Vahid Sayadi Nasiri: Jailed Iran activist dies on hunger strike

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Vahid Sayadi NasiriImage source, Iran Human Rights Monitor
Image caption,
The activist was protesting against his conditions in prison

An Iranian political activist jailed for his messages on social media has died after spending 60 days on hunger strike, his family says.

Vahid Sayadi Nasiri had been accused of insulting Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other offences.

He was released last March after serving two-and-a-half years in prison but detained again five months later.

The activist demanded his transfer from a high-security unit of a prison in the city of Qom to a different location.

Vahid Sayadi Nasiri was initially arrested in September 2015 and sentenced to eight years in prison for "insulting the supreme leader" and "propaganda against the state," according to the advocacy group Iran Human Rights Monitor.

The charges were related to posts he had made on his Facebook page. He was later pardoned and released early.

However he was arrested again in August, just months after his release, reportedly on similar charges.

He began his hunger strike in October in protest at the conditions of his imprisonment and his lack of access to a lawyer, according to Iran Human Rights Monitor.

He also said the principle of separation of prisoners' crimes was being violated as he was being held with ordinary criminals and was being attacked and harassed, the group said.

Conditions in the Qom prison are described as harsh, correspondents say.

The activist had reportedly been taken to hospital in the wake of his hunger strike.

His sister, Elaheh, said the family had been informed by authorities of his death. No other details were immediately available.