Iran’s legal system came under fresh criticism Wednesday amid allegations of prisoner abuse and controversy over televised courtroom confessions, decried as “show trials” by domestic and international critics.
The country’s leading opposition figurehead and a prominent conservative, both losing candidates in June’s disputed presidential election, denounced the trials and alleged violence against detained protesters. A statement purportedly signed by a group of Tehran judges condemned the treatment of prisoners and the televised confessions of suspects allegedly mistreated and held in solitary confinement for weeks without lawyers.
Authorities hinted that they might release 24-year-old French national Clotilde Reiss on bail into the custody of the French Embassy in Tehran. The researcher was arrested and held for weeks for taking pictures of postelection demonstrations and e-mailing messages about the unrest to her friends. Her confession was aired Saturday, drawing condemnation from the European Union and France. [continued…]