Freed Iran Hiker: Cohorts Are Being Beaten in Jail

Sarah Shourd calls for companions' release

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Jun 10, 2011 2:10 PM CDT

(Newser) – The two American hikers still imprisoned in Iran have been physically abused in Iranian prison, Sarah Shourd alleged in a BBC interview this week. She described one incident in which a guard threw Josh Fattal down a flight of stairs after he took some extra food, and another in which a guard threw Shane Bauer against a wall until he started bleeding from the head. “My worst fear is that they’re not safe,” Shourd said, according to CNN.

“They don’t have consular access, they’re not allowed to see their lawyer, and we fear the worst.” She also detailed how at the beginning of their captivity, they had gone on a five-day hunger strike to protest being separated. Eventually the guards reunited them—“for maybe two minutes.” Isolated in her cell, Shourd panicked. “All I did was cry and beat the walls,” she said. “I would have blood streaming down my hands from beating at the walls.” (Click to read one columnist's complaint that there's too much hiker hate out there.)

American hiker Sarah Shourd, poses for a photo at AFP offices May 4, 2011, in Washington, DC.
American hiker Sarah Shourd, poses for a photo at AFP offices May 4, 2011, in Washington, DC.   (Getty Images)
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