Execution of two opposition supporters in Iran

2010/01/28

Published on German TV news channel “Tagesschau” on January 28 2010
Source (German): http://www.tagesschau.de/ausland/iran1024.html

For months, protesters against the government of Ahmadinejad have been taking to the streets. (photo: REUTERS)



Two supporters of the Iranian opposition were executed. This was the first execution of death penalties since the beginning of the protests last summer. The two men were charged with being “enemies of God”. This was reported by the official news agency ISNA.

Quoting a statement released by the Tehran prosecutor’s office, ISNA reported that in October Mohammed Reza Ali Zamani and Arash Rahmani Pour were sentenced to death by hanging. They were also charged with conspiracy to topple the Islamic leadership.

Membership of monarchist group
The human rights organization Amnesty International had taken action in support of Zamani who was accused of being a member of the monarchist group “Assembly of the Kingdom of Iran”.

According to his lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, Rahmani Pour had also been accused of being a member of this group. Talking to the news agency AFP she rejected, however, that her client had any part in the protests following the disputed re-election of president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in June 2009. The 19 year old had been arrested prior to the elections in the Iranian month of Farwardin (March/April).

According to Sotoudeh, she was barred from defending her client in a “show trial” held in July. Rahmani Pour had confessed due to threats that were imposed on his family. She was “shocked” hearing about the executions, since she and the family of the convict had still been expecting the verdict of the appeals court, says Sotoudeh.

Nine convicts on death row awaiting judgement
Nine other opposition supporters who were sentenced to death are currently waiting for the decision of an appeals court. Should they be convicted, the judgement will be enforced in accordance with the law, says ISNA.

Again and again after Ahmadinejad’s disputed re-election, the opposition in Iran has been taking to the streets. The unrest, during which dozens of people were killed and more than 4000 dissidents were arrested, plunged Iran into one of the severest domestic crises since the founding of the Islamic Republic 30 years ago.

In the crackdown of the protests that took place in late December, according to official reports, eight people were killed. Among them was the nephew of the politican and oppositionist Mir Hossein Moussavi.

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