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Last Minute Calls To Save Two Political Prisoners In Iran From Hanging

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The families of two political prisoners in Iran are fighting to save them from looming execution amid Iran’s killing spree which last year alone saw over 800 people hanged.

Reza Rasaei and Habib Deris are the latest to face imminent execution, a trend which has peaked since the 2022 uprising, sparked by the death in morality police custody of Mahsa Amini, detained for not wearing her hijab according to Iran’s strict dress code.

Reza Rasaei was sentenced to death in 2022 amid the protests. He was accused of the murder of Nader Beirami, a senior intelligence officer of the IRGC, with his conviction being upheld by the Supreme Court in early December. 

Amnesty International earlier voiced its concern, urging Iranian authorities to halt the execution, citing a lack of clear evidence and fair trial standards. “I urge you to immediately grant Reza Rasaei access to his family, independently chosen lawyer, and adequate medical care,” read part of Amnesty’s letter of appeal.

Simultaneously, reports have emerged about Habib Deris being moved to solitary confinement, often a sign of a looming execution. A source close to the family of Deris told HRANA, a news agency of human rights activists in Iran, “He was transferred to solitary confinement without any clear reason provided.”

Deris is among six men sentenced to death by the Revolutionary Court in Ahvaz, accused of affiliation with the Harakat al-Nidal group and involvement in operations that resulted in the deaths of security personnel.

Also known as the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahwaz (ASMLA), the group is classified by Tehran as a ‘terrorist’ organization responsible for acts of terror including an attack on a military parade in Ahvaz on September 22, 2018, which killed 25 military and civilians.