Updated: Apr 21, 2022
Endangered Scholars Worldwide continues to condemn the ongoing unwarranted detention of Iranian, dual national, and international scholars. Morad Tahbaz, a 66-year old US-British-Iranian triple citizen and co-founder of conservation charity, the Persian Wildlife Heritage Foundation in Tehran, was detained in January 2018 on false charges of espionage on the basis that his charity had set up cameras to monitor the critically endangered Asiatic cheetah. His colleague and the charity’s co-founder, sociologist Kavous Seyed Emami, died on February of 2018, in prison.
Tahbaz was expected to be released in March 2022 with two other detainees, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and Anoosheh Ashoori. However, as of April 19, 2022, Tahbaz is still imprisoned. The Iranian authorities unilaterally broke the agreement when they sent Tahbaz back to Evin prison.
Many who have been released from Evin prison have written about their experiences there, so we know a great deal about the inhuman conditions that exist there, but we often do not know what the crimes are they are accused of having committed which are more often than not trumped up.Moore-Gilbert, an Australian-British anthropologist, who was jailed in Evin Prison for two years on espionage charges and is now free, describes the human rights violations she witnessed and experienced, such as endless interrogations, torture, sexual harassment, solitary confinement, and denial of basic medical care.
Endangered Scholars Worldwide condemns the ongoing unwarranted detention, persecution, conviction, and mistreatment of Iranians academics and researchers and calls for the immediate release of Morad Tahbaz, as per Iran’s agreement with the UK government, as well as the release of all the other intellectual and academic detainees held under false charges of espionage. ESW also asks the UK government to continue to put pressure on the Iranian government for the immediate and unconditional release of Morad Tahbaz.
Roxanne Tahbaz holding a protest outside the UK Foreign Office to urge the government to bring her father, Morad Tahbaz, home.