Iranian Activist and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Narges Mohammadi Is Given an Extended Prison Sentence for Allegedly Promoting Islamic Propaganda

Photo of Narges Mohammadi’s Children Receiving the Nobel Peace Prize on Her Behalf. Credit: NTB/AFP via Getty Images Copyright: Fredrik Varfjell / NTB

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates— Nobel Peace Prize laureate Narges Mohammadi has been sentenced to an additional 15 months in prison by an Iranian Court for allegedly spreading propaganda against the Islamic Republic. The new sentence went into effect in the middle of December 2023 after Mohammadi refused to attend her court sessions. 

She was sent to prison when it was announced that she was selected as the Nobel Peace Prize winner in October 2023. However, her children were present to receive the award on her behalf.

It was declared that once Mohammadi served her sentence she would be prohibited from traveling abroad for two years, providing participation in political or social groups, and having a mobile phone.

Under these conditions, she is also banned from Tehran, the capital of Iran. This means she will serve her sentence elsewhere in Iran. Before the recently added sentence, she was located in Evin Prison, in Tehran, where she served a 30-month sentence for promoting propaganda against the ruling authority, disobedience in prison related to going on hunger strike, and alleged defamation of authorities. She and other incarcerated individuals in the facility were prevented from receiving medical care and protested against the requirement for Iranian women to wear headscarves.

Mohammadi serves as the 19th woman and the second Iranian woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. Despite the relentless backlash from Iranian authorities and her repeated imprisonment, she is persistent in her activism efforts.

Mohammadi served as a leading figure in women-led protests as a response to Iran’s deeply theocratic governance. After a 22-year-old woman was detained and killed after violating the Islamic dress code, Mahsa Amini’s legacy set the tone for many other women to join in solidarity. 

The end of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 initiated the implementation of the headscarf regulation for Iranian women. Although Iranian women are granted freedom to obtain jobs and positions in government, Iran and Taliban-Afghanistan remain the only two countries to enforce hijab-wearing.

Narges Mohammadi is most notable for her resilience in resisting the oppression of Iranian women and promoting human rights and freedoms for all. She has dedicated more than 30 years to fighting for women’s rights in the challenge against the Iranian theocracy. During her efforts, she has assisted incarcerated activists, spearheaded a campaign in opposition to the death penalty, and condemned Iran’s use of torture and sexual violence.

Her freedom has been jeopardized yet her unwavering solidarity and activism speak volumes. Despite being arrested 13 times and sentenced to 31 years in prison and 154 lashes, she continues to stand at the forefront of major protests. Upon receiving the Nobel Peace Prize she optimistically stated, “I will never stop striving for the realization of democracy, freedom, and equality”. This award denotes her strength in advocating for Iranian women and denouncing the wrongdoings of the Iranian theocracy.

About The Author

Jenna Tooley is a third-year senior studying Political Science with a concentration in American Politics and minors in Global Studies and Public Affairs at the University of California, Los Angeles. She has a passion for social justice and advocacy work and intends on pursuing Law School in the very near future, with a potential specialization in Criminal Law in aims of dismantiling the stigma around incarcerated people and addressing the root causes of recidvism to provides incarcerated people resources and rehabilitation to independently function upon re-entry into society. Outside of her advocacy work she enjoys traveling and sightseeing, aborbing the ambiance of coffee shops, and thifting as a form of self-care.

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