Tom King, BA Politics
After 109 days in detention, former SOAS student Ghoncheh Ghavami appeared in court today facing charges of “propaganda against the state” after she attempted to attend a men’s volleyball match at Tehran’s Azadi Stadium in June.
Ghavami has spent more than 40 days in solitary confinement and a fortnight on hunger strike during her time in prison. During today’s hour and a half-long court session, the judge stated a verdict could be expected within seven days.
Following the session held in private at Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court, the family were allowed 20 minutes with Ghavami. Speaking via the Facebook page calling for her release, Ghavami’s mother Susan said “Ghoncheh kept kissing her grandfather who she hasn’t seen for all these 109 days and kept weeping.”
“Then using my hand I put a slice of the banana and watermelon that I brought from home into her mouth to reassure myself that she has ended her hunger strike.”
“I hope that by now next week this nightmare is over and my daughter is in my arms. Keep me in your prayers.”
Last week, students at SOAS held a demonstration and hunger strike expressing solidarity with Ghavami and on Friday the Union General Meeting passed a motion calling for her release.