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Sunday, August 14, 2005

Akbar Ganji in intensive care

Rsf:The press freedom group Reporters Without Borders would like someone to be able to visit Iranian journalist and political prisoner Akbar Ganji, its secretary-general, Robert Ménard, told AFP Tuesday.
"We are asking that one of Akbar Ganji's lawyers or a member of his family should be allowed to see him at the hospital [where he has been since 17 July] in order to verify his state of health and find out whether or not he has called off his hunger strike," Ménard said.
"There were contradictory statements Tuesday" as to the status of the dissident's hunger strike, Ménard said. "The justice ministry announced that he had stopped the hunger strike but the hospital spokesperson said he was still refusing to eat," he said. "Since it began, the Iranian authorities have announced the end of Akbar Ganji's protest several times," Ménard said.
Reporters Without Borders urged Ganji to call off his hunger strike on Monday and is worried about "the gravity of his state of health," Ménard said. "None of his lawyers have seen him since 17 July when he arrived at the hospital, and his family has not seen him since 1 August," he added.

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