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Iranian hunger strikers posing political threat, lawmaker warns

A prominent Iranian married couple on hunger strike could cause a political catastrophe if they die, an Iranian lawmaker warned on Saturday.

"Two prisoners are currently risking their lives in protest to the status quo," reformist politician and journalist Elias Hazrati wrote to Chief Justice Sadeq Larijani, according to the ISNA news agency.

Thousands of Iranians and several reformist parliamentarians have voiced their support as part of a massive Twitter campaign for the release of the well-known dissident couple.

Hazrati said an immediate response from the chief justice was urgently needed in order to avoid serious political consequences.

Arash Sadeghi, one of the two hunger strikers, is said to be in critical condition after 70 days without food. Sadeghi has been arrested on numerous occasions following his harsh criticism ofIranian leadership and human rights violations.

He is currently serving a 19-year sentence on charges of endangering national security and disseminating propaganda.

In 2010, his mother suffered a fatal stroke when police raided Sadeghi's home.

Sadeghi has been likened to the prominent Northern Irish hunger striker Bobby Sands. A Tehran street that is home to the British embassy was named after Sands following his death while on hunger strike in 1981.

Published : December 31, 2016

By : Deutsche Presse-Agentur Tehran