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Human Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh Freed in Iran

FILE - Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh is seen in a 2018 photo shared on social media.
FILE - Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh is seen in a 2018 photo shared on social media.

Iranian law enforcement on Wednesday freed Nasrin Sotoudeh, an internationally recognized human rights lawyer who was imprisoned for more than two weeks, her husband said.

Sotoudeh, 60, was arrested October 29 while attending the funeral of Armita Garawand, who activists say was beaten to death by Tehran's morality police.

"Nasrin was released from prison a few hours ago after posting bail," her husband Reza Khandan said in a post on X, formerly Twitter, which included a picture with his wife who was noticeably without a headscarf, which is mandatory for women living in the Islamic republic.

Sotoudeh has served time for her activism in the past, including a sentence in 2018 for 38 years and 148 lashes. She was released two years into her term.

Sotoudeh has reached celebrity status at home and abroad, with a cameo in Jafar Panahi's 2015 feature film, "Taxi," and a 2020 documentary, "Nasrin," about her struggle for gender equality in Iran.

Garawand's death echoes Mahsa Amini's, whose alleged killing invigorated a feminist movement in Iran. Both women died while in custody of Iran's morality police. Authorities in the Islamic republic have cracked down on dissidents who refuse to comply with Iran's strict dress code for women while also trying to quell public backlash.

In both cases, the morality police blamed the deaths on unrelated medical conditions.

Narges Mohammadi, a fellow women's rights activist, was awarded with this year's Nobel Peace Prize while jailed in Iran. She is serving multiple sentences in Evin prison, on charges including spreading propaganda against the state. Her family says that she has been deprived of medical treatment because she refuses to wear a veil, even to a hospital.

Some information for this report came from Agence France-Presse.

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