Sunday, 8 December 2013


Ghazi Abbasi and three other men, Abdul-Reza Amir-Khanafereh, Abdul-Amir Mojaddami and Jasim Moghaddam Payam, have been executed. All were members of Iran’s Ahwazi Arab minority.  

The four men had been transferred to an unknown location on 3 November, from Karoun Prison, in the south-western province of Khuzestan.  Officials from the Ministry of Intelligence told the men's families on 2 December that they had been executed and buried, but would not reveal where Ghazi Abbasi, Abdul-Reza Amir-Khanafereh, Abdul-Amir Mojaddami and Jasim Moghaddam Payam had been buried.  Amnesty International understands that the families have been barred from holding memorial events and were not told the exact date of the executions, either in advance or after they had taken place.  A lawyer for one of the men has also said he had not been told beforehand of the executions. Under Iranian law, lawyers must receive 48 hours’ notification of any client’s execution.
The four men had been sentenced to death on 15 August 2012 by Branch One of the Revolutionary Court of Ahvaz for the vaguely worded charges of “enmity against God” (moharebeh) and “corruption on earth" (ifsad fil-arz). The charges related to a series of shootings that had allegedly led to the deaths of a police officer and a soldier. On 13 February 2013, Branch 32 of the Supreme Court upheld the four death sentences, though the lawyer for Abdul-Reza Amir-Khanafereh has said there was a pending appeal in his client’s case, possibly in relation to a separate case.
All four men denied any involvement in the shootings, saying their “confessions” had been obtained under torture and other ill-treatment, and they had recanted them in court. Both the lower court and Supreme Court judgements have acknowledged that some of the defendants retracted their “confessions” in court, saying they had been extracted under torture or other ill-treatment. However their claims of torture have not been investigated.  Torture and other-ill treatment, particularly during pre-trial detention, are common and are committed with impunity in Iran.
Many thanks to all who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network. 

This is the first update of UA 280/13. Further information: 13/040/2013/en 

Further information on UA: 280/13 Index: MDE 13/052/2013 Issue Date: 6 December 2013 

East Gulf Team
Middle East and North Africa Programme
Amnesty International
International Secretariat
1 Easton Street
London WC1X 0DW
United Kingdom

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