Iran’s Supreme Court has upheld a 16-month prison sentence against Osman Esmaeili, a labour activist and former political prisoner, the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) has learned.

Today, Esmaeili received a notice from Branch Two of the Enforcement of Judgements Office of the Public and Revolutionary Prosecutor’s Office in Saqqez, Kurdistan Province, ordering him to appear in court within ten days to begin serving his sentence.

Esmaeili was tried on 18 June in the first branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Saqqez, presided over by Judge Javad Mostafaei.

In September, the court sentenced him to a total of 39 months in prison on charges of “actions against national security” and “propaganda against the state”.

The verdict stated that Esmaeili received 31 months and 15 days for “membership” of the Komala Kurdistan’s Organisation of the Communist Party of Iran on the charge of “actions against national security” and a sentence of seven months and 15 days of imprisonment for “propaganda against the state”, related to his presence in the burial ceremony for Jina Amini.

Esmaeili had previously shared part of his verdict on his Facebook page, highlighting that the court had revised the sentence to 16-months of imprisonment.

The activist said: “The court took into account the mitigating factors stipulated in Article 38 of the 2013 Islamic Penal Code, including Mr Esmaeili’s age and marital status. Referring to the recent amendments and Article 6 of the 2019 Law on the Reduction of Imprisonment in conjunction with Article 37 of the 2013 Islamic Penal Code, the court has revised the sentence to a 16-month prison term, factoring in the previous days of detention.”

A prominent figure in the Kurdish labour rights scene and a former political prisoner, Esmaeili was arrested by security forces in Saqqez on 8 February 2023 and taken to the Ministry of Intelligence detention centre in Sanandaj, Kurdistan Province.

After 70 days in detention, Esmaeili was provisionally released from Saqqez prison after on bail of 10 billion Iranian rials – nearly 20,000 USD.

Over the years, Esmaeili has faced multiple detentions and imprisonments due to his advocacy for workers’ rights and his role in organising events in Saqqez to mark International Workers’ Day.