The hunger striking prisoner Mohammad Khodkam was transferred from the quarantine section of Bukan Prison in West Azerbaijan Province to the infirmary on 7 January due to a significant drop in his blood pressure and subsequent loss of consciousness, the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) has learned.

The deterioration of Khodkam’s physical condition due to severe weight loss has been described as alarming.

The prisoner began his hunger strike on 23 December 2023 in protest at a harsh prison sentence and a cash fine handed down by Branch Two of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Mahabad, West Azerbaijan Province, on 9 December 2023.

Khodkam, a resident of Bukan, was arrested by the Criminal Investigation Department on 9 June 2023 and sentenced to 17 years in prison and fined 1.8 billion rials (approximately 3,600 USD) on drug-related charges.

Following the start of his hunger strike, Khodkam was transferred to solitary confinement on 24 December and denied the right to communicate with or meet his family.

The Criminal Investigation Department claimed to have found a package of drugs belonging to Khodkam near his family’s home. However, he has consistently denied these allegations since his arrest, and the authorities at the prison and the local court in Bukan have yet to respond to his request for a fair trial.