Iranian Doctor Defects

Dr. Shahram Azam gave up everything he owned in Iran, and took enormous personal risks upon himself, so that he could escape the control of the regime and tell the truth about the death of Iranian-Canadian journalist Zahra Kazemi.

This thread at Free Iran has a roundup of news releases along with comments.

From Marze Por Gohar:
A doctor employed at Bagheeyehollah Hospital in Tehran (connected with the revolutionary guards) where Zahra Kazemi, deceased Iranian/Canadian photojournalist was transfered before dying, left Iran and for the first time, in an interview with a German publication divulged that the regime's interogators and goons had brutally gang-raped the photojournalist while she was under qustioning and torture.

The German weekly, Die Zeit [in the Thursday, March 31st issue] states that Kazemi was delivered to the hospital directly after undergoing severe torture in prison; she died on July 11th, 2003. Dr. Shahram Azam, who examined Kazemi at the hospital was able to provide a firsthand account. Fifty four year old Kazemi was in a coma when delivered to the hospital in the early hours of June 27th 2003; her body was covered with contusions and as such, she was transfered to the emergency room of Bagheeyehollah Hospital.

Dr. Azam reports that it was quite clear that she had been severely tortured and brutally gang-raped. ...

From the CBC:
Shahram Azam, a former staff physician in Iran's defence ministry, said he examined Kazemi, the 54-year-old Iranian-born Montrealer, early on June 27, 2003, according to reports published in the Globe and Mail and Montreal's La Presse.

Kazemi had been arrested four days earlier while photographing a demonstration outside Tehran's Evin prison. She died in Iranian custody in July 2003. Iran's government admitted she'd been beaten but maintains her death was accidental. An Iranian security agent was charged and acquitted of killing her. ...

From Iran Focus:
Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi was savagely beaten, tortured and raped while in Iranian custody in 2003, according to an emergency-room doctor who examined her before she died.

The doctor has recently received political asylum in Canada.

Shahram Azam, formerly a physician on the staff of the Iranian Ministry of Defence, says he examined Ms. Kazemi, a 54-year-old Iranian-born dual citizen, at Tehran's Baghiattulah hospital early on the morning of June 27, 2003 -- four days after she was arrested while photographing a demonstration outside Tehran's Evin prison.

His account of Ms. Kazemi's condition in the days before her death, the first by a medical eye witness, confirms that she was tortured -- far more brutally than even critics of Iran's hard-line theocratic regime had believed.

"Her entire body carried strange marks of violence," Dr. Azam said. ...

Go to the links for full details. (Warning: very explicit.)