Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Esha Momeni has not been involved in any illegal action…

Original Article: http://www.we-change.info/spip.php?article3064
Nasrin Sotoodeh
Translated by: Leila

Change for equality-Elnaz Ansari: The Arrest of Esha Momeni, a volunteer of the One Million Signatures Campaign, is the latest reaction of security agents in regards to women’s movement. Within the two years of the commencement of the One Million Signatures Campaign, roughly 50 volunteers and activists involved in this Campaign have been arrested. In none of these cases, the assigned judges could identify the request for “Change for Equality” as an illegal movement; however Esha Momeni was arrested for this reason.

She was arrested while driving. Her family is under a lot of pressure not to talk with the media. Nasrin Sotoodeh, well known attorney of law, in her conversation with “Change of Equality” mentioned that the arrest of Esha Momeni is an illegal reaction and she warned the officials regarding the illegality of their actions.

Nasrin Sotoodeh stated: “The major issue with this arrest is the disregard for the basic principles of an arrest which requires the accuser to deliver the summon to the accused, Esha in this case, and the fact that under cover intelligence agents disguised as traffic agents stopped her car and arrested her. This ambiguous action is one of the main civil right violations that applies to Esha Momeni’s case.”

Sotoodeh described dangers of this kind of actions and said: “When we face these types of actions more often, it means we are in tremendous danger due to obstinate agents who do not follow the rules and regulations and their activities pose a threat to civilians.”

The above mentioned lawyer stated that Esha Momeni`s activities of recording and interviewing with campaign activists are not illegal and she further noted: “Ms Momeni was doing her research for an academic project which does not violate any laws, and these types of activities if it is not in the streets or public places does not require any formal permit. As long as the films are kept in a personal archive, they are considered personal properties which you can have in any home and no one is allowed to confiscate them.”

Sotoodeh also commented on the discriminatory laws against woman in regards to the situation of the members of the campaign who were interviewed by Esha, and said: “Under the laws of any land, criticizing the law is not illegal in any part of the world including Iran. In regards to the women’s rights, university professors, journalists, lawyers, and civilians have an aversion to these laws, even some judges identify these laws as injustice. If the criticizing of the law were to be illegal, thousands of people should be arrested”.

After 12 days of Esha’s arrest, there is no information available regarding her condition in the 209 section of the Evin prison and what are the charges against her.
She is one the One Million Signatures Campaign volunteers and has held a few photo exhibitions focusing on women. Esha Momeni interviewed with few of the campaign members in Iran in order to make a short film about the strength of the women rights’ activists in Iran for her master thesis.

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