Alireza Rejai

More than 200 Iranian social and political activists have issued an announcement condemning the “illegal arrest” of Alireza Rejai, a senior member of Iran’s National Religious Council and the Iranian Journalists Association.

The signatories of the announcement, which was published today on the Jaras opposition website, say the government is “silencing the voice that’s demanding democracy” by arresting Rejai and numerous people like him.

The activists write that “the economic and political crises and the dissatisfaction of the Iranian people will not be resolved through threats and intimidation of the opposition.”

“Iran is in danger, and the autocrats are denying the suffering of the people and the country’s fate by incarcerating political and labour activists, journalists, lawyers, writers and thinkers,” the announcement warns.

Intelligence ministry officials arrested Rejai in Tehran two weeks ago for “security crimes” as part of a wave of increased pressure on national-religious activists.

Rejai is the political editor of a number of reformist papers that are all banned by the Islamic Republic: Jameeh, Khordad, Toos, Neshat and Asr-e Azadegan.