Mohammad Zolfaghari

Iran hanged 4 juvenile last Persian year

Despite huge public and international opposition, Iran continued to juvenile executions and sentencing juveniles to death in the last Persian year.

Iran is one of the few countries that continues to execute juvenile offenders in blatant violation of the absolute legal prohibition on the use of the death penalty against people under the age of 18 years at the time of the crime.

Four minor offenders were executed after they reached 18 in the past (Persian) year. They have been identified as Alireza Tajiki, Amir Hossein Pourjafar, Ali Kazemi and Mahboubeh Mofidi. This is while Iran joined the UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child 25 years ago, according to which the execution of child offenders is prohibited.

The UN human rights office has said Iran is the worst in the world when it comes to sentencing minors to death — a crime under international law. Three minors were executed this January, and 80 more remain on death row.

Alireza Tajiki
photo : IHR

Alireza Tajiki, 15 years old
Alireza Tajiki was hanged in Adelabad Prison in Shiraz on August 10, 2017. He was arrested in 2012 in Fesa on charges of killing 16-year-old Ehsan Nisari and was then sentenced to death. According to reports, Alireza was kept in solitary confinement for 15 days after his arrest in the Shiraz Police Station without access to a lawyer or his family and confessed to the murder. The teenager had on several instances proclaimed his innocence in court but the court only accepted his initial confessions as evidence. According to Nasrin Sotudeh, one of his lawyers, there were other suspects in the case but the judges stopped the investigations into their involvement to condemn Alireza Tajiki to death.

photo : IHR

Amir Hossein Pourjafar, 16 years old
Amir Hossein Pourjafar was executed on January 4, 2018. The teenager killed Setayesh in Varamin’s Kheiabad at the age of 16.  The murder of Setayesh was covered extensively by the media… The rights of Amir Hossein as a suspect and his living conditions were overlooked in the incident and the media turned him into a beast that deserved no rights. But the issue that stands to be considered is that just as Setayesh was a child, Amir Hossein was also a child and the rights of a child have to be considered on both ends of the spectrum.

Ali Kazemi
photo : IHR

Ali Kazemi, 15 years old
Ali Kazemi was executed on January 30, 2018; He was a child offender who injured another person in a fight in which others were involved. The injuries led to the person’s death. He was hanged in the Central Bushehr Prison at the age of 22 and was only 15 at the time of the murder. According to reports, Ali survived the hanging and was rushed to the hospital. About an hour later, he passed away at the hospital.

photo : IHR

Mahboubeh Mofidi, 17 years old
Mahboubeh Mofidi was executed on January 30, 2018. Mahboubeh, who was sentenced to death at the age of 17 for killing her husband, was hanged in Noshahr Prison. Reports indicate that Mahboubeh was not informed about the contents of the capsules (she used to kill her husband), which were rice pesticides, but during the second hearing in court, she changed her story upon the threats and insistence of her family.

About the Author
Mohammad Zolfaghari is a Baha'i News reporter and human rights defender who worked exclusively on Human Rights Violations especially religious minorities in Iran and as a documentary maker with Amnesty International. Lives in Norway.
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