Protests in Iran: warn that several protesters sentenced to death may be imminently executed

Ebrahim Raisi, President of Iran (Presidential Website/WANA via REUTERS) (WANA NEWS AGENCY/)

Several Iranians, sentenced to death for their involvement in the protests against the Islamic Republic, can be executed imminently despite the international outrage sparked by the first execution a few days ago, human rights groups warned this Sunday.

A wave of protests has shaken Iran since the death on September 16, Mahsa Aminia 22-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman who died after being detained by the morality police for not wearing the headscarf correctly.

At least 458 people have died in the repression of the demonstrations, according to the latest balance of the NGO Iran Human Rights (IHR), based in Norway, and at least 14,000 were arrested, according to the UN.

Thursday, Mohsen Shekaria 23-year-old man found guilty of attacking and wounding a paramilitary, was executed after a trial that several human rights groups called a “sham.”

Another ten people were sentenced to death for their participation in the demonstrations, which the authorities describe as “riots”, reported the Iranian judicial authority.

The repressive forces of Iran executed a prisoner who participated in the protests against the regime
Shekari was the first protester executed for his participation in the protests that rock Iran (Twitter)

According to Amnesty International, Iran is “preparing to execute” Mahan Sadrat22, after a quick and “extremely unfair” trial during which he was found guilty of having drawn a knife in the demonstrations, accusations that he denied in court.

Sentenced to death on November 3, he was transferred on Saturday to Karaj’s Rajai Shahr prison, near Tehran, “causing fears of imminent execution,” the UK-based NGO warned.

According to IHR, this sentence was confirmed by the Supreme Court, which means that it can be carried out. “Like the other death row inmates, he was denied any access to his lawyer” throughout the process.

Amnesty International also warned that the life of another young man, Sahand Nurmohammadzadehwas in danger after being sentenced to death on 6 November for having “knocked down highway guardrails and burned rubbish and tires”.

Amnesty and IHR also mentioned the case of Hamid Gharehasanlua doctor sentenced to death, who they say was tortured while in detention and whose wife was forced to testify against him.

FILE - In this photo taken in Tehran on Oct. 1, 2022 by a non-employee of The Associated Press and obtained by AP outside Iran, several Iranians protest the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after she was arrested by moral police.  (AP Photo/Middle East Images, File)
Iranians continue to protest following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after she was detained by the moral police (AP Photo/Middle East Images)

For the director of IHR, Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddamthe international response has to be “stronger than ever” to prevent these executions.

Several Western countries, as well as the European Union and the UN, condemned the execution of Mohsen Shekari. Canada and the United Kingdom have imposed sanctions on senior Iranian officials.

But human rights activists and NGOs want governments to take a stronger response, going as far as breaking diplomatic relations with Iran or expelling Iranian special envoys from Western countries.

Iran is the country that carries out the most death sentences, only behind China, according to Amnesty International. More than 500 people were executed in 2022, according to IHR.

In early December, the Supreme National Security Council stated that “more than 200 people”, including civilians and security forces, had been killed in Iran since September 16. A general of the Guardians of the Revolution reported more than 300 deaths.

With information from AFP

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