Four Children From Nomadic Communities Severely Injured in a Landmine Accident

On January 6, four children in Mehran County, Ilam Province were severely injured due to a landmine explosion. Each year, explosive remnants of landmines from the Iraq-Iran War cause the death or injury of many people at border areas.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Mehr News Agency, four children from a nomadic community aged 13 to 14 years old were severely injured due to a landmine blast. They all were hospitalized in Mehran County.

There are about 42,000 square kilometers of war zones in Iran that have not been fully demined from the Iran-Iraq war.

In flagrant violation of international conventions, the regime is still using landmines to secure its borders.

Accordingly, there are still thousands of landmines planted in Iran in the border areas with Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq. The regime also planted many landmines in Kurdistan during the conflicts of the 1980s.

Fifteen Year Old Girl Dies by Suicide in Sanandaj City

On January 2, a fifteen year old girl in Sanandaj City died by suicide. According to statistics by the Forensic Medicine Organization, 7 percent of those who died by suicide are underage.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the girl was identified as Arnika Jahanbin. Her motivation for suicide is still unknown.

HRANA earlier reported on deaths by suicide from three other underage children over the last month in the Kurdish region of Iran.

Ten Year Old Child Killed by Landmine Blast in Elam Province

In a border area near Dehloran County in Elam Province, a landmine blast killed a 10 year old child.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Mehr News Agency,

“A 10 year old child from nomadic people was grazing the cattle when one of the cattle stepped on a landmine and the child was hit in the chest by the shreds”, commented Dehloran police commander Colonel Manoochehr Makki.

“The wounded child was sent to a hospital but was lost due to severe injuries,” he added.

Every year, landmine explosions take several victims in  Iran’s border areas. There are about 42,000 square kilometres of war zones in Iran that have not yet been fully demined from the Iran-Iraq war.

In flagrant violation of international conventions, the regime is still using these landmines to secure its borders.

Accordingly, there are still thousands of landmines planted in Iran in the border areas with Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq. The regime also planted many landmines during the conflicts of the 1980s in Kurdistan.

Juvenile Offender Arman Abdolali Executed in Rajai Shahr Prison

Earlier this Wednesday, November 24, juvenile offender Arman Abdolali was executed in Rajai Shahr Prison.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, Abdolali was relocated to a solitary confinement cell yesterday as a regular procedure before carrying out the execution, and then executed in the morning.

Judiciary Media Center announced that on Wednesday morning, Arman Abdolali, who was previously convicted of murdering his girlfriend at the age of 17, was executed in Rajai Shahr Prison.

Last night, in response to his relocation to a solitary confinement cell, Amnesty International asked Iranian authorities to halt the imminent execution. Amnesty International had also previously urged that the sentence be stopped and pointed out, “The use of the death penalty against people who were under 18 at the time the crime was committed is prohibited under international law and constitutes an abhorrent assault on child rights.”

In 2013, while he was underage, Abdolali was indicted on the charge of murdering his girlfriend, Ghazaleh Shakur. During interrogation, he confessed to killing her but later on, he denied the charges, claimed that the confession has been extracted under torture and pleaded his innocence. The victim’s body was never found.

After the first confirmation of the sentence, Abdolali’s lawyer claimed him as innocent and asked for a retrial, which was granted by the Supreme Court of Iran. In the second retrial, the death sentence was upheld after six months by the Supreme Court of Iran and thereafter by an appellate court.

Fifteen-Year-Old Kolbar Soroush Rahmani Commits Suicide After Mules Killed By Regime’s Military Forces

On Wednesday, November 17, a 15-year-old kolbar (cross-border carrier) committed suicide by hanging after his mules were killed by regiment forces at the border.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Didban Iran News Agency, the boy has been identified as Soroush Rahmani, a resident of Hani Garmaleh village in Paveh County.

Reportedly, his house was held as collateral for bank debt. Rahmani had borrowed a small amount of money to buy mules to work as kolbar at border areas, so the regime’s killing of the mules effectively destroyed his livelihood.

HRANA’s annual human rights report has specifically documented cases in which military forces’ use of live ammunition against citizens has led to their injury or death. According to the 2020 report, other than material damages such as loss of pack animals due to road accidents, frost, or avalanche, 36 kolbars have been shot dead, and 109 have been injured by military forces and border guards.

 

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Juvenile Offender Arman Abdolali in Imminent Danger of Execution in Rajai Shahr Prison

Arman Abdolali, who was previously sentenced to death for a murder charge from when he was a child, is in imminent danger of execution in Rajai Shahr Prison.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, despite his denial of having committed the crime, and despite the fact that the victim’s body was never found, the criminal court of Tehran Province sentenced Abdolali to death. The verdict was upheld twice by the supreme court of Iran.

Abdolali was reportedly transferred to a solitary confinement cell, as is the protocol for inmates on death row in the days before their execution, yesterday. In July of this year, his lawyer had informed about the forwarding Abdolali’s case to the Executive Branch of Tehran Criminal Court.

“Iran continues to use the death penalty for crimes committed by people under the age of 18, in violation of its obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child,” Amnesty International expressed in a statement, calling for Iranian authorities to halt Abdolali’s execution.

In 2013, when he was underage, Arman Abdolali was indicted on the charge of murdering his girlfriend, Ghazaleh Shakur. During interrogation, he confessed to killing her but later on, he denied the charges and pleaded his innocence.

After the first confirmation of the sentence, Abdolali’s lawyer claimed him as innocent and asked for a retrial, which was granted by the Supreme Court of Iran. In the second retrial, the death sentence was upheld after six months both by the Supreme Court of Iran and thereafter by an appellate court.

Husband Confesses to Murder of 14-Year-Old Mobina Souri

Five days after news broke of the death of 14-year-old Mobina Souri, her husband confessed to having committed the murder. Souri is the victim of  what is classified under Islamic Law as an “honor killing”.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, “honor crimes” or “honor killings” are acts of assault or murder, usually towards women and usually committed by male relatives.

Under Islamic Law, in murder cases where the (usually-female) victim has been accused of “disgracing the family’s honor”, exemptions and sentence reductions are frequently granted to the murderers.

The scope of the ways “disgracing family honor” can be defined is extremely broad; women and girls can be accused for being victims of rape, getting a divorce (even from an abusive husband), committing adultery, or being suspected of having sexual relations before marriage.

14-year-old Mobina was also a victim of child marriage and was married to the young cleric in her village who ultimately killed her. The other suspects were released after the husband confessed.

 

14-Year-Old Mobina Murdered in Lorestan in what Islamic Penal Code Classifies as “Honor Killing”

On Monday, August 30, 14-year-old Mobina, who was from the Suri area of Lorestan Province was murdered by a family member in what is classified under Islamic Law as an “honor killing”.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Rokna, Mobina was the victim of a child marriage who was married to a young cleric in her village. She was murdered after relatives presumed she had an affair.

Under Islamic Law, in murder cases where the (usually-female) victim has been accused of  “disgracing the family’s honor”, exemptions and sentence reductions are frequently granted to the murderers.

“The murder happened due to family disputes, and the accused has been identified and arrested,” said the Lorestan police chief. “He is one of the relatives of the victim.”

“Honor crimes” or “honor killings” are acts of assault or murder, usually towards women and usually committed by male relatives.

The scope of the ways “disgracing family honor” can be defined is extremely broad; women can be accused for being victims of rape, getting a divorce (even from an abusive husband), committing adultery, or even just having sexual relations before marriage.

Dizelabad Prison Authorities Execute Juvenile Offender Sajad Sanjari Without Notifying Family

At dawn on Monday, August 2, Sajad Sanjari was executed in Dizelabad Prison in Kermanshah. His family was not notified or allowed to visit him before the execution.

According HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Amnesty International, Sanjari was arrested in 2010 at the age of 15 on murder charges and sentenced to death.

Diana Eltahawy, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International, stated, “With the secret execution of Sajad Sanjari, the Iranian authorities have yet again demonstrated the utter cruelty of their juvenile justice system. The use of the death penalty against people who were under 18 at the time of the crime is absolutely prohibited under international law and constitutes a cruel assault on child rights.”

In December 2016, the spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights called on the authorities of the Islamic Republic to suspend the execution of Sajad Sanjari, a juvenile accused of murder.

Iran ranks first in the world in citizen executions per capita, according to international organizations. The Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) reported that between January 1 and December 20 of 2020, at least 236 citizens were executed.

One of these citizens was executed publicly, and two were juvenile offenders. An additional 95 citizens were sentenced to death. According to the same report, more than 72% of executions in Iran are not reported by the government or the judiciary, which human rights organizations call “secret” executions.

Recently, in an interview with Agence France-Presse, Secretary of the state-run High Council for Human Rights, Majid Tafreshi, said that the Islamic Republic executes juvenile offenders “three to four times a year”, and claimed this should not be considered a human rights violation.

“The fact that Sajad Sanjari was executed in secret, denying his family and him even the chance to say goodbye, is an alarming pattern of the Iranian authorities carrying out executions in secret or at short notice to minimize the chances of public and private interventions to save people’s lives” Eltahawy further stated of Sanjari’s execution. “We urge the Iranian authorities to put an end to these abhorrent violations of the right to life and children’s rights by amending the penal code to ban the use of the death penalty against anyone who was under 18 at the time of the crime immediately.”

Juvenile Offenders Hossein Shahbazi and Arman Abdol Ali at Urgent Risk of Execution as Amnesty International Calls for Suspension of their Sentences

Amnesty International has issued a statement calling on Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei, the head of the judiciary of Iran, to suspend the death sentences of juvenile offenders Hossein Shahbazi and Arman Abdol Ali.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Tasnim, Hossein Shahbazi was arrested on charges of murder in December 2018 when he was less than 18 years old and was sentenced to death a year later by a criminal court in Fars Province. The verdict was approved by the Supreme Court. Shahbazi is being held in Adelabad Prison in Shiraz.

Arman Abdol Ali was previously sentenced to death by the Tehran Criminal Court for murder and the sentence was upheld by the Supreme Court. The lawyer of the victim’s parents announced that the case of Arman Abdol Ali is being sent to the Judgment Execution Unit of the Tehran Criminal Court.

The death sentence of Arman Abdol Ali, which was originally scheduled to be carried out in January 2017, was stopped after the parents of the victim gave Arman a month to respond to the suspicions in this case.

Arman Abdol Ali has been accused of killing his girlfriend Ghazaleh Shakur in 2013 when he was less than 18 years old.

According to the HRANA annual report for the year 2020, at least 4 juvenile offenders were executed in Iran last year, and 2 other juvenile offenders have been sentenced to death.

Recently, in an interview with Agence France-Presse, Secretary of the state-run High Council for Human Rights, Majid Tafreshi, said that the Islamic Republic executes juvenile offenders “three to four times a year”, and claimed this should not be considered a human rights violation.