The Iranian Supreme Court has now ordered a reopening of the case of Zahra Kazemi. In July, 2003, Kazemi, a photojournalist with dual Canadian and Iranian citizenship, was arrested in Teheran while taking pictures of a student demonstration outside Evin Prison. She was put in that very same prison herself, and she died as a result of treatment she received there. Two years later, an Iranian doctor fled to the West and revealed that he had examined the body, which showed signs of rape and torture.
Iranís chargť d’affaires in Ottawa, Seyed Mahdi Mohabi, commented that the decision to reopen the case was part of Iran’s efforts to improve relations with Canada. However, on December 3 Iran ordered the expulsion of Canada’s ambassador John Mundy. While no explanation has been given, Canada has rejected all ambassadorial appointments to Ottawa by Iran, finding them unsuitable because all have been implicated in the hostage-taking at the U.S. embassy in 1979. As well, Canada has consistently sponsored U.N. resolutions criticizing Iran for human rights violations.