Human Rights House of Iran with deep regrets reports the death of political prisoner Mohsen Dogmechi who succumbed to cancer in Rajai Shahr prison. The Islamic Republic, judiciary and prison authorities are accountable for Mohsen’s passing due to lack of medical care. His passing is regarded as an “execution” resulting from the denial of medical care and negligence of the part of prison officials. The lack of medical care, barring medical prison leave, blocking delivery of medicines, putting an ailing prisoner under severe duress such as shackling him to his bed are among the atrocious treatment political prisoners have been subjected to in the past years. Many prisoners who were not officially sentenced to death have lost their lives directly as a result of these grim circumstances. Among those who needlessly lost their lives in prison are Amirhossein Heshmatsaran, Omidreza Mirsyafi and Akbar Mohammadi. Mohsen Dogmechi, a merchant at Tehran’s bazaar was arrested on September 7, 2009 and initially incarcerated in Evin prison then transferred to Rajai Shahr prison. He lost his life on March 28 due to negligence and lack of medical care in both Evin and Rajai Shahr prisons. Maryam Alangi, the wife of the late Mohsen Dokmechi spoke of her husband’s condition before his death to Human Rights House of Iran. “He was suffering from poor health since the first months of his imprisonment. He was afflicted with a heart condition and lost 20 kilos (44 pounds) in one week. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and an operation was performed on him. The doctors recommended chemotherapy and after a very long waiting period, he was finally allowed to start the procedure. His treatment was to begin on January 15, 2010, but the prison officials prolonged it until the beginning of January. Notice how long it took for the necessary chemotherapy to be administered. Basically 4 rounds of his chemotherapy were delayed.” In her interview with Human Rights House of Iran, Mrs. Dogmechi added, “when he was finally admitted to the infirmary and his tests and x-rays began, his hands and legs were shackled to the bed. Mr. Dogmechi protested and asked the authorities to untie him, saying that he would rather not receive medical attention than to endure these harsh conditions. After his protest, the officials sent him back to prison. Three weeks went by with his health dangerously declining day after day. Finally prison officials were forced to transfer him to Tehran Modares Hospital due to his ailing condition. He spent three weeks in the hospital where he lost his life on March 28th. Mr Dokmechi was 58 years old and according to the doctors, this illness does not kill someone of his age this fast.” Saeed Pourheydar, member of Human Rights House of Iran, who spent time in prison with Mohsen Dogmechi and was his cellmate said, “Mohsen Dogmechi who was sentenced to 10 years prison in exile at Rajai Shahr prison, spent some time before his transfer in Evin prison’s ward 350. In October of last year when his illness was diagnosed his physical health was rapidly deteriorating. Not only did the prison officials at Evin neglect him but also judiciary officials worsened the situation and transferred Mohsen to Rajai Shahr prison despite the fact that his medical needs could not be met there. This caused his health to deteriorate even more rapidly. In Evin, not only did prison officials ignore Mohsen’s medical needs but they told his prison mates to refrain from sending him to the prison infirmary. Tehran’s Attorney General despite having knowledge of Mohsen’s dire condition and severe illness, allowed security agents to block his medical care.” Regarding the charges against Mohsen Dogmechi, his wife said, “Mr. Dogmechi was arrested because he was giving financial aid to the families of political prisoners. This was among his charges for which Judge Salavati presiding over Branch 16 of the Islamic Court sentenced him to 10 years in prison and exile to Rajai Shahr prison.” The prison health care availability in Iran is substandard to other places in the world. At the same time, security officials block health care to political prisoners while they are behind bars and when they are out of prison. Mohammad Mostafai, spokesperson for Human Rights House of Iran said, “the death of Mohsen Dogmechi is as a direct result of the negligence and irresponsible behavior of the judiciary. All defendants and accused people must be cared for mentally and physically. The prison organizations, working under the judiciary, are responsible for the care of all those behind bars. With attention to the fact that when the judiciary denies medical care to a prisoner leading his/her death when the death could have been prevented with proper care, this is considered murder. According to section 291 of Regulations for care of criminals and according to section 295 of the Islamic Sentencing Laws, if a prisoner has a life threatening illness, his penalty must be terminated so he can receive care. The security and intelligence ministry agents cooperated with judiciary and prison officials, and interfered with Mohsen’s right to get medical care. As such they are partners responsible and directly accountable for Mohsen’s untimely death.” Human Rights House of Iran blames Mohsen’s death on the series of decisions handed down by the judiciary followed by actions by security agents and prison officials blocking his medical needs. Today other political prisoners are suffering in desperate need of medical care. The Islamic Republic is held fully responsible if anything happens to these prisoners. Among prisoners in desperate need of immediate medical care are Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, Hashem Khastyar, Mansour Osanloo, Fatemeh Rahnama and Farah Vazhan. Human Rights House of Iran


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