Babak Abazari

Babak Abazari (1984–2015) was a prominent poet and publisher from Iran who headed the Nasira Publishing House. After his publishing house was closed down by the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, Babak was threatened with death in a car accident by the Iranian security forces. He allegedly died from drowning in the Caspian Sea in January 2015.
Born: 1984, Iran
Died: 2015, Iran

On 21 January 2015, the Iranian Students News Agency claimed that prominent Iranian poet and publisher Babak Abazari had died by drowning in the city of Langarud on the south coast of the Caspian Sea. His body was moved to Tehran, where it was buried by family and friends at the Behesht-e Zahra Cemetery.

Babak Abazari was born in Iran in 1984. He published a collection of poetry called A Cradle on the Fault and was the director of Nasira Publications. Although his publishing house had taken part in the Tehran Book Fair, it was closed down by the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance.

In May 2014, Babak gave an interview to the Akhbar Rooz website. He said that he had been threatened by the Iranian security forces and advised to only publish religious books. After his publishing licence was revoked, Babak believed that the threats would end, but instead they increased.

Babak learnt from the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance that a case file had been opened on him by the security services (Sepah intelligence). After being threatened with death in a car accident by a plain-clothes security officer, he decided to leave Iran.

Babak was warned to keep quiet and not to speak to the media. He did not keep quiet – and, when he returned to Iran, he paid with his life. But Babak Abazari will live forever as a great Persian poet who said “I believe in freedom, not an Islamic republic” and “we want to create a new Renaissance.”

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