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Stop the illegal political executions by the coup regime in Iran




August 16 In an interview with Rooz Online, Abdolreza Ghanbari's wife, Sakineh Jabeiee, denies the news of her husband's imminent execution and says she and her children are hopeful that his appeal will be successful. Ms. Jabeiee was able to meet with her husband on Monday, August 15 and says his case is still before the Appeals and Clemency Commission. She further goes on to ask concerned activists not to spread false rumors of his connection with the MEK and suggests the group may be exploiting Mr. Ghanbari's case for their own agenda. English translation of the interview and the original Persian-language version are available.

Note: While it is our policy not to politicize the cases of condemned political prisoners, Stop the Executions has refrained from updating these last few months due to the uncertain situation surrounding impending executions. The politicization of these cases by outside groups is not helpful to those prisoners who may otherwise benefit from international publicity and support. The Islamic Republic of Iran has begun to increase its practice of executing prisoners without having to resort to a noose, which would bring international attention to their crimes. Instead, they continue to deny medical treatment to political and other prisoners, who often develop serious medical conditions as a result of torture, neglect, and overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. There are a number of reliable sources for these stories, which is why we do not include them in our updates. As a result of this and the ongoing politicization of death penalty cases, Stop the Executions will unfortunately continue to update infrequently.

August 13 Abdolreza Ghanbari's appeal for clemency has been rejected and the case has been forwarded to the implementation division of the Revolutionary Court. He is considered in imminent danger of execution and the sentence may be carried out at any time.

May 17 The Supreme Court has confirmed Habibollah Latifi's death sentence and it has been forwarded to the implementation stage. Habibollah Latifi is in imminent danger of execution and the sentence may be carried out at any time.

May 2 Ahmad Saeed Sheikhi, Sherkoh Moarefi's lawyer, has confirmed that his client is indeed in imminent danger of execution.

April 11 Sherkoh Moarefi's mother, family and lawyers have denied the rumors about his impending execution. They said, "This news that has hit the media is rumor. Why they do it? Do they know that when we see the news every moment and every day for us is death? You know how our lives are drawn to destruction? Why do you play with our lives?"

March 24 Although the sentence had been suspended there are reports that Kurdish activist  Sherkoh Moarefi is now due to be executed again. His date of execution has been set for May 1, 2011.

March 10 The Human Chain Project held its first global event on March 5th in 10 cities across the globe. Human Rights advocates and freedom-loving people from different nationalities joined hands and formed Human Chains, demanding the abolition of Death Penalty, unconditional release of all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience and a moratorium on current wave of executions in Iran.

March 2 Farah Vazehan's death sentence has been overturned and reduced to a 17-year sentence in exile in Rajaei Shahr prison. While her life is not in immediate danger due to execution, we still believe that the charges against her have no merit and her prosecution is politically-motivated.

February 4 An interview with Sakineh Habibi, wife of Abdolreza Ghanbari has been published. She has asked for help from the international community: "I request from everyone to not allow a cultural activist and an unknown teacher be executed for the crime of being alone and not having anyone [of influence around]." There is a petition for his life and Persian2English will be organizing future action.

January 29 Dutch-Iranian citizen Zahra Bahrami was executed without warning this morning. The Dutch government has summoned its Iranian Ambassador and frozen ties with Iran. Furthermore, it advises its Dutch-Iranians not to travel to Iran.

January 24 Iranian state TV, quoting the Tehran prosecutor's office, has confirmed that Jafar Kazemi and Mohammad Ali Haj Aghaei were executed this morning in an undisclosed location.

January 15 Multiple sources are reporting that Hossein Khezri was executed this morning. It is important to note that, while a Kurdish political prisoner was executed at Oromiyeh Prison, it has not been confirmed to be Khezri. 

January 13 Hossein Khezri's family is still unable to find information about his whereabouts or condition. Authorities have told them simply that he was moved to Tehran for the completion of his sentence. They fear he may have been secretly executed.

January 10 Editor's note: As is typical with human rights reporting in Iran, there is some confusion about whether or not Jafar Kazemi, Mohammad Ali Haj Aghaei and others are scheduled to be executed tomorrow. However, we stress that all of the condemned prisoners are not only in danger of being executed at some point, but they are in prison for political reasons and subject to intimidation and torture. Their rights are violated daily, whether they are in imminent danger of execution or not.

January 9 Reports state that both Jafar Kazemi and Mohammad Ali Haj Aghaei are due to be executed on Tuesday, January 11.

January 6 Hossein Khezri's brother and other family members were able to visit him in Oromiyeh Prison yesterday. According to an interview, it was staged as a final visit and prison authorities told them that he will be moved and "this is the last time you will ever see him." The family is, of course, concerned that Mr. Khezri is in immediate danger of execution.

Jafar Kazemi's sentence was sent to the enforcement division. The sentence can be carried out at any time and is considered in imminent danger of execution.

January 5 As expected, Judge Salavati of Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court has sentenced Zahra Bahrami to death for the transport and sale of drugs. According to reports, she is also charged with Moharebeh, which can carry the death penalty as well. She has denied all charges against her and said that she only confessed under torture in Evin Ward 209.

Dutch Foreign Minister Uri Rosenthal said in a statement, "I am extremely concerned about the situation...[and] insist on information, the possibility to provide her with consular assistance, and a fair course of justice." Iranian authorities are still refusing to allow Bahrami Dutch consular access, as they do not recognize her dual citizenship.

January 3 There is still no information about the whereabouts of condemned prisoner Hossein Khezri.

January 2, 2011 Condemned Kurdish prisoner Hossein Khezri has been removed from Oromiyeh Prison agents from the Intelligence Ministry. He is considered in extreme danger of imminent execution.  Although the exact reason for his cell extraction is not known, this is typical before a scheduled execution.

Video courtesy of @shariatmadari.

December 29 Ali Saremi's body has been moved from Evin to Kahrizak Detention Center in southern Tehran. Eight members of Ali Saremi's family and friends have been released, apparently after pledging that they would not return to demonstrate outside of Evin Prison. His nephew, Mohammad, was reportedly arrested today after hanging a photograph of his murdered uncle outside his home, which is a traditional sign of mourning.

A letter from Zeynab Saremi to her executed father: My dearest father, I wish to know whether you felt our presence behind the walls of Evin!

Another site reports that some members of Habibollah Latifi's family have been released, but this has not yet been independently confirmed.

December 28 11:30 am: Authorities have arrested Saremi's family members and others who were staging a demonstration outside of Evin Prison this morning. Among those arrested are Poya Saremi, Mahin Saremi, Ali Saremi's daughter and her husband. Family members of other political prisoners are also reported to be arrested.

9:30 am: HRANA confirms the execution of 62-year old Ali Saremi this morning at Evin Prison.

3:30 am: Ali Saremi and Reza Boukani's families have gathered outside of Evin Prison. Reports state that Saremi's cellmates fear he was taken to Evin to be executed.

December 27 9:25 pm: Condemned prisoner Ali Saremi has been transferred from Gohardasht (Rajaee Shahr) prison to an unknown location. Another condemned man, Reza Sharifi Boukani, has also been moved to an unknown location.

9:00 pm: Concerns are growing over Habibollah Latifi and his family's condition. The names of twenty people arrested at the family home last night have been released. They include Iraj Latifi Abbas, Enghbal, Shahin, Elahe and Bahar Latifi. There is still no confirmation of the family's whereabouts or condition.

7:45 am: Authorities are arresting others in the community who have been helping the Latifi family in recent days. In the meantime, his lawyer has returned to Tehran.

6:25 am Tehran time: Reports from sources, including Radio Farda, now include Habibollah Latifi's sister-in-law among those arrested last night. His youngest sister, who was not arrested, said that agents used pepper spray to subdue her and render her unconscious for several hours. She told RAHANA that eight family members have been arrested and she does not know their location or the reasons for their arrests.

United4Iran has updated their eLetter to push for Mr. Latifi's release.

Other ways to help include: contacting media and signing the two existing petitions. Activists also encourage everyone to share the news widely on their existing networks.

December 26 Reports have emerged that Habibollah Latifi's family members have been arrested at their home. There are also unconfirmed reports that local activists have been arrested. There is conflicting information as to the number of family members arrested, but early reports suggest that his brother, two sisters, father, and another person at the house are among those detained. Up to 30 security officials conducted the raid and confiscated the family's computer and other materials.  Drewery Dyke, Amnesty International's Iran Researcher, has also confirmed the arrests.

December 25 Thanks in part to the actions of protesters and activists in and outside of Iran, Habibollah Latifi's execution has been stayed.

December 23 Urgent: Kurdish prisoner  Habibollah Latifi is in imminent danger of execution. His lawyer confirmed reports that he is due to be executed this Sunday, December 26, in Sanandaj prison.

December 9 Zahra Bahrami is expected to go on trial this Sunday, December 12 in front of Judge Salavati in branch 15 of the Revolutionary Tribunal. Judge Abolghasem Salavati is known as the "Hanging Judge" or the "Judge of Death." Salavati was responsible for the execution sentences of Abdolreza Ghanbari, Mehdi Eslamian (executed May 9, 2010), and at least 12 others. He also sentenced the Alaei brothers to years in prison for AIDS research and called Majid Tavakoli, "Miss Tavakoli" at his trial.

December 7 Dutch citizen Zahra Bahrami was transferred from the general women's ward to the methadone ward Evin Prison where she is housed with general criminals and addicts.

December 5 Concerning development: condemned Kurdish prisoner Habibollah Golparipour was transferred to Oroumiyeh prison. His death sentence was upheld by the supreme court on September 5, and the prison transfer is a sign that authorities may be preparing to implement the execution order.

December 1 Updated information on Zainab Jalalian's medical situation: reports state that she requires treatment for her eyes, but prison authorities are denying her this, saying it is not necessary because she is on death row. Her eye problems are likely a result of long-term torture sustained in prison.

November 21 Mohammad Reza Haddadi is being denied necessary kidney surgery until his father pays the exorbitant fees required by prison authorities.

Zainab Jalalian is reportedly ill and being denied medical treatment.

November 19 Amnesty International has issued an urgent action statement (PDF) for Kurdish prisoner Hossein Khezri. Amnesty urges people to write to the Iranian authorities and appeal for Khezri's life.

November 17 Urgent: The Supreme Court has issued a memo to Oromiyeh Prison officials ordering Hossein Khezri's execution. The enforcement unit of the prison has asked for permission to carry out the order. He is in imminent danger. Furthermore, his attorney resigned under suspicious circumstances this morning.

November 7 Amnesty International has called for the immediate commutation of all death sentences in the Islamic Republic of Iran. They also urge "authorities to review and repeal death penalty laws [and] to disclose full details of all death sentences and executions."

November 6 There is an English translation of Hossein Khezri's letter. In it, he documents brutal interrogation and torture and appeals to human rights organizations and lawyers "to accept my request and be my voice to humanity." Khezri says, "I will attempt to report to the world some of the situation to which I am still subject, in hopes that there be someone to hear my voice."

November 5 Condemned Kurdish prisoner Hossein Khezri is asking that human rights organizations and the United Nations to appeal for his life. We have created a sample letter to send to Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the United Nations.

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