Two more protesters have been executed in Iran. As the Iranian judicial authorities announced on Saturday, the two men Mohammed-Mehdi K. and Sejed-Mohammed H. were hanged in the early hours of the morning. They are said to have been responsible for the death of a security officer during the system-critical protests in November, according to the judiciary on its web portal Mizan. This increases the number of demonstrators executed in the course of the more than three-month system-critical protests to four.
According to the judicial authority, the two men had admitted in court to having stabbed an allegedly unarmed security officer with a knife during protests in Karaj, a suburb of the capital Tehran. The security guard was a member of the notorious paramilitary Basij unit of the Revolutionary Guards. According to the Mizan report, the supreme court rejected the plea for clemency by the two accused and upheld the death sentence.
The sanctions are exacerbating the economic crisis
In the course of the nationwide protests, death sentences against rap musicians Mohsen S. and Majid-Resa R. had already been carried out in December for the alleged murder and attempted murder of two Basij members. The executions caused horror at home and abroad. The EU then decided on further sanctions against Iran, also because of the serious violations of human rights.
According to experts, the latest sanctions have exacerbated the already acute economic crisis and inflation. The national currency, the rial, lost more than 25 percent of its value after the protests. In view of the developments in the country, there is no end in sight to the financial crisis. Some observers even fear an economic collapse in the oil-rich country.
The trigger for the nationwide protests in Iran was the death of the Iranian Kurd Jina Mahsa Amini in mid-September. She died in police custody after being arrested by the so-called morality police for violating Islamic dress codes. Since then there have been repeated protests against the government's repressive course and the Islamic system of rule.
There are now fewer street demonstrations, which the security apparatus is cracking down on with the utmost severity. According to observers, the poverty of millions of Iranians has the potential to trigger another wave of protests. The protests continue in other forms. In large cities in particular, many women refuse to wear the obligatory headscarf. In December scores of shopkeepers did not open their shops for several days in protest.
Drastic restriction of the internet
The President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, called for more support for the demonstrators in Iran. You have to "stand up" and help the women and men who took to the streets in Iran for life and freedom, Metsola said on Saturday at the CSU state group retreat in Seeon Monastery in Upper Bavaria. These are things that are taken for granted in Europe. "But it is our job as a Union to defend, support and demand this again and again worldwide."
According to the latest estimates by the US-based organization Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), more than 500 people have died in the protests, including 70 minors and almost 70 police and security forces. More than 19,000 demonstrators were arrested.
There is conflicting information on the number of people arrested and sentenced to death, as some have had their death sentences overturned in appeal courts. There is talk of 20 demonstrators who are said to be on the judiciary's death list. The Iranian leadership has so far neither confirmed nor denied these and similar statements.
Due to drastic restrictions on the Internet, it has recently become increasingly difficult to organize demonstrations via social media or to distribute videos and photos about them. On Sunday, organizations have called for new demonstrations to mark the third anniversary of the downing of a Ukrainian passenger plane near Tehran - which is why Internet access was massively restricted again on Saturday. To this day, many of those left behind are of the opinion that those responsible were not sufficiently held accountable. Prominent Canadian-based activist Hamed Esmaeilion, who lost his family in the shooting down, also called for international rallies.
Web portal Mizan, Persian