In Iran, a demonstrator has been executed for the first time since the beginning of the system-critical mass protests about three months ago. A revolutionary court in the capital Tehran sentenced him to death in accordance with Islamic legal opinion for "waging war against God", the state news agency IRNA reported on Thursday. He is said to have attacked a member of the notorious paramilitary Basij militia with a gun, causing terror and blocking a road. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) condemned the execution. "The Iranian regime's inhumanity knows no bounds," she wrote.
According to Irna, the man was arrested in Tehran at the end of September. The Supreme Court rejected his appeal. According to media reports, his name was Mohsen Shekari. The method of execution was initially unknown, but the death penalty is usually carried out by hanging.
Rallies against the leadership of the Islamic Republic are still ongoing. Since the beginning of the week, many shopkeepers, especially in the Iranian Kurdish province, have closed their shops in protest. A massive deployment of security forces was present in large parts of the country to prevent gatherings and protests.
Experts were surprised by the speed of the process and execution. The human rights organization Amnesty International expressed its horror and spoke of an "extremely unfair sham trial". According to the news portal Misan, which is close to the judiciary, Schekari was arrested on September 25 and the death sentence was read out on November 20.
Foreign Minister Baerbock wrote on Twitter that Schekari had been sentenced and executed "in a perfidious quick trial" because he had disagreed with the regime. However, the threat of execution will not stifle people's desire for freedom.
France's Foreign Ministry also expressed sharp criticism. This execution joins numerous other serious and unacceptable violations of fundamental rights and freedoms committed by the Iranian authorities, the ministry said. France reiterates its commitment to the right to peaceful demonstrations and strongly condemns the repression directed against the Iranians demonstrating.
Several death sentences have been imposed on demonstrators in recent weeks. The judiciary has announced a tough course in the face of the protests. In parliament, too, members of parliament called for harsh sentences, up to the death penalty, for the thousands of detained protesters. Human rights activists estimate that at least 470 demonstrators have been killed and more than 18,000 arrested since mid-September.
The prominent Iranian blogger and human rights activist Hossein Ronaghi, who was recently released on bail, wrote to the political leadership on Twitter: "We will not turn a blind eye to the executions, the execution of any protester will have serious consequences for you ." Taking one person's life is "like taking the life of all of us. Can you set up the gallows for all of us?"
Number of executed death sentences increased
Human rights activists criticize the fact that the number of death sentences carried out in Iran has risen significantly since arch-conservative President Ebrahim Raisi took office last summer. According to Amnesty International, at least 250 people were executed in the first six months of this year alone, mainly for drug-related offences.
The trigger for the nationwide protests was the death of the Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini. She died in police custody on September 16 after being arrested by the Morality Police for breaking the Islamic dress code.
Report at Irna Tweet Ronaghi Report at Misan Tweet Baerbock Tweet Amnesty Iran