At dawn on January 30, authorities in Iran executed another 31-year-old Iranian Baluch political prisoner Javid Dehghan Khold in Zahedan Central Prison, southeastern Iran. The government had arrested this political prisoner in June 2015 for joining an anti-regime group. He was held for five-and-a-half years in prison.
Two days earlier, the prison guards had transferred this political prisoner to the quarantine section as a regular process for implementing the death penalty. Authorities called his mother to visit her loved one for the last time.
“The mother of my client has called me, saying, ‘[Javid] was transferred to the prison’s quarantine ward and urged me to go to the prison for the last visit,’” Mostafa Nini, the lawyer of the late Javid Dehghan, tweeted on January 28. “Three days ago, we registered an appeal, and I intended to urge the implementation of article 477 [for suspending the death sentence].”
“It’s never too late for execution, but it’s irreparable if implemented,” Nili had warned about the imminent execution of his client.
According to the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), Iranian authorities had held Javid Dehghan Khold in solitary confinement for a long time.
During interrogation, guards had severely tortured this political prisoner through beatings, floggings, having his thumbnail pulled out, and stripping him naked, coercing him to confess to a crime he had not committed.
On January 29, the Iranian Resistance called on human rights organizations and activists for urgent action to spare this political prisoner’s life. “The Iranian Resistance urges the United Nations Secretary-General, the UN Council and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights as well as other human rights organizations to take immediate action to save the life of this political prisoner [Javid Dehghan Khald],” the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) stated.
The NCRI “once again reiterates the need to send an international commission of inquiry to visit the Iranian regime’s prisons and meet with the prisoners, especially political prisoners and prisoners on death row,” it added.
Iran Executes Javid Dehghan Khold Despite International Warnings
Iranian authorities hanged this political prisoner while the international community had called on the government to stop the execution. Amnesty International had directly addressed the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to revoke this inhuman sentence.
Also, Amnesty’s Iran desk highlighted that Javid Dehghan had been deprived of a fair trial and had been tortured. “Iranian authorities are planning to execute Javid Dehghan, from Iran’s Baluchi minority, TOMORROW. Javid’s trial was grossly unfair… Khamenei must STOP his execution NOW!” Amnesty Iran tweeted.
Iranian authorities are planning to execute Javid Dehghan, from Iran’s Baluchi minority, TOMORROW. Javid’s trial was grossly unfair & he says he was tortured through beatings, floggings, having his thumb nail pulled out & stripped naked. @Khamenei_fa must STOP his execution NOW! pic.twitter.com/HZ4p44QpyX
— Amnesty Iran (@AmnestyIran) January 29, 2021
Furthermore, The United Nations Human Rights office condemned the execution of 28 inmates since mid-December, calling on the Iranian authorities to halt the imminent execution of Javid Dehghan.
“Iran: We strongly condemn the series of executions – at least 28 – since mid-December, including of people from minority groups. We urge the authorities to halt the imminent execution of Javid Dehghan, to review his and other death penalty cases in line with human rights law,” the UN Human Rights office tweeted.
🇮🇷#Iran: We strongly condemn the series of executions – at least 28 – since mid-December, including of people from minority groups. We urge the authorities to halt the imminent execution of Javid Dehghan, to review his and other death penalty cases in line with human rights law.
— UN Human Rights (@UNHumanRights) January 29, 2021
Notably, in recent weeks, the Iranian government has dramatically increased oppressive measures, including arbitrary arrests, extrajudicial executions, and torture of offenders in public. They have also applied strict rules against inmates, particularly political prisoners, prisoners of conscience, and followers of ethnic and religious minorities.
These oppressive measures are a clear display of the government’s concerns about upcoming protests, dissidents say. Iranian authorities quell any objection and protest initially, fearing that public hatred and distrust would suddenly spark a major uprising in the country.
The international community should not ignore Iranian authorities’ defiance of global values and should punish the ayatollahs for violations of the Iranian people’s fundamental rights, the opposition says.