Evin

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Jafar Kazemi


Age: 47
Location: Evin Prison
Date condemned: Sentence upheld by appeals court 28 April 2010; upheld by the Supreme Court 29 July 2010 and sent to enforcement division.
Date executed: 24 January 2011

We have assembled an sample letter and contact information (updated July 29) to Iranian officials in response to Amnesty International's recent Urgent Action Alert regarding Jafar Kazemi, thought to be at risk of imminent execution.

We also urge you to write to the United Nations on Mr. Kazemi's behalf.


January 9 Jafar Kazemi is reportedly due to be executed this Tuesday, January 11. He is considered in imminent danger of execution, and his family members have urged international human rights activists to advocate for him and save his life.

Jafar Kazemi was arrested after Quds Day protests on 18 or 19 September 2009. He was tried in Branch 28 of Revolutionary Court and sentenced to death for Moharebeh, or "enmity against God" and can be executed at any time. His lawyer has had limited access to Jafar. Although she filed an appeal with the Judiciary, the sentence was upheld and finalized on 28 April and will be forwarded to the Implementation Unit. Kazemi was charged and convicted of "propaganda" against the Iranian regime and harshly interrogated and pressured in prison to make a televised confession, which he refused. In a letter to the UN's secretary general urging the UN to take action, Kazemi's wife describes his brutal treatment in prison.

Jafar Kazemi's conviction and death sentence is likely a direct result of two things: his participation in the 18 September Quds protests, and his son's affiliation with PMOI, also known as MEK or MKO.  Jafar Kazemi should not be held responsible for his son's affiliation, and political views are never justificiation for execution.

Jafar Kazemi's case is laden with rampant human rights violations. His arbitrary arrest and detention are violations of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Forced confession, which authorities tortured him to obtain, is a violation of of the ICCPR. Torture itself is a violation of Article 5 of the UDHR and Articles 7 and 10 of the ICCPR. Jafar's lawyer has stated that she has limited access to him and was not even permitted to see him to exchange Power of Attorney documents. Article 14(3)(d) of the ICCPR guarantees the right to defense through an attorney of one's own choosing. Finally, Article 6 of the ICCPR declares that, in countries where the death penalty has not been abolished, the death penalty is to be imposed only for the most serious crimes. Nothing in Jafar Kazemi's case justifies this murderous act.

Amnesty International has issued an Urgent Action item regarding Jafar Kazemi's death sentence and the imminent danger to his life.

On 21 May, Amnesty International confirmed there was an immediate threat to Mr. Kazemi's life and noted, "Ja’far Kazemi is now known to be among six men facing execution in Iran for their alleged links to the banned group, the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI). In some cases, these links may amount to no more than having contact with family members linked to the PMOI. The six could be executed at any time."

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