After spending one week at in Evin prison in Tehran, Mohammad Mostafaei — the attorney famous for defending juvenile offenders in death penalty cases in Iran — was released on July 1 on a one billion rial bail (more than $100,000). Mostafaei was arrested the previous week for his human rights activism during the Iranian protests, which erupted in the wake of the announcement of Iran’s election results in mid-June. The accusations against him include charges of conspiracy and propaganda, as well as an alleged intention to harm “state security,” even though his activities have been entirely peaceful and guided by his dedication to human rights in the country.
After his release, Mostafaei publicly thanked his supporters and fellow activists across the world and said that this experience has strengthened his resolve to fight against injustice. However, Mostafaei is still in direct danger of prosecution, imprisonment and even torture for defending and publicly expressing his beliefs. A potential conviction and incarceration would be a huge blow to human rights in Iran. It will also be a major setback in the fight against the execution of juvenile offenders in the country, which Mostafaei has led for so long.