Mohammad Soleimaninia

PEN International’s Writers in Prison Committee has issued a statement calling for the unconditional and immediate release of Mohammad Soleimaninia, the Iranian translator and internet expert imprisoned by Iranian authorities.

In a statement issued on April19, PEN condemns the arrest of Soleimaninia, who in addition to translating the novel “Funny in Farsi” was the director of U24, a website much like LinkedIn that connects Iranian professionals.

Soleimaninia was arrested by the Iranian Intelligence Ministry in January 2012 and held incommunicado for more than two months. His website U24, which has brought Iranian professionals together since 2007, appears to be the reason for his arrest.

He reportedly began a hunger strike on April 2 to protest his situation, which has raised concern for his well-being.

Soleimaninia’s imprisonment has also been challenged by Reporter’s Without Borders, which called for his immediate release on April 12.