Rights group censures Iran for execution of minors    Fri. 22 Jul 2005


Iran Focus

London, Jul. 22 – The human rights group Amnesty International today urged the Iranian government to put a halt to the execution of minors and individuals sentenced to death for crimes they committed as children.

The international rights group pointed to the execution of three such youths in the Islamic Republic in the past week despite the country being a signatory to the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which stipulate that individuals who committed offences while below the age of 18 should be spared from the death penalty.

In its statement, Amnesty International said, “So far this year,
Iran has executed at least four persons for crimes committed when they were children including one who is still a child. Amnesty International has recorded 42 executions so far in 2005, but the true number could well be higher”.

19 July 2005, an 18-year-old, identified only as A. M. and a minor, Mahmoud A, were publicly hanged in the north-eastern city of Mashhad. According to reports, they were convicted of sexual assault on a 13-year-old boy and had been detained 14 months ago. Prior to their execution, the two were also given 228 lashes each for drinking, disturbing the peace and theft”, Amnesty International stated.

“Prior to this, on
13 July 2005, Ali Safarpour Rajabi, aged 20, was hanged for killing Hamid Enshadi, a police officer in Poldokhtar. Amnesty International recorded his death sentence as having been passed in February 2002, when he was 17 years old, and believes his crime may have been committed when he was only 16 years old”, the rights group added.

Iran’s Islamic law permits boys above the age of 15 and girls above the age of nine to receive the capital punishment.

In January 2005, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child urged Iran "to suspend immediately the imposition and execution of all forms of torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, such as amputation, flogging or stoning, for crimes committed by persons under 18".