Free anti-death penalty activist Atena Daemi

Atena Daemi is an anti-death penalty campaigner and a women’s rights activist serving a seven-year prison sentence in Iran for her peaceful activism. Her crime? Handing out anti-death penalty leaflets and criticizing Iran’s execution record on social media.

In 2014, aged 26 years, Atena was blindfolded and arrested outside her home. For the first 28 days of her detention, she was held in a cell infested with insects and with no toilet. She said her interrogators offered to grant her easier access to the toilet in exchange for her “co-operation”. Unfortunately, this was just the beginning of Atena’s mistreatment.

Later, while serving her seven-year prison sentence, Atena was moved – secretly and unlawfully – to a prison where guards harassed her and encouraged other inmates to attack her. While on hunger strike in May 2017, she coughed up blood, suffered severe weight loss, nausea, vomiting and kidney pain. She now urgently needs specialized medical care, including for a gum condition, which is not available inside prison.

Despite all this, Atena refuses to stop fighting.

These arrests, detentions, threats and intimidations are the sacrifices we need to make to gain our freedom and rights… we should never stop resisting or standing up against oppression. No victory comes easily, and no injustice lasts forever. – Atena Daemi

Atena is an inspiration to human rights defenders in Iran and around the world. And she’s also a regular young woman, who loves nature and spending time outdoors. She must be freed.

Sign this petition, calling on Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to release Atena from prison.