Iran: record executions and repression in the streets

Iranian authorities executed more than 500 death row inmates in 2022. There has been another 450 killed by security forces in response to street protests.

Iranian authorities executed more than 500 people who had received the death penalty in 2022, this is according to data released by the NGO Iran Human Rights (IHR). According to the NGO, this is the highest figure in five years.

These figures do not include data disclosed by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), which totals more than 450 murders committed by security forces on the streets of Iran since September, when protests erupted over the killing of young Mahsa Amini by the Morality Police after she was arrested on the grounds that she was not wearing the Islamic headscarf correctly.

This means we are talking about almost a thousand deaths as a result of repression in Iran this year alone.

According to Iranian law, the number of crimes subject to the death penalty is among the highest in the world, and includes adultery, sodomy, apostasy, drug use and moharebeh (waging war against God), a charge of very broad significance that the Islamic regime "uses at will to punish those it perceives as opponents of its radical ideology," recalls FDD. This was the case with the execution of Mohsen Sekari, the 23-year-old executed last week who is the first on the list of eleven protesters sentenced to death for participating in the protests over Amini's death. Just this Monday, Iran carried out the second execution linked to these protests.

Executions of political prisoners

As for executions, the NGO IHR reports that more than half of those executed in November were from the Baloch minority. Throughout the year, the Baloch account for approximately 30% of executions in Iran, despite the fact that this population makes up only 2% to 6% of the country's population.

IHR also denounced the executions of political prisoners for security-related crimes as a violation of international humanitarian law. The group mentioned in particular Hosein Ordujanzado, Shahin Imani Moah, Milad Ashrahan Atbatan and Manuchehr Bejandi, sentenced to death for collaborating with the Israeli Mossad, according to a statement carried by the official Iranian news agency Mizan.