Iranian Rapper Released From Prison After Year-Long Detention

Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi has been released from prison after over a year of imprisonment, including 252 days in solitary confinement, upon posting bail.

The rapper’s release was announced on his social media page, where an image of Salehi’s post-release was shared on the X. The page issued a statement, declaring, “Toomaj Salehi, the son of Iran, after enduring 252 days of solitary confinement and a total of one year and 21 days of unjust imprisonment, is finally released on bail from prison to rejoin his large family.”

“I thought the loneliest moment for a person was being under the torment of solitary confinement; now I realize that the loneliness of being released from it is even more bitter,” Toomaj said first after freedom, according to it official account. 

Expressing happiness for “the end of this unjust captivity,” the post said Toomaj will seek medical care to treat the physical injuries he suffered in prison.

During his incarceration, Salehi’s official account reported that he had sustained injuries from torture, including severe swelling and bleeding in his eyes, a fractured tooth, and injured fingers.

In July, Salehi dodged a death sentence and was instead sentenced to over six years in prison. He was convicted of offenses related to “corruption on earth,” which includes violations of religious morality.

Since Salehi’s detention in November 2022, both Iranians within the country and those abroad had been advocating for his freedom in various gatherings. The international community also rallied behind the protesting rapper, with numerous organizations expressing their support. Several political figures in Western countries took up the cause, advocating for Salehi’s release.

Salehi’s arrest took place amid uprisings against the regime, during which he used his social media platforms to support popular protests. It is the second time Salehi has faced detention, with a previous incident occurring in September 2020 after performing the song “Buy a Rat Hole.” On that occasion, he was released after a short period of time.

Throughout his career, Salehi has addressed critical issues such as corruption in the Islamic Republic, workers’ strikes, and the execution and imprisonment of regime opponents through his musical works.

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