The parents of a young Iranian, threatened with execution for his involvement in the protest movement that has been shaking the country for three months, begged in a video released on Monday, December 19, the judicial authorities to spare their son.
Mehdi Mohammad Karami may be the third Iranian executed in connection with protests sparked by the September 16 death of Mahsa Amini. According to Amnesty International, he is one of five people sentenced to death for an attack that claimed the life of a paramilitary, during a funeral ceremony in honor of a protester in Karaj, near Tehran.
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“I respectfully ask the judiciary, I implore you, please, […] to overturn the death sentence in the case of my son”Mehdi Mohammad’s father, Mashallah Karami, said in a video posted on social media.
He describes his son as a karate champion, member of the national team and having won competitions in Iran. At his side, his wife, who stands as if she were cradling a baby, then speaks up to ask that her son, in his twenties according to groups close to the protest movement, be spared.
11 people sentenced to death
Mehdi Mohammad Karami was sentenced less than a week “after the start of a rushed and unfair trial that bears no resemblance to valid legal proceedings”, denounced Amnesty. Mashallah Karami told local media that the family’s lawyer was unable to access his son’s case file and that the court-appointed lawyer did not respond to multiple calls.
Iran has announced 11 death sentences for involvement in “riots”whom he accuses of “foreign enemies”, in particular the United States and Israel, for having fomented. These sentences were pronounced after sometimes deadly violence, in particular against the security forces.
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According to Amnesty, in addition to 11 people already convicted, 15 are charged with offenses punishable by the death penalty. Human rights groups believe that the legal proceedings have been botched and are concerned about confessions obtained under torture.
Two first executions have already taken place, those of Mohsen Shekari on December 8 and Majidreza Rahnavard on December 12, both aged 23. The last was hanged in public. About 14,000 people have been arrested since mid-September, according to the UN, and 469 demonstrators have been killed, estimates the organization Iran Human Rights (IHR), based in Oslo.
Authorities have reported more than 200 deaths, including members of the security forces, since protests began, sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd, after her arrest for violating, according to the morality police, the strict dress code imposed on women.