Monday, July 6, 2009

We will come to see you in Evin prison on Father's Day

The following letter was written by the three daughters of Mohammad-Ali Abtahi, former vice president of Iran, prominent reformist, and popular blogger, after their father has been detained for no good reason in the notorious Evin prison for 20 days and likely to be under torture.

Hi my dear and darling daddy,

Congratulations on your day. I really want to buy you a gift and come to meet you like I do every year. Like every year I want to hug you and feel your presence. Like every year I want to see your beautiful smile and be at your side. I never thought I would have to write you a letter for Father's day; not to mention a letter I know I can't even get to you.

My sweetheart dad,
I feel so gloomy, so desperately gloomy. I wish I could see you for one instant. I know you miss us too over there.
These twenty days have been very hard on us. Actually, they don't feel to have passed at all. For us it is still the 16th of June. The same day we headed off from Revolution to reach Freedom1. You got home sooner than us and you were worried about your daughters and you asked us to come home sooner...
And they arrested you the midnight of that very day...
For us it's still that day. We're waiting for you to come back home.

My sweetheart daddy,
They say you've done some things against national security; they say you've confessed that you are ashamed and regretful for what you've done and that you constantly shed tears. Who believes that?

Our joyful and caring dad,
With their lies, don't they know what they're doing to your wife and daughters with suffering souls and broken hearts?
You know well that us, your daughters and mom, your wife and all your fans and readers of your blog who are awaiting your freedom, know you better than those who have only known your grand ideas, patient temperament, cheerfulness and kindness for 20 days, and we know you are greater than these things...

Oh dearer than my life,
We miss your endless compassion, your constant laughter, your daily posts on webneveshteha2 that you worried about writing everyday at exactly 4:30 in the afternoon. I know you have a lot of worries these days, but the only thing that closed cell has taken off your shoulders is the daily updating of your blog. But today, us and all your fans are met with the 20 day old post "Abtahi Arrested".

My lovely daddy,
You're not here, we pass each day in loneliness...
Whatever we try gets nowhere. Sometimes we think to ourselves maybe in your lonely nights you think maybe your friends and daughters aren't doing anything for your freedom. Right after you were gone, we spent four days coming and going to the attorney's office and the Evin prison...just to get your diabetes medication to you.
We wrote letters to every single person we thought might be able to do something. But to no avail...
I don't know what's going on that none of your friends can do anything about it...
We are all appalled.
Except your short 2 minute call, the only calls we got were requests to stop following up from your interrogators.

My darling dad,
I hope you'll call tonight or tomorrow...or perhaps we can meet at least for the sake of Father's day.
But even if that doesn't happen, along with the children of your other detained friends, we will come to see you at the Evin prison together at 5 in the afternoon with roses in our hands.

Our precious...
Wish you were here...
Happy Father's Day...

Your daughters, Farideh, Fatemeh, and Faezeh

1. There was a large rally in protest to the announced election results on June 16, 2009 from Revolution square to Freedom square in Tehran.
2. Webneveshteha is the name of Abtahi's popular weblog.

* Original Persian (Farsi) version
* Original Translation

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