Iranian authorities have detained a prominent journalist accused of communicating with groups outside Iran and issued an indictment against four teachers’ rights activists, amid a crackdown on the media and civil and political activism.
Journalist Keyvan Samimi was arrested for holding meetings with a "deviant sect supported by the Zionist regime," state TV reported on April 20, in reference to the Islamic Republic’s arch-foe Israel.
Samimi’s arrest comes before he was set to address the virtual conference "Dialogue to Save Iran,” which is scheduled to take place on the Clubhouse app on April 21-22.
Also on April 20, sources told IranWire that the Public and Revolutionary Prosecutor's Office in the north-western city of Marivan, in Kurdistan province, indicted four members of the Teachers' Union.
They are accused of "propaganda activity against the regime,” "participation in illegal gatherings" and "preparation and publication of images of illegal gatherings on channels opposed to the regime.”
The activists, Tahsin Mustafa, Aram Qaderi, Sivan Suleimani and Aram Mohammadi, have been summoned and arrested multiple times in the past for engaging in peaceful union activities.
The Islamic Republic faces one of the biggest threats since the 1979 revolution from widespread protests sparked by the September 2022 death of a young woman, Mahsa Amini, in police custody. She had been detained for allegedly wearing her headscarf improperly.
The authorities have cracked down hard on the women-led protest movement, killing more than 520 people and unlawfully detaining over 20,000 others, activists say. Following biased trials, the judiciary handed down stiff sentences, including the death penalty, to protesters.
According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, at least 95 journalists have been arrested since the eruption of the protests.