Iranian security forces detained the mother of Kurdish woman political prisoner Zeynab Jalalian at her home in Maku, West Azerbaijan province, for several hours on 21 February.

The Ministry of Intelligence in Maku interrogated and threatened Gozal Hajizadeh over her statements calling on the international community to pressure Iran to release her daughter.

Hajizadeh was released after several hours.

On 20 February, a video of Hajizadeh, in which she called on human rights organisations to work for the release of her daughter, received widespread reaction on social media.

“After the video was widely published on social media, security forces raided the political prisoner’s family home and arrested her mother, who is over 70 years old”, a member of Jalalian’s family told the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN).

According to this source, security forces interrogated Jalalian’s mother over the video and the people who recorded it.

Security interrogators have threatened Hajizadeh and told her that she had no right to interview the media or publish news about Jalalian’s condition.

The family member added that although she was released after several hours of detention, Jalalian’s family home was still being watched by the security forces.

Security forces had previously detained, interrogated, and threatened the political prisoner’s father, Ali Jalalian, for 24 hours over providing information to the media about his daughter. His personal phone number had been blocked for several months afterwards.

Jalalian was exiled to four various prisons in Iran during the past year.

She has been under constant pressure from security interrogators since her illegal transfer to Yazd Prison on 9 November 2020. All her rights as a prisoner have been taken away from her.

Occasionally, she is only allowed to contact her parents by phone and speak to them in Persian very briefly. She is denied her right to receive visits.

During the 14 years she spent in the harsh conditions of different prisons in the country, she suffered from various diseases and is in poor physical condition due to being denied medical treatment.

Jalalian, who was born in 1982 in the village of Dim Qeshlaq in Maku, was arrested in Kermanshah in February 2008.

She spent several months in solitary confinement and endured severe physical and psychological torture before her trial.

Later, an Islamic Revolutionary Court sentenced her to the death penalty on charges of “acting against national security” and “enmity against God” (moharebeh) through “membership in the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK)”.

In 2011, an appeal court reduced her death penalty to the life sentence. She was later transferred to Khoy Prison in West Azerbaijan province.

During the years in prison, Jalalian has developed a number of diseases, including vision impairment, pterygium, thrush, and asthma.

In 2016, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention called on the Islamic Republic of Iran to immediately release Jalalian and to take all necessary measures to compensate the damages imposed on her without delay, and in accordance with international standards.

According to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, deprivation of Jalalian of her liberty was arbitrary and in violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and that Iran had a duty to prosecute those responsible for violating the rights of this Kurdish political activist.