February 28, 2024

On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Human Rights Activists, (HRA), Peace Mark Monthly asked Dr. Hadi Ghaemi, the director of International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, (ICHRI), about the work and contributions of HRA.
Ghaemi: “In my opinion, the greatest feature of HRA that has led to the continuation of its activism is being informed and reporting from inside of Iranian prisons. In addition, HRA has been able to follow up, attend and report on all kinds of human rights violations in Iran, and it has been able to follow up and report on the demands of religious minorities, ethnic minorities and various strata of the Iranian society.”
How would you describe HRA after 10 years of activism and, if you want to highlight one positive feature of this organization, what would it be?
Overall, the organized human rights activism in Iran has increased significantly during the past decade. Human Rights Activists (HRA) is one of the organizations that has a share in this growth and has been able to work towards promoting a human rights culture in Iran and be a part of the growth of this movement.
In my opinion, the most important feature of this organization is reporting from inside of Iranian prisons, and I believe that HRA has been very successful in drawing attention to political prisoners.
As you know, the civil society and specifically groups and organizations defending human rights in Iran face many difficulties, and therefore many of them are not able to last. Having said that, what do you think is the feature that leads to the survival of a human rights organization and its continued activism? In this regard, what difference could you mention specifically about HRA?
The most important feature for the permanence of a civil organization is that it truly roots and grows within the civil society. This becomes much more complicated and difficult to achieve given that the Iranian government does not allow these organizations to operate normally within the country and is always oppressing them; yet they could persist as long as these organizations are able to assess the needs of the society, attract new generations and address the whole society.