Nayereh Sadat Ehtesham Razavi Narrates Meeting with Shahid Nawab Safavi

Faezeh Sasanikhah
Translated by: Zahra Hosseinian


Despite I did all my best, I couldn’t meet him until shortly before his martyrdom. At that time, we lived in Sar Asiyab Doolab. One day I entered a real estate agency in Khorasan Square and asked, ‘Sir, will you let me call?’ He replied: ‘No problem.’ I dialed the phone number of the military prosecutor and talked to Azmoudeh. I said to him: ‘You’ve imprisoned the soldiers of Islam and the offspring of the Messenger of God for supporting religion, and sentenced them to death; does not a mother, whose son was martyred in the military governorate and whose other child is currently being captive by you, have the right to visit her child? Do not the wives and children of those, who are imprisoned for telling the truth, have the right to visit their loved ones?’ he answered: ‘I’ll let you meet in time.’ I noticed his malicious sarcasm and said, ‘I hope it happens to your family as well.’ And I immediately put down the phone so that they could not track it and make trouble for the real estate agent. At that time, Mr. Nawab was in Ishratabad prison.

Three days later, we were informed to visit Mr. Nawab. I went to Ishratabad prison with Mr. Nawab's mother, Fatemeh, Zahra, Mr. Tahmasebi's family, and Vahedi. Arriving there, we saw that some armed soldiers and guards in a state of alert were stationed, just for two women who wanted to visit a man! It was surprising to me how much they were afraid of Mr. Nawab. We first entered a room. Several men were watching out in the terrace, and Mr. Nawab had sat down, and his hand was handcuffed with the hand of a soldier. Despite being tortured for two months and having suffered severe psychological damages, his face was bright, beautiful, and calm.

Mr. Nawab wore a military coat because the regime had unfrocked him. I wore a niqaab, and my hijab was complete. When I approached him, he hugged Fatemeh with one hand and with the other hand that was handcuffed, hugged Zahra, and caressed them. Fatemeh was sickly and depressed due to the hardships. Mr. Nawab looked carefully at her face and asked sadly, ‘why she looks so pale?’ That day, as always, Mr. Nawab greeted his mother with courtesy and respect and said, ‘Mother, let me kiss your feet.’ His mother was upset and cried a lot, saying, ‘I wish I was dying and not seeing this day.’ Mr. Nawab began to comfort her and said that ‘I wished you to be brave and patient like that mother, whose four sons were martyred in one of the battles at the beginning of Islam.  The Prophet (PBUH) tried not to face her because of embarrassment, when he wanted to travel, and that woman kissed the Prophet’s feet and said with courage and pride: ‘O Messenger of God! I’m proud that my four sons were martyred for supporting you’. Dear mother, I want you to be like one of these mothers. Mother, the end of human life is death. Humans may die from disease, stroke, falls, accidents, earthquakes, or otherwise. Another type of death is being killed in the God’s way. Is martyrdom in the God’s way more valuable or the death occurred in the bed due to illness? During the visit, Mr. Nawab tried to tell me about a dream he had, but because his mother was so sad and weeping, he did not tell. Mr. Nawab added, ‘If I wanted to compromise with Mohammad Reza, I wouldn’t be here; but, I prefer death with dignity to a life with humiliation.’ I could see with my eyes that this man, who had been tortured for almost two months, had not yet given up his bravery and resistance. I asked him if he was satisfied with me. He answered, ‘I’m satisfied with you. God and my ancestors will also be satisfied with you. You’ve been very patient and self-sacrificing in all stages of our life, and you have been beside me shoulder by shoulder and have never left me alone. I entrust you and my dearest people to God.’

He named his family members and relatives one by one and asked about their condition. Because I was pregnant, he secretly asked me about my state. I said that thank God the baby is fine and healthy. This child was born three months after his martyrdom.

A few days before I went to see Mr. Nawab, one of the newspapers had announced that some Egyptian dignitaries, scholars, and elders have moved to Iran to save Mr. Nawab. I cut the piece of the page of the newspaper in which this news was announced. I rolled it to the size of a matchstick and secretly gave it to him to strengthen his spirit. Unfortunately, the guard realized this and turned to Mr. Nawab and said, ‘Time is over.’ He looked at the guard with such anger and fury that he turned pale. As I was saying goodbye, I bent down and kissed Mr. Nawab's hand. When they took him away, he turned and looked at us meaningfully. I cried. I did not think it would be the last farewell, and they will martyr him.

Returning home, I happily told my father, ‘dear father, we’re allowed to meet with Mr. Nawab, and I saw him today.’ My father looked at me sadly, because he knew the meaning of this meeting. He had dreamed of Hazrat Seyyed al-Shuhada (AS) with his head cut off from his body. After seeing this dream, he had said that Mr. Nawab would be martyred, and this visit will be the last meet. Then he had cried a lot, and I was unaware of these issues. After the martyrdom of Seyyed Abdul Hussein Vahedi, a trial was held for Mr. Nawab, which was initially public. Mr. Nawab claimed the trial was illegal, and severely attacked the government, revealing its weaknesses and deviations. Journalists recorded all of his speeches. That was why the government made this show trial a non-public trial to protect the national interests! Then, they sentenced Mr. Nawab to death on January 03, 1956.

At the last meeting I had with Mr. Nawab, he had not yet been appealed and the trial was preliminary. I did not imagine that they martyred him. If I had known about the death penalty, I would have asked him about many things. But the regime did not want us to know about this because it was afraid of the actions and revenge of the Fadā'iyān-e Islam. On the other hand, the Fadā'iyān-e Islam also feared armed actions because of the possible danger to Mr. Nawab's life. If they assassinated Bakhtiar or Azmoudeh, the government would martyr Mr. Nawab in return. Thus the Fadā'iyān-e Islam was in a state of uncertainty. Of course, they came to me to consult and asked if I allow them to start armed actions. Unfortunately, I could not agree with them to fear of endangering Mr. Nawab's life.[1]


[1] Taheri, Hojjatollah, Memoirs of Nayereh Sadat Ehtesham Razavi, wife of Martyr Nawab Safavi, Tehran, Islamic Revolutionary Documentation Center, p. 133.

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