Amnesty International

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Sample Letter on Behalf of Hossein Khezri

Please write to Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for the Office of Human Rights; Amnesty International; and Human Rights Watch fulfilling Hossein Khezri's request to act on his behalf and asking for his sentence to be overturned and a new, impartial trial to be held, with access to legal counsel, protection from coerced confessions and no possibility of execution. A sample letter you can use, or modify, follows.

To:

Subject: Condemned Political Prisoner Hossein Khezri Appeals to Human Rights Organizations

Dear Name,

I am writing to you regarding the case of Hossein Khezri (also written Khazri or Khazari), a Kurdish political prisoner in Iran at imminent risk of execution. Mr. Khezri has asked human rights activists and organizations to appeal for his life. Mr. Khazeri is charged with Moharabeh and sentenced to death due to an alleged membership in Kurdish opposition parties.

Mr. Khezri did not receive adequate legal representation, as guaranteed by UN conventions. The judicial proceedings erroneously called a "trial" by the Islamic Republic consisted of a 7-or-8-minute appearance in court when the verdict was read. Although his lawyer was present in court at this time, Mr. Khezri was not permitted a defense statement or any other form of adequate legal representation.

Mr. Khezri was subjected to torture during the early months of his detention, which is an abhorrent violation of the UN Convention Against Torture, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Iran is a signatory. The Islamic Republic is also choosing to ignore another important responsibility, the one that states any nation still resorting to execution as a barbaric method of punishment is to reserve the practice only for the most extreme cases. Iran is violating Article 6(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) by condemning Hossein Khezri to death for membership in Kurdish opposition groups.

Likely as a result of his torture and the deplorable conditions in prison, Hossein has developed serious medical problems. On 7 May, Iran Human Rights Voice reported that he is being denied medical treatment and has lost nearly 25% of the vision in his right eye. Mr. Khezri is also being denied access to legal representation. Unbelievably, Iran is a signatory to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) which declares, "Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him." The ICCPR also protects the right to legal representation.

I urge you to speak publicly for Mr. Khezri's life and that his execution sentence is immediately overturned, as membership in a political organization is not justification for execution. Hossein Khezri should be granted a new trial with adequate legal representation and free from coercion, as demanded by international laws to which Iran is a signatory.

Sincerely,

Your Name

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