Afghans Tortured in Iran for Reporting to UN Rapporteur

Iran - Ghezel Hesar Prison
Iran - Ghezel Hesar Prison

Iran - Ghezel Hesar Prison

Stop Fundamentalism – Three Afghan nationals are receiving torture in Iran for apparently passing on a list of executed Afghans to Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations Human Rights Rapporteur on Iran, reported the Human Rights Activists for Democracy in Iran on Monday.

According to the activists’ website, the three Afghans are under severe torture and have received threats by Iranian prison authorities that they will be hanged unless they confess how they have managed to provide a list of Afghan victims of Iranian executions to Dr. Shaheed.

The three are named as Mohammad Nour-Zehi, Abdolwahab Ansari, and Massoum Ali Zehi.  They were transferred to the intelligence section of the Ghezel Hesar Prison during Thursday through Saturday, last week and were interrogated for hours, say the activists.

The Iranian regime has been intensifying its oppressive measures including carrying out mass executions during recent months.  Opposition sources say the executions are preventive measures adopted in light of growing internal political and economic crisis in the country.  Opposition says the measures are adopted by direct orders from Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader.  Many attribute the crisis to the growing international sanctions imposed on Iran trying to force the ruling clergy to come clean about the country’s clandestine nuclear program feared to be military oriented.

An Iranian blogger and political activist, Sattar Beheshti, a laborer who was arrested on internet activism charges two weeks ago, was killed under torture last week.  The Iranian prison authorities forced the family of the victim to purchase a grave for him.  The authorities then buried the body quietly without allowing the family to have any kind of ceremony.

Opposition sources also report of another killing under torture in Southern city of Ahwaz.  The victim, Jamil Soveidi, 46, who was from the Iranian-Arab minority community, was arrested about a month ago.  There have been no reports about the charges against Mr. Soveidi and the conditions in which he was arrested, tortured and killed.

Human Rights Activists called on Dr. Ahmed Shaheed to refer Iran’s crimes to international criminal courts.