Branch One of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Piranshahr, West Azerbaijan province, has sentenced Sunni Kurdish cleric Zana Khoshaman to two years and one month in prison.

According to the verdict handed down to the cleric on 15 June, he was accused of “acting against national security” through his “membership” of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDPI).

Security forces arrested Khoshaman and his wife Sinour Ghaderi in Piranshahr on 20 October 2022.

While Ghaderi was released after two days, Khoshaman was detained for about three months and then released from Naqadeh prison on bail of 30 billion Iranian rials – nearly 60,000 USD.

Khoshaman, from the village of Pasveh in Piranshahr, was the imam of several mosques in different villages in the towns of Piranshahr, Naqadeh and Oshnavieh.

The summoning, arrest and sentencing to prison and flogging of Sunni Kurdish clerics has intensified in recent months following the widespread support given by some Sunni Kurdish clerics to anti-government protests and popular demands.

Since late March, the Special Clerical Court of Hamadan has sentenced at least nine Sunni Kurdish clerics, Hossein Ali-Moradi, Saber Khoda-Moradi, Arman Sadeghi, Seyyed Jalal Akbari, Loghman Amini, Ebrahim Karimi Nanaleh and Zana Khoshaman to suspended prison sentences, lashes and the revocation of clerical status for speaking out in support of anti-government protests in Sanandaj, Saqqez, Dehgolan and Sarvabad.