There’s a mix of good and bad news on the status of prisoners detained by the government in Iran, including some who have recently been sponsored by local members of Parliament.
On Wednesday, news broke out that Mehdi Memar Rast, a medical student in the country, was released on bail. Rast and Mohsen Rezazadeh Gharagholou are being politically sponsored by West Vancouver MP Patrick Weiler. But Rast's trial will go forward and he still may be condemned to prison or death.
According to the office of North Vancouver MP Jonathan Wilkinson, one of the people he is sponsoring, Dr. Hamid Ghareh Hassanlou, has had his death sentence revoked. Reza Arya, sponsored by Coquitlam-Port Coquitlam MP Ron McKinnon, also appears to have had his death sentence dropped.
“This is a temporary reprieve, however, as the regime could decide at any time to condemn him to death a second time, which has been done before,” said Cynthia Bunbury, constituency director for Wilkinson.
At the same time, people are being asked to boost the signal for Mohammad Ghobadlou, who has been moved to solitary confinement with the expectation that his execution is imminent. Sponsor John Aldag, MP for Cloverdale-Langley City, has called for Ghobadlou’s name to be amplified in hopes of stopping his senseless execution.
Following a joint statement from a group of nine B.C. MPs earlier this month, the Women’s Liberal Caucus in Ontario is also sponsoring 21 political prisoners in Iran. The purpose of the endorsements is to bring the plight of detainees to the forefront and show support for the people of Iran.