Ali Saremi, a supporter of the Mojahedin-e Khalq, or MEK, had been executed four years earlier at another Iranian prison for his allegiance to the militant dissident group, which is considered a terrorist organization in Iran. But in death, at least to supporters of the MEK, Saremi had become a martyr.
The group of MEK prisoners had gathered on Saremi's death anniversary for a moment of silence in his honor. They read poetry, shared personal memories, and vowed to continue their struggle. But the Iranian regime was most irritated by another aspect of the commemoration: videos and photos of the gathering, recorded on the prisoners' cellphones, soon began spreading online, reaching far beyond Gohardasht's walls. Saremi's execution had turned into a propaganda coup for a group whose sole mission is to undermine the Islamic Republic.