Evin Prison

Mohammad Hossein Sohrabirad, an Iranian political prisoner, says he is protesting the lack of adequate medical care in prison by going on a drug strike and refusing his medication.

The Jaras opposition website reports that Sohrabirad fell victim to heart complications during his interrogation and it is likely that “refraining from taking his medicine may make his heart problems more critical.”

Sohrabirad is serving a four-year sentence, after being arrested during the widespread protests that sprang up after the contested re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2009.

According to Jaras, the political prisoner’s mother has written to the Tehran Prosecutor to express her grave concern for her son’s health.

She writes: “My son has suffered severe heart complications, and the facilities at the prison infirmary are not sufficient for his treatment. They have asked for your permission to transfer him to a hospital, and to my surprise, I hear that you have refused.

“How can a responsible individual remain indifferent to a 25-year-old’s struggle for life?” she asks. “Is it really not important for you if my son dies like Hoda Saber?”

Reza Hoda Saber, another Iranian political prisoner, died from a heart attack on Sunday after a 10-day hunger strike. His family maintains that the authorities are responsible for his death because they delayed his transfer to hospital after the onset of his attack.

Sohrabirad’s mother warns the prosecutor that the true “anti-Revolutionary and anti-Islam” forces are not the political prisoners but rather those “officials that create protesters by their actions.” She says her son has not been allowed one day of furlough since two years ago.

Jaras reports that Evin Prison physicians have told the prosecutor’s office that Mohammad Sohrabirad is too ill to serve out his sentence, but the office has refused to grant him sick leave or even a transfer to hospital.