Saturday, April 25
Latest News
  1. Home ministry: At least 114 killed in Nepal quake
  2. US: Russia failing to fully implement Ukraine ceasefire
  3. Kerry urges Yemen rebels and their allies to enter talks
  4. Ex-Yemen leader urges rebel allies to heed UN, pull back
  5. Iraq lacks DNA results to test body of 'Saddam deputy'
  6. Family: Syria's sacked political spy chief dead
  7. Officials: 14 Somali, Afghan immigrants killed by train in Macedonia
  8. UNICEF: At least 115 children killed in Yemen since March 26
  9. Athens stocks jump 4.4% on hopes of EU deal
  10. EU clears 19 genetically modified products
  11. Seismologists: Strong earthquake rattles New Zealand
  12. EU says progress 'not sufficient' for Greece debt deal
  13. World leaders join silence at ceremony marking Armenian genocide
  14. Jordan's crown prince at UN takes on militant 'dark world'
  15. US officials: Iranian ships turn back from Yemen
  16. Pakistan PM affirms Saudi 'solidarity' despite Yemen snub
  17. Three British plane spotters released in UAE
  18. UK regulator fines Deutsche Bank $340 mn over Libor
  19. Saudi tightens mall security after alert
  20. Markit: Eurozone business activity slows in April

Iranian parliament calls for inquiry over blogger's death

Jan. 6, 2013 12:41 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 7, 2013 1:00 P.M.)
DUBAI (Reuters) -- Iran's parliament called on Sunday for a special inquiry to investigate the death in detention of a blogger whose posts criticized the country's leadership.

In a case that provoked international outrage, Sattar Beheshti was arrested in his home on October 30 after receiving death threats, and died some days later, having complained of being tortured.

"It is necessary that the responsible agencies ... exercise more supervision and seriousness with regard to these bitter events and carry out a special inquiry of the case of the death of Sattar Beheshti," parliament said in a report read out on Sunday.

The report also recommended training for all staff in detention units, the installation in detention centers of CCTV equipment and the regular inspection of facilities.

It is unclear what a special inquiry would involve and whether the government will follow up on the recommendations. But the report demonstrates the extent of concern within parliament over the case and the assembly's emphasis on human rights before presidential elections in June.

Authorities have arrested seven people suspected of involvement in Beheshti's death, three of whom are still in custody.

His death also led to the dismissal of the head of Tehran's cyber police unit for "failures and weaknesses in adequately supervising personnel under his supervision."

The Tehran prosecutor's office said the blogger may have lost his life as a result of a form of shock, but that the medical committee investigating it said the exact cause was impossible to determine.

Fellow prisoners in Evin prison in Tehran said Beheshti was hung from the ceiling of a cell and beaten, opposition website Kaleme reported after his death.

Iran has rejected criticism of its human rights record in the past as being political and motivated by Western opposition to the Islamic state. But its leadership has taken action on other allegations of mistreatment of prisoners.

In 2009, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ordered the closure of the notorious Kahrizak detention center following the death in custody of three detainees after they took part in anti-government protests in 2009.

Media is tightly controlled in Iran and blogging has become one of the few outlets for criticizing the state.
Ma'an News Agency
All rights reserved © 2005-2015