Pourshajari, a blogger who wrote under the penname Siamak Mehr, was arrested in Orumiyeh in Azerbaijan province while on a trip to visit his family, according to the Iranian Human Rights Activists News Agency.
Authorities did not disclose Pourshajari’s location or legal status. The journalist’s daughter, Mitra Pourshajari, said on Facebook that on October 30, the journalist called his family and said he was being held at Ghezel Hessar Prison in the city of Karaj and that he had been arrested for the same reasons that he had been imprisoned before.
Pourshajari’s daughter said she did not have any details about her father’s arrest or trial date.
The journalist had been released on August 23, 2014, after serving four years in prison. Pourshajari, who criticized Iran’s theological state on his blog Gozaresh be Khaak-e-Iran (Reports to the Soil of Iran), was arrested on September 12, 2010, at his home in Karaj, according to news reports and human rights groups. In December 2010, he was given three years in prison on charges of “propagating against the regime” and “insulting the supreme leader,” Human Rights and Democracy Activists of Iran reported. In April 2012, the Karaj Revolutionary Court sentenced Pourshajari to an additional year in prison on blasphemy charges. The journalist declined to file appeals, citing the lack of due process in the judicial system.
In an open letter dated December 2010, published by the Human Rights and Democracy Activists of Iran, Pourshajari described his arrest and subsequent detention. He said intelligence agents confiscated a computer hard drive, satellite receiver, and documents. The journalist wrote that he was taken to Rajaee Shahr Prison, where interrogators tortured him and subjected him to a mock execution. He said he was not allowed visitors, phone calls, or access to a lawyer.
Pourshajari’s daughter told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran on April 1, 2013, that the journalist had suffered a heart attack in prison in the fall of 2012. She said her father would die in custody unless prison authorities allowed him to have open heart surgery. In August 2013, she told the Human Rights Activists News Agency that her father was also suffering from diabetes, and that prison authorities were still refusing to allow him out of prison for hospital treatment.