Iran: Release Yasaman Aryani

In prisons across Iran, there have been people who have tested positive for COVID-19. This raises grave concerns for prisoners in Iran, including women’s rights defender Yasaman Aryani. Take action and demand she is released now.

Twenty-four- year-old Yasaman Aryani is serving a lengthy prison sentence for campaigning against forced veiling. Her punishment is part of a wider crackdown in Iran on women who have stood up against discriminatory and degrading forced veiling laws.   

In several prisons across Iran, there have been confirmed cases of COVID-19. This raises grave fears that prisoners, like Yasaman, are at risk of contracting the virus. Prisoners are at particular risk because they are unable to take the same social distancing and hygiene measures as those outside of prison.

Throughout Iran, prisoners are raising alarms about the authorities’ failure to sufficiently protect prison populations from the spread of the virus. They have pleaded with officials to address overcrowded, unhygienic and unsanitary conditions that put them at greater risk of COVID-19 infections. Some prisoners have been denied adequate medical care, which would leave them more vulnerable to the effects of the virus if they contracted it.

Yasaman is among hundreds of prisoners of conscience jailed in Iran. Her sentence was recently reduced from 16 years to nine years and seven months’ imprisonment on appeal. But no one should spend a single day in prison for peacefully exercising their rights.

Help us fight for Yasaman’s release. Sign the petition, call on the Iranian authorities to:

· Immediately and unconditionally release Yasaman Aryani from prison

· Immediately and unconditionally release from prison all other women’s rights defenders detained for peacefully protesting against forced veiling