The NGOs Amnesty International and the Abdorrahman Boroumand Center denounced this Wednesday a ‘execution frenzy’ in Iranwhere else than 250 people suffered the death penalty in the first six months of the year “after systematically unfair trials”.
“In the first half of 2022, the Iranian authorities executed at least one person per day on average”, denounced in a statement Diana Eltahawy, deputy director for North Africa and the Middle East at Amnesty International.
“The state apparatus is carrying out large-scale killings across the country as part of a hateful crackdown on the right to life”, he added.
Due to this “frenzy of executions”, at a “frightening pace”, Iran could very quickly exceed the already very high number of death sentences imposed in 2021, i.e. 314, according to the statement.
“Though the actual figures are certainly higher”, of the 251 executions registered between January 1 and June 30, 2022, 146 convicts were found guilty of murder, “in the framework of a well-established practice of systematic executions”, according to this text.
The NGOs detail that in Iran the death penalty is imposed after “systematically unfair” trials, and that confessions “obtained under torture are routinely used as evidence.”
At least 86 other convicts were executed for crimes related to legislation on narcotics that, “according to international law, they should not be punishable by the death penalty,” they point out.
“This increase in executions, especially in public, shows once again that Iran is out of step with the rest of the world, while 144 countries reject the death penalty in law or in practice,” said Roya Boroumand, executive director. of the Abdorrahman Boroumand Center for Human Rights in Iran, the other Iranian NGO that signs the text.
The groups confirmed a report by another NGO, Iran Human Rights, according to which Iran also carried out on Saturday his first public execution in two years.
The statement also said that comments by Iranian officials acknowledging the problem of prison overcrowding had raised fears that “the increase in executions is related to official efforts to reduce the number of prisoners.”
Rights groups also expressed alarm that more than a quarter of those executed so far in 2022 were members of the baluchi ethnic minority of Iran, which only represents five percent of the population.
Activists say Iran is in the throes of a major crackdown as protests over living conditions continue in a dire economic crisis.
Labor activists, intellectuals and also filmmakers have been arrested, including director Mohammad Rasoulof, whose lacerating film “There Is No Evil”, about the effects of the use of the death penalty in Iran, won the Golden Bear at the Festival Berlin Film Festival 2020.
(With information from AFP)
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