Reports from Iranian state media have disclosed that a 16-year-old Iranian teenager, Armita Geravand, who slipped into a coma earlier this month after an alleged encounter with law enforcement officers regarding her compliance with the nation’s hijab law, is now reported to be in a state of brain death.
The Islamic Republic of Iran News Network, in its latest updates on Armita Geravand’s health, has expressed an almost certain belief that her condition has deteriorated to the point of being brain dead, despite the strenuous efforts of the medical personnel involved.
Official Iranian sources have rebuffed assertions made by human rights organizations suggesting that the young girl’s well-being was compromised during an incident on October 1st when she crossed paths with officers tasked with enforcing the compulsory Islamic dress code on the Tehran metro.
This revelation regarding Geravand’s condition has the potential to rekindle nationwide protests akin to those that were ignited by the tragic demise of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish Iranian woman, while under the supervision of the “morality police” in September the previous year. Amini had been taken into custody for alleged violations of the dress code.
Meanwhile, in a separate development, an Iranian court has meted out substantial prison sentences to two journalists for their reporting on Amini’s passing, as reported by state media.
According to the Iranian state news agency IRNA, Niloofar Hamedi and Elaheh Mohammadi have received sentences of 13 and 12 years in prison, respectively. These sentences include charges of collusion with the US government and actions against national security.
Legal representatives for the two journalists have categorically rejected these accusations. Hamedi was apprehended following the act of photographing Amini’s parents embracing one another in a Tehran hospital, where their daughter lay in a coma. On the other hand, Mohammadi was detained after her coverage of Amini’s funeral in her Kurdish hometown of Saqez, which also marked the outset of the protests.
According to IRNA, the “issued verdicts” are subject to appeal. If the sentences are confirmed, any duration that the women have already spent at Evin prison, known for housing a majority of political detainees, would be subtracted from the overall sentences, as per the judiciary’s Mizan news agency.