October 16, 2013 — In September, Iranian President Rouhani granted amnesty to 12 political prisoners as he made his way to an annual session of the United Nations General Assembly. But former Evin prison inmate and 2009 IWMF Courage in Journalism Awardee, Jila Baniyaghoob, cautions this isolated act does not signify democratic momentum.
“We heard a lot of noise, inside and outside of Iran,” she said. “But we have more than one thousand political prisoners. The judiciary officials have promised the release of more than 80 prisoners, but there is no follow up news. Chances are, they may never be released.”