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Relative Of Hanged Ahwazis Calls for International Prosecution Of Judges

A relative of two executed Ahwazi Arabs is calling on the international community to issue a warrant for the arrest of two Iranian judge...

Iran: Psychologist sentenced to 20 years imprisonment

A 52 year old respected psychologist at Ahwaz's Shahid Chamran hospital, whose son was executed and daughter was murdered, has been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment in Ardabil prison, hundreds of miles away from his home.

Dr Awdeh Afrawi is an Ahwazi Arab human rights activist. In October 2005, he and his 17 year old son Ali were arrested following bomb attacks on oil facilities. Ali was executed in March (pictured) after giving a forced confession on Khuzestan TV while drugged by his torturers (click here for more information). Dr Afrawi's daughter was killed by security forces during demonstrations. He has remained in solitary confinement since his arrest and has been denied contact with his lawyers. He and his son, a highly intelligent and promising high school student, were both accused of carrying out the bomb attacks on oil facilities. No-one was injured or killed in the attacks which shut down five oil wells (click here for more information). Dr Afrawi and his son were charged with "waging war on God", a vaguely defined crime covering any opposition to the regime's policies which carries the death penalty.

According to family members, Dr Afrawi repeated his claim during his closed trial and throughout his detention that he has done nothing wrong and has not broken any law. He simply advocated the legitimate basic human rights of indigenous Ahwazi Arabs, including the right to study in their own native Arabic language and participation in the socio-political and economic process of their homeland, al-Ahwaz or Khuzestan.

The Iranian regime has destroyed Dr Afrawi's family, who were entirely innocent. Dr Afrawi is now a broken man who is likely to die a miserable death in prison. He has been punished for calling for the government to act in accordance with Article 19 of the Iranian Constitution, which states that "All people of Iran, whatever the ethnic group or tribe to which they belong, enjoy equal rights; color, race, language, and the like, do not bestow any privilege." Ahwazi rights activists are calling on the international community to press for Dr Afrawi's release from prison and compensation for the regime's illegal killing of his children.