Iran executes two more men in connection with protests
7th January 2023
The execution by hanging of Mohammad Karami and Mohammad Hosseini by Iran’s regime have have raised the number of protest-related executions to four.
Iran executed two men convicted of allegedly killing a security official during protests that erupted across the country, following the death of 22-year-old Kurdish Iranian woman Jina Mahsa Amini while in custody of the country’s moral police.
The two men were hanged on Saturday were identified by Iran’s judiciary as Mohammad Karami and Mohammad Hosseini. They were convicted of killing Ruhollah Ajamian who was a member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s volunteer Basij Force.
Besides Karami and Hosseini, the judiciary sentenced three others to death and 11 others to prison in relation to the same case. Two men have already been executed in December 2022, sparking global outrage
Iran carries out first known execution over protests
“Mohammad Mehdi Karami and Seyyed Mohammad Hosseini, principle perpetrators of the crime that led to the unjust martyrdom of Ruhollah Ajamian were hanged this morning,” the judiciary said in a statement carried by the official IRNA news agency.
What was the reaction to the executions?
Iran’s latest round of executions was condemned on Saturday by the United Nations and the European Union.
The UN rights office said it “deplored” the executions in a tweet, urging Iran to halt all executions. It added that they followed “unfair trials based on forced confessions.”
“It’s shocking that Iran continues to execute protesters despite international outcry,” the office said.
EU Foreign Affairs Chief Josep Borrell also called on Iran to end executions. He described the latest round as “another sign of the Iranian authorities’ violent repression of civilian demonstrations.”
European governments and parliamentarians were also critical.
Dutch Foreign Minister Wopke Hoekstra announced in a tweet that he will summon the Iranian ambassador in reaction.
“(I am) appalled by the horrible executions of demonstrators in Iran,” Hoekstra tweeted.
He said that the executions warranted a stronger EU response, adding that the next EU Foreign Affairs Council will discuss a fourth human rights sanctions package on Iran, which is being prepared.
German member of parliament Helge Limburg, who was a political sponsor of one of the executed men, told DW on Saturday the execution was “shocking.”
“A terrifying moment this morning when I got the news from Iran,” he said, stressing that people in Iran or elsewhere in the world will not be quiet amid such practices.
Iran’s judicial proceedings under scrutiny
The tribunals in Iran do not allow those on trial to choose their own lawyers or even see the evidence against them.
Footage was aired by the state TV showing Karami and Hosseini talking about the attack, however, activists allege that the broadcaster has for years aired what they describe as coerced confessions.
Human rights organisation, Amnesty International has said the trials ”bore no resemblance to a meaningful judicial proceeding.”
Since the protests began in September, courts have sentenced 14 people to death in connection with the demonstrations.
Of these, four have been executed, two others have had their sentences confirmed by the Supreme Court while six are awaiting new trials and two others can appeal.
mf/jcg (AP, AFP, Reuters)