Vida Rabbani

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Iranian journalist and activist Vida Rabbani was arrested and transferred to Evin Prison on November 22, 2020. No charges or allegations against her have been made public.

Rabbani writes for the reformist newspaper Seda Weekly and has contributed reporting to outlets including Ghanoon Daily and the Sepid Newspaper, where she covered topics including labor unrest, illegal abortions, and public health. She also frequently posts political commentary on Twitter, where she has more than 8,000 followers, and Instagram, where she has about 2,700 followers.

Rabbani is also a member of the Union of Islamic Iran People Party, a reformist party founded in 2015, according to reports by the exile-run outlets Human Rights Activists News Agency and Iran International.

On November 22, authorities arrested Rabbani and transferred her to Tehran’s Evin Prison, according to those reports and a notice on Telegram by “Emtedad News,” the official media outlet of the Union of Islamic Iran People Party.

None of those reports specify the reason for Rabbani’s arrest.

In November 2019, Rabbani was among 77 signatories of a letter condemning a state crackdown on political protesters, and she was previously questioned about her affiliation with that letter, according to a report by U.S. Congress-funded broadcaster Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Rabbani was also briefly arrested on January 15, 2020, and released without charge according to news reports, which did not state any reason for the arrest. 

In the days prior to her arrest in November 2020, Rabbani tweeted criticism of Iranian authorities and President Hassan Rouhani, according to CPJ’s review of her posts.

On November 30, CPJ emailed Alireza Miryousefi, the head of media office at Iran’s Mission to the United Nations, for comment on Rabbani’s case, but did not receive any response.