Ebrahim Yazdi

Ebrahim Yazdi, the octogenarian Iranian political prisoner and secretary general of the reformist party Freedom Movement of Iran, will stand trial on Sunday March 13. He will face charges of “activities against national security, propaganda against the Islamic Republic and establishment of the Freedom Movement,” Al-Arabiah reports.

Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, Yazdi’s attorney, expressed optimism that “the trial will be carried out in a just and fair manner.”

Yazdi was arrested last September along with other executive members of the Freedom Movement of Iran for attending a funeral and “an illegal Friday prayer.”

Every other person detained that day was soon released but Yazdi remains in prison. He is reportedly the oldest political prisoner in Iran.

Khalil Yazdi, Ebrahim Yazdi’s son, told Al-Arabiah: “According to reports that we have received he is generally well and is staying in good morale.”

“About a month ago he was transferred to a safe house under the control of intelligence forces but later, when his health condition deteriorated, he was hospitalized and now he has been returned to the same place,” the son added.

Khalil Yazdi also mentioned that incarceration is very hard on his father, an 80-year-old man who has just undergone heart surgery and also suffers from prostate cancer.

On February 20, a group of Iranian political and social activists wrote a letter to the head of Iran’s judiciary, Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani, calling for the release of the leader of the Freedom Movement, which they describe as having been a major player in bringing the Iranian Revolution to fruition in 1979.

They described Yazdi as “one of the most enduring veteran political activists in Iran and spoke out against his “uncalled for and illegal” treatment by the government.

Two months ago, 130 international academics and intellectuals also wrote to Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, to ask for the release of Ebrahim Yazdi and all other political prisoners in Iran.

The letter, signed by prominent figures such as Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on human rights as well as Noam Chomsky, Jurgen Habermas and John Esposito, stated that disregard for human rights principles will only lead to the loss of trust between the government and the people, and throw up roadblocks to national dialogue and reform.