News : Human rights
- Published: Tuesday, 03 June 2014
Although Amnesty International issued an urgent call to action in an effort to halt the execution of 47-year-old Iranian resistance supporter GholamrezaKhosravi, there was barely enough time for any concerned parties to even read the report before that execution was carried out on Sunday morning. Khosravi was very suddenly transferred out of Evin Prison’s Ward 350 last Wednesday, and placed in a quarantined section of Gohardasht Prison, in a gestured that suggested but did not explicitly state that his execution would be imminent.
Neither his lawyer nor his family were kept apprised of developments in his case, and even when his family was finally allowed to visit him on Saturday evening, they did not know for certain that his execution was to take place only hours afterward.
Even before his final ordeal, Khosravi was kept in isolation throughout the entire period of time he was awaiting the announcement of his execution – some 40 months. Every move that the regime made in dealing with his case was aimed at keeping Khosravi separated from his supporters, and seeing to it that they had not information about his case.
This effort continued even after Khosravi was killed. Rather than allowing his loved ones to take him away for a funeral service and proper burial, they had him buried in secret on the night of his execution date. Perhaps this final act of secrecy was simply intended as a last insult to Khosravi, his family, and the organization that he supported. Perhaps the regime was worried about signs of torture being made known to the public. But in any event, government officials were evidently worried, at every step of the way, thatKhosravi would become a symbol, and that Iranian resistance members and human rights activists would rally around him, alive or dead.
Even in death, even beneath the Iranian regime’s veil of secrecy, Khosravi represents the difference that one person can make in a nation’s struggle for freedom. If the mullahs were so threatened by this one man that they felt compelled to kill him while suppressing all the details of their actions, one can imagine how they must feel about the movement as a whole. As history has taught us many times before, ideas cannot be killed as easily as the men who live and die for those ideas.
- Amnesty International report on Iran: Student and Academic Repression
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