August 8, 2010
Ms Ashtiani’s lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei has arrived safely in Norway and his wife, Fereshteh Halimi, was released Saturday night on bail on charges of “concealing a suspect”.
Hard to hold her on those charges when her husband is on video in Turkey.
She said nothing about being tortured.
I think when they found that my husband was out of Iran and they couldn’t reach him and I wouldn’t be a good hostage any more, that’s when they released me.
They kept telling me, ‘If you tell us where your husband is, we will set you free. And I was answering, ‘I don’t know where he is, so how can I help you?’
Me, my father and my brother were all released on bail. Now we should wait for our trial. I don’t know if I’m banned or forbidden from leaving the country. So the future is really unclear.
Norway Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store statement:
Ever since the Norwegian authorities learned that Mr. Mostafaei had fled to Turkey, Norway has, like a number of other countries, been concerned that he should be given protection and not returned to Iran. It is regrettable that the pressure on courageous defence laywers such as Mr. Mostafaei is so great that they are compelled to flee. They are doing an extremely important job in Iran. Norway is committed to supporting human rights defenders in Iran and will continue to do so. We call on Iran to respect human rights and fulfill its international obligations.
Mostafaei evidently spoke at a news conference in Oslo and is aware that his wife has been released. Don’t know if Norway can officially help Mostafaei’s family flee.
ICAS and ICAE want to thank the Norwegian government for its prompt intervention in the case and for giving refuge to Mr Mostafaei. These developments are positive steps in the case to save Sakine. We hope that we can continue to widen our campaign on an international level, that we can free Sakine soon and that we can push back the Islamic regime of Iran.