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  • Jan 24, 2024

Hamideh (Shimin) Zeraei

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Shimin (Hamideh) Zarei, 39 years old, born in Rasht and currently residing in Tehran, was detained on the fortieth day of the death of "Hoda Nafaji," one of the victims of the "Mahsa" revolution or the "Women, Life, Freedom" movement. She had gone to Hesarak, Karaj, to commemorate Nafaji, where she was arrested by plainclothes officers using severe violence.

Known as Shimin among friends and family, she lived in Rasht until the age of 18 and migrated to Tehran after marriage. Shimin separated from her husband at the age of 21 and lived as an independent woman in Tehran.

After the separation, she continued her education; attended university; and obtained a bachelor's degree in accounting. Shimin, a third-semester student in financial management at the University of Sciences and Research, boycotted the university alongside other students in October 2022 to protest the suppression of students.

She also worked as an accountant in a private company.

She spent more than three months in Kuchak Prison in Karaj after her initial arrest on November 2, 2022, and was released on February 7, 2023.

Threatening calls and occasional pursuits of her continued, even after her release from prison. Shimin's personal car had been confiscated during her arrest, and for months, she was harassed to surrender her vehicle.

Furthermore, this civil activist received a summons in May 2023, accusing her of propaganda against the Islamic Republic system in favor of opposition groups and organizations. She refrained from going to the courthouse.

Eventually, on Saturday, June 27, she mysteriously disappeared, and later, it was revealed that during a call she had from Sepah (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) information, she had gone to the location they told her for returning her car and was arrested again.

Shamin is currently still in Kuchak Prison and, through an audio file, reported incidents of sexual violence during her second detention. After that, she refused to appear in court, especially as she would be required to wear compulsory hijab.

Her sentence, issued on November 16, 2023, by the Branch One of the Revolution Court in Karaj, headed by Judge Mosi Asif al-Hosseini, was to one year in prison; two years of supplementary exile to Rasht; two years of travel ban; and two years of prohibition from presence in cyberspace, all on charges of propaganda against the system.

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