Toomaj Salehi

Toomaj Salehi

Iranian hip-hop artist

Toomaj Salehi is an Iranian hip-hop artist known for lyrics protesting the Iranian regime and calling for human rights. In September 2022, at the height of the nationwide “Women, Life, Freedom” protests, Salehi released several songs supporting women’s rights. One song, “Divination,” with the lyrics, “Someone’s crime was that her hair was flowing in the wind. Someone’s crime is that he or she was brave and…outspoken,” grew in popularity and was sung throughout the protests.

Salehi was first arrested in October 2022 and was released on bail in November 2023 after the Iranian Supreme Court overturned his charges of “corruption on Earth,” “propaganda against the system,” “collaboration with a hostile government,” “inciting people to murder and riot,” and “insulting the leadership.” On November 27, 2023, he posted a YouTube video describing the torture and forced confession he experienced during his detention. Three days later, armed plainclothed agents abducted Salehi. He was subsequently charged in two trials. On April 24, the Isfahan Revolutionary Court sentenced him to death.

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