Hossein Ismaeili

Beats Covered:
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Iranian security forces arrested Iranian photojournalist Hossein Ismaeili on October 11, 2022, while he was covering protests sparked by the death of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, after morality police arrested her for allegedly violating the country’s conservative dress law.

Esmaeili, who is from the city of Sabzevar in Razavi Khorasan province, is a Tehran-based freelance photojournalist for a variety of local news websites and newspapers. His work has appeared in the semi-independent online photojournalism news website Asrarnameh

The exile-run news site HRANA reported on Esmaeili’s arrest, citing the Iranian Photojournalists Association. 

A source familiar with Esmaeili’s case who spoke to CPJ on the condition of anonymity, citing fear of reprisal, said the journalist was arrested while he was covering protests. 

The source, who said Esmaeili is in Greater Tehran Central Penitentiary in the southern part of the city, said no charges have been filed against the journalist. 

The source said that Esmaeili had a stomach operation before he was imprisoned and is not receiving the medications he needs for post-surgical complications.

Authorities arrested dozens of journalists as the protests over Amini’s death spread across the country. Several of them were later released on bail. 

CPJ emailed Iran’s mission to the United Nations in late 2022 for comment on the cases of imprisoned Iranian journalists but received no response.