Editor’s Note: During the last two months, Iran Press Watch has reported extensively on the ordeals faced by Mrs. Haleh Houshmandi, but was very happy to celebrate her release two days ago. Iran Press Watch has just received a moving letter from Mrs. Houshmandi, which we share below in translation.
Today [Monday, April 27, 2009] is the second day since my release from the prison of the Ministry of Intelligence on a bail of 100 million tumans [equivalent to about $100,000]. Forty days of imprisonment!
It all started two days before Naw-Ruz [March 21]: prior to that, in the absence of my husband and I, agents of the Ministry of Intelligence had come to our house and had forced my mother to open the door. They raided our home and confiscated our computer as well as all our religious books, and they even took children’s CDs belonging to my eight-year old child. It was a most stressful situation.
However, when earlier today I was reading various internet sites, the thought occurred to me that perhaps because of my inability to meet with my family for four weeks and only being allowed to speak with them by phone, some of the details have not fully reached interested parties.
My heart ailment is from the past, and I was been under a physician’s care. In the stressful environment of constant interrogation and solitary confinement, my conditioned worsened. However, after the second week, when I was examined by the prison facility’s doctor, I was given the required medications.
Because of my neck and backaches, I was in considerable pain. Moreover, in the small confinement of the prison cell, I was unable to move, and this added considerably to the hardship.
From the fourth week, my dear friend Haleh Rouhi, who has been incarcerated for some 18 months, was allowed to visit my cell. Because of her attention and care, I was made more comfortable.
In the fifth week, they took me to a hospital specializing in heart problems, and they performed an echocardiogram of my heart to diagnose the cause of my worsening condition, which was determined to be due to stress and emotions associated with my imprisonment.
The next day, dear Haleh Rouhi and Raha Sabet were given their family leave, and I spent another week with only myself and my pains in their cell, which had a television and books.
I am now in the love-filled bosom of my family and under a physician’s care.
I pray for the release of all our dear friends, Mr. Vahdat Danna, Mr. Farham Masumi and Mr. Kayvan Karami, who continue to languish in prison in Shiraz, and all other Baha’i prisoners throughout Iran. I offer my most heartfelt gratitude to all the friends, near or far, throughout the world, who have given solace and comfort to me and my family through their ardent prayers.
Haleh Houshmandi, Shiraz.