Nooshin Jafari, an Iranian photographer, and journalist has been detained under unknown conditions and with unknown charges. The Iranian Judiciary has not yet commented on the arrest but the accusations against Jafari being raised in social media by state soft war actors are alarming.
Iran Human Rights, an international non-profit human rights organization that documents the cases of abuse in Iran confirms that Nooshin Jafari has been arrested and several Iran-based journalists have also confirmed the arrest in the social media.
“Six agents did the arrest, five men and a woman”, a source with the knowledge about the arrest told Iran Human Rights, “in the arrest warrant, it was written ‘Crimes against the National Security’”.
Jafari’s friends and colleagues have announced that the security forces arrested Jafari on Monday the 5th of August. They have also raised concerns as some state-affiliated social media users are linking Jafari to a dissident account that published material against the Islamic Republic.
Friends and colleagues of Jafari are concerned because they say she is not behind the dissident account and these accusations are alarming as it could be used as a pretext to the prosecution of Jafari.
In recent days, many users in the twitter are using Jafari’s name as a hashtag to raise their voice against her arrest and express concerns about the unofficial allegations of the state-affiliated users against Jafari.
So far the allegations are only made by state-affiliated users known as soft war actors of the state but no judicial official has yet confirmed these allegations. The Iranian judiciary has also not commented on the arrest yet and the charges being brought against Jafari are yet unknown.
Twitter is filtered in Iran, as well as many other social networks and websites.
Jafari was once before arrested during the Green Movement of 2009. An Etemad Daily journalist then, she was released after 28 days.
Iran has arrested hundreds of journalists in the last four decades. Currently, dozens of journalists and writers are serving sentences in prison on various charges including propaganda against the government, spreading lies, waging war against God and acting against national security.
Other Iranian journalists have also been arrested awaiting trial or sentenced to prison in recent years, including Marzieh Amiri, Hamed Aynehvand, Hengameh Shahidi, Kiumars Marzban, Pouyan Khoshhal, Reza Golpour, and Mohammad Hossein Rostami.
Iran ranks 70th on Reporters without Borders 2019 World Press Freedom Index. RSF, the Paris-based media watchdog calls Iran “one of the world’s five biggest prisons for journalists.