politics, under the Islamic Republic women still fight for their basic human rights," the letter stressed.

Nosrat Beheshti, Shahla Entesari, Shahla Jahanbin, Zahra Jamali, Ezzat Javadi Hessar, Nargess Mansouri, Farangis Mazloum, Kimia Norouzi Saber, Parva (Sakineh) Pachideh, Giti Pour Fazel, Fatemeh Sepehri, Maryam Soleimani, Soussan Taherkhani, and Fereshteh Tasvibi were the signatories to the letter.