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Iranian Political Prisoner 'In Grave Condition'

Arjang Davudi (file photo)
Arjang Davudi (file photo)
Iranian political activist Arjang Davudi, who launched a hunger strike in jail 50 days ago, is in a grave condition, his wife has told RFE/RL's Radio Farda.

Davudi was arrested in 2003 on charges of founding a political group called The Freedom Movement of Iranians. He is currently serving a 10-year sentence in Tehran's Gohardasht prison.

He began the hunger strike to protest the alleged violation of his rights.

"Arzhang‎'s friends informed me that he was taken to prison hospital last night," Davudi's wife, Nazanin Davudi, told Radio Farda this week. She said she was told Davudi could neither talk nor open his eyes.

She said the authorities had asked Davudi to sign a paper to the effect that he would be responsible for his life: "They asked my husband to sign a paper which said if anything happened to him, he would be responsible for it, but he refused to do so."

She added that the reason her husband went on hunger strike was that he was denied the right to make phone calls and placed in solitary confinement without any good reason by Gohardasht prison warden Ali Haj-Kazem: "He wrote a letter of complaint against Haj-Kazem to which no one paid any attention."

Nazanin Davudi said although she tried to visit her husband to persuade him to end his hunger strike, the prison warden prevented her from seeing him.

"Arzhang‎ is being punished for his hunger strike," she said. "If anything happens to him, the prison warden is responsible."