British-Australian academic has repeatedly attempted suicide in Iranian jail -rights group

Dr Kylie Moore-Gilbert speaks during an interview from 2017. (Reuters)
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Updated 07 May 2020

British-Australian academic has repeatedly attempted suicide in Iranian jail -rights group

  • Academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert as been detained in Iran since September 2018
  • She's being held in solitary confinement in a two to three meter cell in the Evin prison

British-Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert has repeatedly attempted suicide while detained in Iran, the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI), a New York-based advocacy group, said on Thursday.
Moore-Gilbert, a specialist in Middle East politics at the University of Melbourne, has been detained in Iran since September, 2018, the statement said.
British and Australian media have reported that she has been sentenced to 10 years in jail by Iranian authorities.
The Iranian judiciary could not immediately be reached for comment.
“Kylie’s cries for help are so loud and desperate that even the walls of one of Iran’s most notorious prisons can’t silence them,” CHRI Executive Director Hadi Ghaemi said in a statement.
“The Australian government should heed her pleas and immediately facilitate her access to basic rights that the Iranian government has been denying her for nearly two years, and immediately get her back home where she belongs.”
Moore-Gilbert is being held in solitary confinement in a two to three meter cell with a toilet in the Evin prison in Tehran, Reza Khandan, an activist and husband of Nasrin Sotoudeh, an activist lawyer currently imprisoned in Iran, told CHRI.
Moore-Gilbert is forced to wear a blindfold anytime she is taken out of the cell, Khandan told CHRI.
Iran has stepped up detentions of foreign and dual nationals amid a protracted standoff with Western powers, after the United States withdrew from an international agreement to curb Iranian nuclear activities and reimposed sanctions on Tehran in 2018.
Separately, journalist and film maker Mohammad Nourizad attempted suicide in a prison in Mashhad, his wife Fatemeh Maleki said in an interview with BBC Persian on May 2.
Nourizad was under pressure because authorities would not give him furlough, transfer him to a prison closer to his home or allow him regular phone calls, Maleki said in the interview.
Nourizad was imprisoned last year for signing an open letter, along with 13 others, calling on Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the highest authority in Iran, to resign.


Czech Republic reports 11,984 new coronavirus cases, highest daily tally

Updated 6 min 12 sec ago

Czech Republic reports 11,984 new coronavirus cases, highest daily tally

  • The number of people who died of the COVID-19 disease rose to 1,619
  • The government is to meet at an extraordinary session at 8:00 a.m. local time (0600 GMT) to discuss the epidemiological situation

PRAGUE: The Czech Republic reported 11,984 new cases of coronavirus for Oct. 20, the highest daily tally on record, as the country is struggling with a surge in recent weeks.
The number of people who died of the COVID-19 disease rose to 1,619 from 1,513 over the past 24 hours in the country of 10.7 million, Health Ministry data showed on Wednesday.
The data on casualties are being assigned to a number of previous days as reports come in with a delay.
The government is to meet at an extraordinary session at 8:00 a.m. local time (0600 GMT) to discuss the epidemiological situation. Health Minister Roman Prymula had hinted on Tuesday that tougher anti-epidemic measures were on the way.