The death of Akbar Mohammadi on July 30th at Evin prison and the death of Fiez-alah Mahdavi in Rajae City Prison a short while after drew public attention once again to the horrific conditions within the Islamic Republic (IR) political prison system and its use of savage torture on political prisoners.


These two political prisoners died in prison while protesting prison conditions and the regime’s treatment while the IR’s media apparatus portrays its prisons as “hotels” and its solitary cells as “suites”.


Considering the heavy exposure waged to uncover the stories of these deaths, especially abroad, the IR’s prison administrators have become panic-stricken and have attempted to divert public opinion from their crimes by fabricating lies. In doing so, for example, they claimed that “Akbar Mohammadi was sent to the prison’s clinic to be treated but due to his own insistence was returned to his cell thereupon had heart failure and died. The IR’s claims concerning Fiez-alah Mahdavi’s death is even more ridiculous. They claim that he hung himself using his own clothes!!


In order to feed their lies to people, the director of Evin prison came up with a scenario in which the term prisoner is changed into “help-seeker” implying that the prisoners have approached the prison “seeking” “help” for their pain. Then, to tie up this fictitious scenario, Evin dungeon is being called Evin Hotel giving the warden the appearance of a hotel proprietor: “…the help-seekers are considered our guests”. Knowing that the existence of solitary cells and the long-term detainment of prisoners in these cells have been exposed in society, he goes on by claiming there are no “solitary cells” in Evin. They are now 12 square meter “personal units” equipped with complete facilities such as “showers, toilets, dining areas and beds”.


In respect to the death of Akbar Mohammadi, while knowing that Mohammadi died as the result of mistreatment by Evin’s clinic and that reportedly he was beaten with his mouth being taped, the warden states: firstly, “Evin’s health and medical department has a 48 bed hospital including two surgery rooms, men’s and women’s wards, labs, first aid, radiology, ultrasound, emergency, dentistry, physiotherapy… centers.” And secondly, “the physical punishment of help-seekers is illegal”. Thus, while denying the existence of “physical punishment” of so-called “help-seekers”, he calls the guards “psychologists” from the forces of “the early revolutionary days” who were raised “within the heart of the revolution”. In other words, the warden himself must logically be one of the forces of “the early revolutionary days” and must have been raised throughout the bloody and shameful era of the Islamic Republic, i. e., one of those lumpen and criminal elements of the 80s who carried out the merciless genocide of thousands of communists and freedom-loving combatants within IR prisons. It is of no surprise, then, that such ignorant and monstrous individuals would think that they could change the reality of things by changing their names. He even goes on by saying, ”we should not speak highly of our hotel, our guests must do so”.


The fact of the matter is that despite all of the IR’s lies and efforts to portray the regime’s dungeons as hotels, the conditions in IR prisons are horrific and inhumane. And the deaths of both Akbar Mohammadi and Fiez-alah Mahdavi are only a glimpse of this reality and the twisted lie of Evin’s warden in calling Evin a “hotel” does not change it.


Meanwhile, it is the duty of all genuine revolutionary and militant individuals and organizations to learn about and expose the conditions within IR prisons thus giving voice to the shouts of all those revolutionary and combatants savagely kept in captivity in prisons all across the country.