We are writing to inform you of the imminent execution of six more ethnic Arab-Iranians (Ahwazi-Arabs) in Ahwaz, provincial capital of Khuzestan in southwestern
The six men currently awaiting execution were moved to a cell in Karoon prison in
1. Rasoul Ali Mazrea (65), a UNHCR-registered refugee
2. Ahmad Marmazi, (35), resident of Mashur, married with 2 children
3. Hamzah Sawari, 20 years old
4. Zamel Bawi (son of Ahwazi Arab tribal leader Hajj Salem Bawi)
5. Abdulemam Zaeri
6. Nazem Boryhi
Mr. Rasoul Mazrea, along with 4 other Ahwazis, was deported on May 2006 by the Syrian government to
The charges against them include hoisting the Ahwazi flag, naming their children Sunni names, converting from Shi'ism to Sunnism, preaching Wahabbism and being "Mohareb" or enemies of god, which carries death sentence. Other charges are "destabilizing the country", "attempting to overthrow the government", "possession of improvised explosives", "sabotage of oil installations" and being a "threat to national security."
Last year, Mr. Emadeldin Baghi, a leading Iranian human rights activist, in a letter to the chief of the judiciary, Ayatollah Hashemi Shahroudi, argued that the trials of Ahwazi Arabs were flawed, the charges baseless, and that the sentencing was based on a spurious interpretation of law and that no evidence has been presented. Mr. Nkbakht, a prominent defense lawyer in
This new wave of execution is the latest in a series of barbaric hangings, designed to intimidate and terrorize the indigenous Ahwazi-Arab population into submission.
On 10 January 2007, independent experts appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council, Mr. Philip Alston, the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Mr. Leandro Despouy, the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, and Mr. Manfred Nowak, the Special Rapporteur on torture, issued a joint statement urging the Iranian Government to "stop the imminent execution of seven men belonging to the Ahwazi Arab minority and grant them a fair and public hearing." Despite that plea, on 14 February, 2007 Ghasem Salami, 41, married with 6 children, Majad Albughbish, 30, single, were executed in Ahwaz by public hanging and a day later Mr. Risan Sawari, a 32 years old Ahwazi-Arab teacher was killed under torture in Karoon prison.
This is in addition to four executions on 24 January 2007 (Mohammad Chaabpour, Abdolamir Farjolah Chaab, Alireza Asakereh and Khalaf Khanafereh) and three on 19 December 2006 (Malek Banitamim, Abdullah Solaimani and Ali Matorizadeh). This brings the number of executions of Ahwazi Arab political and human rights activists in the past 9 months to at least 13.
The executions are in the context of a brutal clamp-down on Ahwazi Arabs protesting against ethnic discrimination and persecution. Although the Ahwazi Arab homeland in
We appeal to you to condemn the latest wave of execution and call upon Iranian authorities to halt the imminent execution of the others. We also appeal to you to call upon
For further information, please see a dossier of other human rights violations against indigenous and ethnic Ahwazi-Arabs in