TEHRAN: A dissident Iranian journalist has been arrested again, barely three months after his release from prison following two years of incarceration, his family said on Tuesday.
Keyvan Samimi, known for his activism, was arrested on Thursday, a family member said.
“We still have no further information on the (security) service responsible for his arrest or his whereabouts,” they added.
The 74-year-old was released from Semnan Prison in January after being sentenced to three years in jail for “plotting against national security” in December 2020.
Since his release, he is known to have met activists and other political figures, including reformist former President Mohammad Khatami.
In January, Samimi’s family said he also faced a separate case in which he was accused of “association against the security of the country.” They did not elaborate.
In February 2022, Samimi was provisionally released from prison and returned home due to health issues but was re-incarcerated in May after being suspected of engaging in political activities.
In December, Samimi sent a message from his cell in support of the protest movement that shook Iran following the September 16 death of Mahsa Amini.
The 22-year-old Iranian Kurd died in the custody of the morality police in Tehran after her arrest for an alleged breach of the country’s dress code for women.
A former editor of the now-banned intellectual magazine Iran-e-Farda (Iran Tomorrow), Samimi has been imprisoned several times, before and after Iran’s 1979 revolution.
Also, Iran has charged two prominent actresses for publishing pictures of themselves flouting the country’s dress code, just weeks after announcing a crackdown on breaches, local media reported.
Police in Tehran have referred the case against Katayoun Riahi and Pantea Bahram to Iran’s judiciary, accusing them of “the crime of removing the hijab in public and posting photos on the internet,” the Tasnim news agency said.
If prosecuted, the pair could face fines or prison terms.
Earlier this month police said they would begin using “smart” technology in public places to crack down on women defying Iran’s compulsory dress code.
Last week, photos of Bahram, 53, went viral after she posed without a headscarf at a film screening, while Riahi, 61, posted several photos taken in public places around Tehran in which she did not wear a headscarf.
On April 16, authorities said they had closed 150 commercial establishments whose employees were not complying with the dress code.
Bahram and Riahi have won several awards at Iran’s leading cinema event, the Fajr International Film Festival.
In November, Riahi was released on bail after more than a week’s detention for posting photos to Instagram in solidarity with the Amini protests, showing herself without a headscarf.