Kurdish teacher Zara Mohammadi arrested in Iran

Kurdish teacher Zara Mohammadi has been arrested in Iran. The co-founder and leader of the cultural association Nûjîn was taken to a prison in Sine (Sanandaj).

Kurdish activist Zara Mohammadi has been arrested in Sine (Sanandaj). A few days ago, the Iranian Supreme Court rejected without merit an appeal filed by the 29-year-old's defence. Mohammadi was ordered to surrender to the security authorities within ten days to be taken into custody. She complied with this request and said goodbye to her companions beforehand.

Zara Mohammadi has a master's degree in geopolitics and is co-founder and director of the cultural association Nûjîn, which promotes civil society and educational initiatives in Sine and the surrounding area. In May 2019, she was arrested by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and transferred to an intelligence-run prison. Previously, she taught Kurdish to children in villages near Sine.

In July 2020, an Iranian revolutionary court sentenced Zara Mohammadi to ten years imprisonment for "forming a group against national security". On appeal in February last year, the original sentence was reduced to five years and Mohammadi was subsequently released on bail. But despite a detailed justification for an appeal, the Supreme Court judges rejected the request for a review of the sentence.

Numerous appeals for the lifting of Mohammadi's sentence, including an initiative by more than ninety intellectuals from various countries, whose signatories include American linguist Noam Chomsky, Kurdish social theorist Abbas Vali and Turkish sociologist Ismail Beşikçi, and which also calls for an end to the criminalization of Kurdish and all other non-Persian languages, were also ignored by the Iranian regime and its judiciary, as were appeals by Amnesty International and the United Nations.