An Iranian lawmaker says the execution of four Kurdish prisoners, who were hanged in Iran on Monday is a lesson to anyone who wants to overthrow the regime.
“These executions are a lesson for anyone who wants to stand against the will of the Iranian nation because the Iranian nation will punish them for their deeds,” Mehdi Sa’adati, a member of the parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee told the semi-official Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) Monday.
Iran’s parliament is controlled by hardliners, many of whom come from the ranks of the Revolutionary Guards, and have fully supported security and intelligence agencies in their crackdown on dissent.
The four prisoners — Pejman Fatehi, Mohsen Mazloum, Mohammad (Hazhir) Faramarzi and Wafa Azarbar – who were hanged at Ghezel Hesar Prison in Karaj, near Tehran, were accused of planning to blow up a defense ministry facility in Najafabad, Esfahan Province in July 2022. They were accused of being Israeli agents.
“Cooperation with Mossad has no outcome other than being executed. This is the Iranian nation’s demand,” he added.
Iranian authorities claim that the four young men were apprehended in a village in Iran’s West Azarbaijan Province, just days before they were set to execute their planned operation. They further allege that these individuals received training from Israel’s Mossad in three African countries, including Tanzania, where they practiced using similar structures as target simulations.
The prisoners, who belonged to the Kurdish Komala party, were allegedly forced into making false self-incriminating confessions, which the state television (IRIB) aired in October 2022, and were tried behind closed doors without due process.
Their lawyer, Masoud Shamsnejad, has said that he was not allowed to see the case files and the Supreme Court turned down his request for a retrial for lack of submission of court documents.
The executions have enraged many Iranians, particularly those in Kurdish areas, where they went on a general strike on Tuesday. Seven Kurdish human rights organizations including Hengaw Organization for Human Rights, as well the Komala Party of Iranian Kurdistan called for the general strike in the Kurdish areas of Iran in protest to the executions and to draw the attention of the international community to the worrying human rights situation in Iran’s Kurdish areas.
“I assure that Kurdistan will not remain silent in the face of the killing of its children,” Abdullah Mohtadi, secretary general of the Komala Party, tweeted Monday.
Rights organizations have also warned that Iran’s Supreme Court has confirmed the death sentence passed on six other Kurdish prisoners who will be in imminent danger of execution.
Iran International has received reports about total or partial internet disruptions in some areas of Iran’s Kordestan Province.
Amnesty International said in a tweet on Monday that it was horrified by the arbitrary execution of the four Kurdish dissidents “after a grossly unfair secret trial”.
“Their execution comes amid an alarming spike in executions by Iran’s authorities, including as tool of political repression against protesters, dissidents & oppressed ethnic minorities, particularly Kurds & Baluchis, who are disproportionately targeted by the death penalty,” Amnesty said while urging the international community to condemn the Islamic Republic’s “killing spree and intensified use of the death penalty as a tool of repression.”
Rights organizations and activists have called on Nada Al-Nashif, the UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, to cancel her visit to Tehran from 2 to 5 February to investigate executions and women’s rights violations in protest to the regime’s executions.
“The timing of this visit, the context in which it would take place and its modalities raise very serious concerns. We respectfully urge you to hear these concerns and to reconsider the opportunity, timing and modalities of this visit,” Article 19, an international human rights organization, said in an open letter addressed to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk and Al-Nashif.