Manijeh Najm Eraghi

More than 400 activists have issued a statement calling for the release of Manijeh Najm Eraghi, a jailed Iranian writer, translator and women’s rights activist.

The statement condemns the arrest of Najm Eraghi by the Islamic Republic and demands that the government “stop fabricating cases against women’s rights activists, writers, intellectuals, journalists, labour activists, students, teachers, lawyers and social and political activists.”

Manijeh Najm Eraghi, who was also the secretary for the Iranian Writers Association, was arrested last Sunday and transferred to Evin Prison.

She was previously arrested in September of 2010 and released on bail after three days. The court charged Najm Eraghi with being a member of the Iranian Writers Association, mailing the association’s announcements and participating in the memorial service for Iranian poet Ahmad Shamloo and slain writers Mohammad Mokhtari and Mohammad Jaffar Pouyandeh. Najm Eraghi was sentenced to one year in jail.

Following the controversial elections of 2009 and the widespread crackdown on protesters who alleged that the elections were rigged, numerous non-government organization such as the Iranian Writers Association have become the target of persecution and their members have been arrested and given prison sentences.