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17 July 2009


Passport seizure of  

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Abdolfattah Soltani,

a lawyer at the Bar of Tehran and a founding member of the Defenders of Human Rights Centre (DHRC).



Source :      





According to the information received, on October 2, 2009, Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani's passport - delivered two weeks before - was seized by the Iranian authorities. The latter was therefore prevented from leaving Iran for Germany, where he was to receive the Nuremberg International Human Rights Award on October 4, 2009.

In addition, Mr. Soltani was summoned at the Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic for October 5, 2009.

The Observatory vehemently denounces these obstacles to Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani’s freedom of movement, and recalls that the 1998 United Nations Declaration on human rights defenders provides for the “responsibility of individuals, groups and associations to promote respect for and foster knowledge of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels”.

The Observatory is further concerned with the summons ordered to Mr. Soltani, all the more that the latter was accused of having acted against national security


Background information:


On June 16, 2009, Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani was abducted and his whereabouts remained unknown until July 7, 2009 when he was located in section 209 of Evin prison after having been authorised to contact members of his family.

First detained in section 240 of Evin prison, in Tehran, he was subsequently transferred to section 209, where political prisoners are detained.

On August 26, 2009, following the decision of the Security Branch of the Revolutionary Courts, Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani was released on payment of USD 100,000, following 70 days of arbitrary detention, including 17 days in solitary confinement without access to a shower.

Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani remains prosecuted for actions against national security. No information could be obtained as to when he is going to be brought to court.




Please write to the Iranian authorities and ask them to:

  1. Guarantee in all circumstances the physical and psychological integrity of Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani and all human rights defenders in Iran;
  2. Guarantee in all circumstances the freedom of movement of Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani;
  3. Put an end to all acts of harassment, including at the judicial level, against Mr. Abdolfattah Soltani and all human rights defenders in Iran;
  4. Conform in any circumstances with the provisions of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted on December 9, 1998 by the United Nations General Assembly, in particular its article 1, which states that “everyone has the right, individually or in association with others, to promote the protection and realization of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels”, its article 5(c), which reads that “everyone has the right, individually and in association with others, at the national and international levels, [...] to communicate with non-governmental or intergovernmental organizations”, and its article 12.2 which provides that “the State shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration”;
  5. Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Iran.


  • Leader of the Islamic Republic, His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed Ali Khamenei, The Office of the Supreme Leader, Shoahada Street, Qom, Islamic Republic of Iran, Faxes: + 98 251 649 5880 / 251 7 774 2228, Email: / /
  • President Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Presidency, Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: + 98 21 649 5880. Email:
  • Head of the Judiciary, His Excellency Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, Ministry of Justice, Park-e Shahr, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: +98 21 879 6671 / +98 21 3 311 6567, Email:
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Manouchehr Mottaki, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Abdolmajid Keshk-e Mesri Av, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, Fax: + 98 21 390 1999, Email:







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