Iran: Journalist Marzieh Amiri to serve a five-year jail sentence

Journalist Marzieh Amiri will have to serve a five-year jail sentence for "spreading propaganda" against the Iranian regime, her lawyer announced on Tuesday, January 8. The International Federation of Journalists strongly condemns the jailing of journalists for doing their work, and urges the Iranian regime to annul the ruling against Marzieh Amiri.

Marzieh Amiri Credit: Facebook

Marzieh Amiri’s lawyer, Amir Raeesian, told the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) that Amiri’s case had been upheld by the Department of Enforcement in the Judiciary and that she has to serve her five-year sentence.

Marzieh Amiri was arrested in May last year, a day after attending an International Workers’ Day rally in Tehran. She was covering the story of those arrested during the protests, amongst whom Keyvan Samimi, the Chief Editor of Iran Farda magazine. Initially, Amiri was sentenced to 10.5 years in prison and 148 lashes in August last year. The IFJ condemned the arrests and made an appeal to the authorities for Samimi’s and Amiri’s release.

In November, Iran’s Appeals Court ruled to reduce her sentence to a five-year term, on charges of "gathering and colluding propaganda against the system" and "disturbing public order." Neither Amiri or her lawyer were present during this hearing.

Staying informed has become a struggle for the Iranian people, as the regime appears to have gone on a crusade against press freedom. It has shut down internet access, harassed Iranian journalists working abroad, and jailed journalists based on allegations of “spreading propaganda.”

IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: “We condemn the decision of the higher court to uphold Amiri’s five-year sentence and not to allow her to attend the Appeals Court session. We demand her immediate release and call on the authorities to immediately stop the media crackdown.”