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Alleged abuse in Iran's notorious prison exposed by hackers

There is also an image of an emaciated man collapsing after being dropped by a car in the parking lot, then being dragged through the prison by guards. In another video, guards are seen beating a prisoner in a hallway as other staff looks on.

There are growing concerns over the health and safety of British-Iranian national Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe after hackers released surveillance footage from the notorious Evin prison in Tehran, showing abuse and mistreatment.

Details of the footage reported by the Times show the grim conditions at the prison, which is known for detaining political and security prisoners, including foreign citizens held as "hostages" in negotiations with the West.

Inmates are seen fighting each other and being forcibly dragged along the floor and abused by guards. In one scene, a prisoner smashes a bathroom mirror to try to cut open his arm; in another a cleric steps over the body of an inmate who is lying in a doorway, seemingly oblivious to the prisoner's plight.

There is also an image of an emaciated man collapsing after being dropped by a car in the parking lot, then being dragged through the prison by guards. In another video, guards are seen beating a prisoner in a hallway as other staff looks on.

Zaghari-Ratcliffe was an inmate of Evin until her release on furlough due to the pandemic last year. It's feared that the 43-year-old, who was jailed in Tehran in 2016 for spying, may be returned to Evin having been sentenced in April to an additional 12 months in prison.

READ: Iranian official confirms reports of prisoner swap with US, says Zaghari-Ratcliffe will be released after "payment of military debt"

The hacking was carried out by a group called Adalat Ali – or "Ali's Justice". The footage appears to be from the past year or so as guards are seen wearing masks to protect against COVID-19. It comes a month after a hacking of railway stations and transport websites across Iran. Station information boards were manipulated to read that trains were "delayed due to a cyberattack".

Conditions in Evin prison have been a cause of concern for the UN and human rights groups. UN Special Rapporteur on Iran, Javaid Rehman, named Evin as a site where prisoners are abused. Rehman warned in January that Iran's entire prison system faced "longstanding overcrowding and hygiene deficiencies" and "insurmountable obstacles for responding to Covid-19".

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