Report: San Diego Man Imprisoned in Iran Considers Suicide

Shahini (Family photo via CBS and KFMB - TV )
Family photo via CBS and KFMB - TV

A dual Iranian-U.S. citizen who was sentenced to 18 years in prison in Iran this past October wrote what appears to be a suicide note to his girlfriend in San Diego from his prison cell, where he said that he is thinking about ending his life “to become free.”

Gholamreza “Robin” Shahini, 46, penned the letter, acquired by Foreign Desk, to his girlfriend, Sevil Suleymani. In it, he wrote, “the only thing that I am concern [sic] is to get out of this situation,” and expressed the he knows he is “not going to have easy life anymore. If this continue to be like this, the logic is to end,” his life.

Shahini was sentenced to 18 years in prison this past October for allegedly “collaborating with a foreign government,” referring to the United States, and for “insulting the revered” in a post over social media.

The letter reportedly reads:

Dear Sevil

There is no reason to be blamed at this time. I know that I have made mistake, but the only thing that I am concern is to get out of this situation. The whole world can judge me and blame me everyday but this insight does not bring solution. People do mistake all the time and I am one of those people.

As a good friend I appreciate for all the work you have done for me. The situation that I am in is ridiculous and my brain cannot cope with this situation. Most of the time thinking to end my life to become free. The people I am dealing with are uneducated? And this suffer me a lot. If one day I decide to committe suicide I choose it because they made the enviroment for me to act such a crazy decision.

I don’t know who is behind all these but I know I am not going to have easy life anymore. If this continue to be like this, the logic is to end.

To understand my feelings, a person should not be in my shose. Otherwise it is hard to understand. I do my best to cope with it but I do not know how long I can resist.

At the end I ask you when you take time please try not to blame me and be a compasien person.

I thank you for all your help.

Robin Shahini

Shahini was a resident of San Diego for 16 years prior to his arrest in Iran several months ago. Iran does not recognize dual citizenship and treats Iranian-Americans as Iranians, subjecting them to Iranian law.

The Los Angeles Times spoke with several of Shahini’s family members, who noted that he had converted to Christianity and that it could amplify his troubles with the Iranian regime.

According to Articles 12 and 13 of the Iranian Constitution, all branches of Islam and Christianity have the right to worship, as do Jews and Zoroastrians, within the limits of the law there. However, converting from Islam to any other religion is considered haram, or forbidden, and in many cases, could result in execution.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter and Periscope @AdelleNaz


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