Iranian judge arrested in Romania

Gholamreza Mansouri
Short Url
Updated 16 June 2020

Iranian judge arrested in Romania

  • Reporters Without Borders (RSF), an NGO dedicated to protecting journalists, is also supporting Mansouri’s prosecution

LONDON: An Iranian judge notorious for his mistreatment of journalists has been arrested in Romania.
Gholamreza Mansouri, who served as a prosecutor at Evin Prison in Tehran before being appointed as a judge at Iran’s press court, is reviled by journalists for his repression of independent reporting. He is said to have jailed 20 journalists in one day in 2013.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is advocating for his prosecution, and has documented numerous claims by journalists that Mansouri was directly responsible for their torture.
For example, the IFJ says Mansouri ordered the detention and torture of family members of a Persian TV channel’s president, Saeed Karimian, to prevent it from broadcasting. Karimian was later assassinated in Turkey.
“Crimes against journalists can’t go unpunished ... Now it’s time for justice,” said IFJ Secretary-General Anthony Bellanger.
He urged Romania’s government to “respond to the call of victimised journalists and prosecute Mansouri for his human rights violations.”
Reporters Without Borders (RSF), an NGO dedicated to protecting journalists, is also supporting Mansouri’s prosecution.
RSF on Friday said it had submitted papers to the German prosecution service related to Mansouri’s case.

FASTFACT

Gholamreza Mansouri said to have jailed 20 journalists in one day.

He is also wanted in Iran on charges of corruption. Tehran has requested his extradition, accusing him of taking €500,000 ($562,624.50) in bribes for favorable judgments.
But Kaveh Moussavi, an Iranian lawyer in exile in Oxford, said: “As a signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights, Romania cannot extradite Mansouri to Iran, a country that practises capital punishment.”
Moussavi argued that Mansouri should be handed to Germany for trial — a country known for extraterritorial prosecution of human rights violations — rather than be sent back to Iran.
“He must be taken back to Germany to face trial for torture, hostage taking and terrorism,” Moussavi said.


Palestinian official Erekat in critical, stable condition

Updated 9 min 46 sec ago

Palestinian official Erekat in critical, stable condition

  • Erekat was receiving artificial respiration in the intensive care unit at Israel’s Hadassah Medical Center
  • He was a senior adviser to late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and current President Mahmoud Abbas

JERUSALEM: Senior Palestinian official Saeb Erekat remained in critical but stable condition in an Israeli hospital Tuesday, his family said, after he was infected with the coronavirus.
Erekat’s family told the official Palestinian news agency WAFA that he was receiving artificial respiration in the intensive care unit at Israel’s Hadassah Medical Center.
Erekat, 65, has been one of the Palestinians’ most recognizable faces over the past several decades, serving as a senior negotiator in talks with Israel. He was also a senior adviser to late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and current President Mahmoud Abbas.
He was hospitalized Sunday at the Jerusalem hospital despite the Palestinian leadership’s decision earlier this year to sever ties with Israel over plans to begin annexing parts of the occupied West Bank as part of President Donald Trump’s Mideast plan.
The hospital said Monday that Erekat’s case was extremely challenging in light of his history of health problems, including a lung transplant in 2017. It said he suffered from a weak immune system, and a bacterial infection in addition to COVID-19.