Advokater som forsvarer opposisjonen er særlig utsatt i Iran. De arresteres på åpen gate, kastes i fengsel, og andre mottar truende telefoner. De får beskjed om at det å snakke med pressen, særlig den utenlandske, er det samme som å gå fiendens ærend.

Human Rights Watch offentliggjorde en rapport med mange eksempler søndag.

HRW said plainclothes officers snatched lawyer Shadi Sadr on July 15 as she was walking to Friday prayers. A friend of the lawyer who was with her at the time is quoted as describing how a car pulling over next to them. Three persons from the car grabbed Sadr, one even beat her with a cable, then threw her inside the vehicle and sped away, HRW said.

At least four other Iranian human rights defenders — Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, Abdolfattah Soltani, Mohammad Mosatafaie, and Kambiz Noroozi — have been arrested, according to HRW. Mostafaie was later released but the others remain in custody.

HRW also said families of two detainees told the group their sons don’t want lawyers to represent them. One father quoted his son as saying that lawyers «cannot help us» now.

The group also said several other Iranian lawyers have received threatening phone calls or been interrogated, including three members of the Iranian rights group led by Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi, which authorities have repeatedly threatened to close down.

According to HRW, one lawyer said he got a call from the intelligence ministry about political prisoners he is representing, and was warned that «talking to media, particularly foreign media, is perceived as cooperating with the enemies.»

Mir Hossein Mousavi og Mahdi Karroubi har søkt om få holde en minnestund over ofrene for den poilitiske volden torsdag.

Human Rights Watch blasts Iran lawyer arrests