I am Farzad Kamangar, Also known as Siamand; a teacher whom used to work for the Iranian governmental education system in the Village of Kamyaran with 12 years experience of teaching. One year before my arrest, I was busy teaching at the Karvdanesh institute. I also was a member of the board of directors of the teachers of Kamyaran association in the Kurdistan branch and up to the point of disbandment of the association and just before the activities of the association was banned by the government; I was the head of PR.
Also I was a member of the guild writers of a cultural/educational monthly called Royan, which later came to be under the siege of the governmental education system and was later blocked. For some time I was also a member of the environmental society in Kamyaran and from 2005 onwards I begun with my human rights activities and eventually came to be one of the writers for the human rights association. I traveled to Tehran in august 2006 in order to follow up on recovering of the health of my sick brother, whom also is a political activist in Kurdistan, and there I was arrested. On the same day I was transferred to an undisclosed location. It was a basement without and ventilation, claustrophobic and dark, the cells didn’t have any floor just plain dirt, nothing was there neither a mattress nor a cover or anything else. It was very dark there; I was taken to another room. While they were writing down my details they asked me of my origins as soon as I said “Kurd” they flogged me all over my body with a hose looking whip. Also because of religion I had to endure profanities insults and battering. I was even severely battered because of the Kurdish ringtone that I had on my mobile. They would tie my hands and put me on a chair and put heavy pressure on various sensitive parts of my body…they would remove my clothes with force and threatening me with rape with a baton or sticks.
My left foot was brutally injured at this location and because of the simultaneous hits to my head as I was electrified I passed out and ever since I gained my conscious I have lost the sense of balance in my body and now shake without any control. They would chain my feet and with electric shocks who was created by small appliances that they had tied to my back, they would shock different sensitive areas of my body, they pain was immensely agonizing. I was later transferred to the villainous 209 lockup of Evin prison. I was blindfolded as soon as I entered and in the entrance corridor (floor level- left-hand side further up than the room for execution of orders) I was put in a small room where I was battered severely with punches and kicks there as well. The following day, they transferred me to Sanandaj prison until they would arrest my brother. From the moment I entered the lockup I was facing profanities, insults and battering. I was not even allowed the usage of toilet facilities, until I was forced to wet myself. After enduring a lot of the physical and psychological pressure I was once again transferred to the 209 lockup. In the rooms on the first floor (the green interrogation rooms) I was interrogated and battered and tormented.
After all the tortures I had to endure, they were forced to take me to a doctor on the Sunday of 27th of August 2006 which was placed in connection to the interrogation rooms, where the doctor recorded the evidential residue bruises of the tortures, floggings and battering, which were clearly visible on my back, neck, head, rear, thighs and feet. I spent the two months of august and September in solitary confinement cell number 43. Because of the magnitude of the tortures and torments I had to endure I had to food strike for 33 days, they started to harass and threat my family, in order to free myself from the torture and to demonstrate against the ill treatment and the pressures against my family, I threw myself down the stairs of the first floor in order to commit suicide.
I spent close to a month in solitary isolation which smelled horribly in the end of the 113 section of the first floor. During this period I was not allowed to have visits nor telephone calls with any member of my family. During the 3 months of solitary confinement I was not allowed to go out in the free air. After enduring these months they moved me to a bigger cell, cell number 10, a cell intended for several persons, I spent close to two months there. Still I was not allowed to have any contact with a lawyer or my family. In the beginning of January of 2007 I was transferred from the 209 lockup in Tehran to the Intelligence Agency’s lockup in Kermanshah, situated in the Naft centre, without any allegations made against me or a verdict in court. The lockups were unyielding small and dark and all kinds of crimes were committed there.
They removed all my clothes and after having battered me, they gave me dirty and stinking clothes and with kicks and punches in the hallway of the lockup took me to the room of the security officer in charge and from there to a another corridor which they entered in a small door. There was a really small cell hidden far away from everybody else and so far that even my screams couldn’t reach anybody else. This cell was 1m x 0.6m x 0.5m. Two small light bulbs were hanging from the roof. There was no ventilation. The cell used to be a toilet before and was really stinking and cold. There was one really dirty duvet in the cell. Every time I would wake up unexpectedly I would hit my head on the wall. The cell was dreadfully cold. In order to breathe sometimes I was forced to lay my face down on the ground and breathe through the small spring between the door and the floor. During my sleep or rest the guards would periodically knock hardly on the door in order to disturb my rest or they would turn of the lights. Two days after my entrance to the prison I was taken to the interrogation room and without posing one single question they started to kick and punch me and used profanities and insulted me however they could. Afterwards I was taken back to my cell, they turned on the radio an put it on the highest volume in order to disturb my rest and concentration, I was allowed to go to the toilet two times during 24 hours. I was also allowed to wash myself once a month. The following are examples of the tortures that I suffered in the Kermanshah lockup;
1. Playing “Football”; this was a term used by the interrogators, they stripped me of my clothes and 4 or 5 persons would surround me and with punch and kicks pass me around between them. If I fell to the ground they would laugh at me and hit me savagely while I was on the floor.
2. They forced me to stand on one leg for hours and hold my hands up high and if I got tired and would slack or drop my leg or arm they would beat me up.
3. During interrogation I would be punched and slapped.
4. The basement of the lockup which was covered from the main corridor to the door which lead to the free air by trash and breadcrumbs in order to hide it form others, was another torture room which they would take me to during nights, there they would tie my hands and feet to a bed and using a whip which they called “Zolfaghar” they would flog me under my feet, my thighs and my back. The pain was incalculably unbearable and I could not even walk for days.
5. They had a cold room, because it was cold and wintertime, they would take me there in the morning for the reason to be “interrogated” but in fact incarcerate me there till the dawn.
6. In the Kermanshah lockup the usage of electrical shocks to the body was implemented, and shocks were inflicted to various sensitive parts of the body.
7. I was not allowed to use toothbrush or toothpaste, I was given diminutive amount of leftover food which stank and was completely unfit for human consumption.
Even at the Kermanshah lockup they prohibited me from having any visits and went so far that they even arrested the girl that I was interested in. Problems were created for my brothers and they were arrested. Because of the cell the duvet and the dirty and stinking unhygienic clothes, I got skin problems (fungus infection) and I wasn’t even allowed to visit a doctor. For the reason that the enduring of the tortures had become harder I was forced to food strike for 12 days. The last 15 days of my lockup they changed my cell to a cell that was more smelling and dirty where there was no heating facilities. Every day I had to endure insults and beatings to the extent that I even passed out one day for the punches I got to my testicles. One night in the torture room (basement) they undressed me and threatened me that they were going to rape me right there and in order to be released from torture I banged my head hard on the wall. They forced me to confess to emotional matters and relationships and…forced me. The sound of sighs and screams could be heard and sometimes they would commit suicide.
March 18th 2007 I was transferred back to the 209 lockup in the Evin prison, even though I was put in the multiple person cell number 121, I still wasn’t allowed to have any visitors. They still tortured me both physically and psychologically as arrestment of family members or encumber me from contacting them, profanities and insults and beating me.
My Case was after several months of uncertainty brought up in the revolutionary court the 30th branch in May 2007. The interrogators threatened me that with all their power they would try to get a verdict for my execution or longtime imprisonment. In case my innocence would be proved in court and I would be released they would take vengeance outside of prison. They had a strange hate towards me as a Kurd, journalist and a human rights activist. No matter what was going on they never stopped torturing me.
The revolutionary court in Tehran announced that the case was not going to be brought up in Tehran and the case was sent to the court in Sanandaj. Every time the support of the people or the human rights associations would be heard for me and against my arrestment, the tortures got more frustrated and would increase the pressures on me. In august 2007 I was transferred to the Sanandaj Lockup a place that has become “the worst nightmare” which I will never be able to forget and it will haunt me for the rest of my life. Even though according to their own law I did not have new accusations, they too started my physical and psychological terror as soon I entered.
The Sanandaj lockup had a main corridor and 5 side corridors, in the last corridor and in the last cell, they placed me. They kept changing my cell all the time, until the day that the head of the lockup along with some other people started to beat me without any reason, dragged me out of my cell and on a stair that had 18 steps and led to the basement and the interrogation rooms. They hit me on the backside of my head, I suddenly fell to the ground and I fainted, they dragged me down those 18 steps, how they did it I don’t know. I opened my eyes. I could feel a colossal pain in my face and head and my sides, my conscious provoked another set of beating with punches and kicks all over my body, after approximately one hour of battering me they dragged me up the stairs and to the second hallway and into a small cell and threw me in, I was once again beaten by two henchmen until I was unconscious. When I came to conscious again I could hear the evening calling for prayers. My face and clothes were all bloody. My face was swollen; my whole body was black and blue. I didn’t have the power to move, after a few hours they threw me in a shower with force in order to clean my face and clothes.
They put on my wet clothes and because of the serious determent of my health and while blindfolded I was checked by some of the intelligence agency’s agents. The following day they were forced to take me to a doctor’s office outside of the prison. Because of the damages to my tooth and jaw I didn’t have the power even to eat for a couple of days. During the nights they opened the windows in the cell so the cold would get to me. They refused to give me a duvet hence I was forced to wrap the carpet around me.
I was not allowed to free air time, visitation or telephone calls and again and again I was beaten in the interrogation rooms in the basement. I was forced to food strike for five days. Many times they smashed my head against the walls in the basement. They would escort me from my cell to the basement with punches and kicks. I didn’t have any accusation in Kermanshah nor in Sanandaj.
The ill-famed torture “Chicken kebab” (Djojje Kabab) was a term used by the head of the intelligence prison in Sanandaj and he himself preformed it most of the nights that he was there. He tied the hands and the feet threw me on the floor and flogged me.
One could hear the cries and the screech of the other prisoners which mainly seemed to be female, just the sounds itself was damaging to ones soul. They left the windows open during the nights; they would wet my clothes in the basement after a series of beatings and take me to my cell, wet, beaten and now battling the cold. I was forced to wrap myself in the dirty duvet that was in the cell.
I spent close to two months in solidarity confinements of Sanandaj, my case was once again dismissed and I was once again transferred back to Tehran. Almost 8 months of solitary isolation, physical and psychological torments has affected me immeasurably.
After one nights lockup in 209 security lockup I was transferred to the 7th section of Evin prison, where drugs is considered as a recreational hobby and from 18th of November I have been transferred to the Rajay Shahr Prison, a Prison that is ranked a high security prison and has prisoners that has committed murder, kidnapping and armed robbery etc…