Dubai, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Security guards in the control room of Iran’s infamous Evin Prison drew attention one by one, and the monitor in front of them suddenly flashed, completely unlike the surveillance footage he was seeing. Show different things.
“Cyber attack”, the monitor flashes. Other security guards get together to take pictures or make emergency calls by holding up your cell phone. “General protests up to political prisoner freedom” reads another line on the screen.
An online account by an entity allegedly describing itself as a group of hackers shared footage of the incident and some of the other surveillance videos it seized with the Associated Press. Hackers said the release of the footage was an effort to show the harsh conditions of prisons known to detain political prisoners and foreign officials, often used as a trump card in negotiations with the West. rice field.
In part of the video, a man broke a mirror in the bathroom and cut his arm open. In scenes shot by surveillance cameras, prisoners and even guards hit each other. Prisoners sleeping in a single room with three bunk beds stacked on the wall are dressed in blankets to keep them warm.
“We want the world to hear our voice for the freedom of all political prisoners,” he read a message from his online account to the AP in Dubai.
Faced with criticism from the UN Special Rapporteur on the prison situation, Iran did not immediately respond to requests for comment sent to the UN mission in New York. The country’s Iranian national media has not acknowledged the case in Evin.
However, as tensions continued over the acceleration of nuclear program, several embarrassing hacking incidents struck Iran. Talks with the West over reviving the atomic agreement between Tehran and the world powers remain pending..
Four former prisoners in Evin and Iranian human rights activists abroad told AP that the video resembled the area of a facility in northern Tehran. Some scenes also matched images of the facility previously taken by journalists and images of prisons found in satellite images accessed by AP.
The footage shows a row of sewing machines used by prisoners, a crouching toilet and a cell with an outside area of the prison. Inside the facility, there are images of a prison field, a prisoner’s toilet, and an office.
Many of the footage have time stamps for 2020 and this year. Some unstamped videos show that the guards are wearing face masks and are in the midst of a coronavirus pandemic.
There is no sound in the video, but it speaks to the harsh world facing prisoners at the facility. One sequence shows what appears to be a lean man thrown out of a car in a parking lot and dragged into a prison. The other shows a priest going down the stairs and passing by a man without stopping.
Security guards in another video can be seen beating a man in a prisoner’s uniform. One guard sucker-beat a prisoner in a cell. As with prisoners, guards fight between them. Many are packed in single room cells. No one is wearing a face mask.
Accounts that share videos with APs call themselves “Ali’s Justice.” This is a reference to the Shiite-respected Prophet Muhammad’s son-in-law. He also ridicules Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Hamenei.
He claimed to have “hundreds” of gigabytes of data from what was described as a hacking that took place a few months ago. Did not answer the question about who was involved in the leak.
The account associated the timing of the leak with recent elections Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi, Hamenei’s hard-line acolyte is involved Thousands were executed in 1988 at the end of the Iran-Iraq War..
“Evin Prison is a stain on Raishi’s black turban and white beard,” I also read the message displayed on the prison control room screen.
Long-licensed from the West, Iran faces difficulties in getting the latest hardware and software, often relying on Chinese-made electronics and older systems. For example, the control room system seen in the video appeared to be running Windows 7, which Microsoft no longer patched. This makes it easier for potential hackers to be targeted. Pirated versions of Windows and other software are common throughout Iran.
For the last few months Iran’s rail system has been the target of obvious cyber attacks. Other self-proclaimed hacker groups have published details about Iranians claiming hacking on behalf of theocracy. Meanwhile, the most famous cyberattack-the Stuxnet virus that destroyed an Iranian centrifuge with western fear of the Tehran program-is widely suspected to be the creation of the United States and Israel.
Evin Prison was built in 1971 under Shamohammadreza Paflavi in Iran. After the 1979 Islamic Revolution wiped Shah out of power, it contained political prisoners at that time and later.
Although theoretically under the control of Iran’s prison system, Evin is also a specialized unit for people with western relations with political prisoners, run by the Paramilitary Revolutionary Guard Corps, which responds only to Hamenei. I have. This facility is subject to sanctions from both the United States and the European Union.
Many of the arrested protesters arrived at Evin after Iran cracked down on protesters after the 2009 re-election of hardline President Mahmood Ahmadinejad. Following reports of prison abuse, lawmakers later promoted reforms in Evin. This installed a closed circuit camera.
But the problem continued. A report by UN Special Rapporteur Javaid Rehman repeatedly nominated Evin Prison as a place of prisoner abuse. Lehmann warned in January that the entire Iranian prison system was facing “long-standing overcrowding and poor hygiene” and “insurmountable obstacles to address COVID-19.”
“Prisoners of conscience and political prisoners have been infected with or experienced symptoms of COVID-19, and many have refused tests or treatments or unnecessarily delayed receipt of test results or treatments. “I will.” He writes.
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