The family of an American man imprisoned in Iran has expressed serious concern for his well-being after he penned a suicide note.
Robin Shahini, 46, a dual Iranian-American citizen and resident of San Diego for the past 16 years, was sentenced in October to 18 years in prison for “collaborating with a hostile government,” referring to the United States.
His sentence also included a blasphemy charge for “insulting the revered” on a Facebook page, according to the official sentence handed to Shahini.
His trial lasted just three hours, his family said.
In an emotionally charged letter to his girlfriend, that was shared with The Foreign Desk, Shahini wrote, “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.”
“People do mistake all the time and I am one of those people,” he said, adding “I do my best to cope with it but I do not know how long I can resist.”
Shahini is also a convert to Christianity, a factor his family believes has only added to his troubles with the Islamic Republic.
In an interview with The Foreign Desk in October, his family admitted that he was having trouble coping with the news of an 18-year sentence.
Following his sentencing, the State Department gave this response to The Foreign Desk: “We are troubled by reports that Robin (or Reza) Shahini, a person reported to be a U.S. citizen, may have been convicted and sentenced to eighteen years in prison. We reaffirm our calls on Iran to respect and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms, cease arbitrary and politically-motivated detentions and ensure fair and transparent judicial proceedings in all criminal prosecutions consistent with its law and international obligations.”
The full text of the letter reads
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.