Iran Postpones Alaei Verdict

A verdict in the trial of Doctors Kamiar and Arash Alaei was postponed Wednesday due to an Iranian holiday, as reported in the Albany Times-Union. Reporter Paul Grondahl writes:

Prosecutors rested their case after an unorthodox, one-day secret army trial in Tehran’s Revolutionary Court on Dec. 31. The brothers’ attorney, Masoud Shafie, said the proceeding deprived them of due process.The next likely date for a verdict is Saturday, when courts are in session, said Jonathan Hutson, a spokesman for Physicians for Human Rights. The Boston-based organization is spearheading an international campaign calling for the immediate release of the brothers. They call the charges bogus and politically motivated, based on the brothers’ attendance at international AIDS conferences.

The brothers have been charged by Tehran prosecutors with attempted overthrow of the Iranian government and a number of charges the Iranian military court refuses to divulge. The Drs. Alaei were instrumental in orchestrating some of Iran’s first AIDS treatment programs, and their participation in overseas health conferences raised the suspicion of Iranian officials. Dr. Kamiar Alaei is a PhD student at the University at Albany School of Public Health.Grondahl also referenced the countless Alaei supporters who have contacted the Iranian mission to the UN this week to demand the doctors’ release:

Health care professionals mounted an aggressive phone-in campaign this week to the Iranian mission at the U.N. and more than 4,000 people from 85 countries have signed a petition calling for the doctors’ release.

Please continue your efforts to show Iran that treating AIDS is not a crime. View PHR’s “Picture the Docs” slideshow, print out your own poster and add your own photo.(Cross posted on Iran, Free the Docs.)

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