Iran- Human Rights (Women, Minorities, Ethnics)
Iran Human Rights (May 3 2016): On Sunday May 1, one prisoner was reportedly hanged at Nahavand Prison (in the western province of Hamadan) and two prisoners were reportedly hanged at Mashhad Central Prison (in the northeastern province of Razavi Khorasan).
According to a report by the Judiciary in Hamadan, the prisoner hanged at Nahavand was executed on murder charges. The report identifies the prisoner only by the initials, M.R.
The state-run news site, Rokna, reported on the executions of the two unrelated prisoners in Mashhad, but did not publish their names or initials. According to the report, one of the prisoners was hanged on murder charges while the other was a 25-year-old hanged on rape charges.
The photo in this report is of the prisoner who was executed in Mashhad on murder charges.
London, 17 Apr – Three women were executed last week in Iran, all on the same day, just as European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini was about to lead a trade delegation to Tehran.
According to reports received from Iran, a woman was sent to the gallows in Kashmar, north-eastern Iran, on Thursday, 14 April. Ameneh Rezaiyan, 43, from Taybad in eastern Iran, was sentenced to death two years ago.
Another two women are also believed to have been among a group of seven prisoners who were hanged collectively in a prison in Birjand, north-east Iran, on Thursday.
According to reports from Iran, 27 Sunni political prisoners in Gohardasht Prison are facing imminent execution.
The reports indicate that on April 30, Shojaei, the head of Ward 4 of Gohardasht, went to Hall 10 of this ward where Sunni prisoners are kept and announced that the death sentences of all 27 have been approved and have been sent to the implementation office, markedly increasing the chance of their execution.
These Sunni prisoners have been condemned to death by the judiciary on the charge of Moharebeh (enmity with God).
Most of these prisoners were arrested in the years 2009 to 2011 in Kurdistan (western Iran) by the intelligence agents. They were kept in solitary confinement under physical and psychological tortures for several months prior to their trail with no lawyers or contacts with their families. They have been arrested solely on the grounds of their beliefs.
Iran- Terrorism Activities (Middle-East)
The chief of staff of the Iranian military, Maj. Gen. Hassan Firouzabadi, arrived in Damascus on April 30 to assume direct command of the Iranian, Syrian and Hizballah forces fighting in Syria, debkafile’s military and intelligence sources report. His arrival showed Iran has significantly stepped up its military involvement in Syria.
Sources close to Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said May 1 in Tehran that the general arrived in Damascus “to personally supervise the battles and the borders that were determined.” The sources did not specify which battles he would command or who had set the borders. They also did not say whether the borders referred to those of the war raging in Syria, or the country’s sovereign borders.
The Iranian government is broadcasting a music video made by the Basij militia recruiting children to fight in Syria’s civil war. The original is in Persian (Farsi), but the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) translated some of the lyrics.”On my leader [Ayatollah Khamenei’s] orders I am ready to give my life.
The goal is not just to free Iraq and Syria; My path is through the sacred shrine [in Syria], but my goal is to reach Jerusalem.
TEHRAN, Iran-Iranian moderates and reformists who support President Hassan Rouhani and last year’s landmark nuclear deal have failed to secure a majority after parliamentary runoff elections but will retain the most seats in the assembly.
State TV announced the results for all of the contested seats on Saturday, the day after the runoff was held.
Moderates or reformists won 37 seats. The bloc needed to win 40 for an outright majority in the 290-seat chamber.
The moderates and reformists will have 143 seats in the assembly, making them the largest bloc, followed by hard-liners and independents.
Iran- Nuclear Activities
Sens. Rubio and Kirk: If Iran wants access to the dollar it must clean up its act
Last year, as the Obama administration urged support for the flawed Iran nuclear deal, it repeatedly claimed the deal would not undermine America’s broader efforts to halt Iran’s destructive behavior in the Middle East and beyond.
“We harbor no illusions about the Iranian government’s nefarious activities beyond its nuclear program,” Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew wrote in July 2015. “Make no mistake: we will continue to impose and aggressively enforce sanctions to combat Iran’s support for terrorist groups, its fomenting of violence in the region, and its perpetration of human rights abuses.”
US electronic commerce company Amazon says it will suspend the accounts of several Iranians who shopped on its website.
According to the company, Iranian officials had bought products worth approximately $110,000 in total on Amazon over the past three years.
The products they purchased range from books and music to apparel, as well as automotive parts, the company said.
Amazon claimed that the accounts that made those purchases were subject to sanctions prohibiting economic activities between the US and Iran, and it will no longer sell to them.
Parastou Foruhar, daughter of Dariush and Parvaneh Foruhar, cried when she found the name of Ayatollah Omid Najaf Abadi on the list of “Reformists” running for election to the Council of Experts in Iran in March 2016. The judge had ordered the assassination of her parents, who were major opponents of the regime and brutally murdered in their home in 1998, as well as four other Iranian writers and political activists who were critical of dictatorship. Foruhar was even more shocked when she realized that many people who had been trying to bring Najaf Abadi to court had voted for him in the election.
Najaf Abadi is not alone on the list of candidates which the Reformists called the ‘List of Hope’. On this list were many other “hanging judges”, like Ayatollah Reyshahri the first head of Vavak (Iran’s intelligence ministry). He executed many Iranian air force pilots, officers as well as Iran’s Foreign Minister in 1980, Sadegh Ghotbzadeh, and Seyed Mehdi Hashemi, who played a leading role exposing the secret relationship between Khomeini’s regime and the Reagan administration, which came to be known as Iran-Gate or the Iran-Contra Affair. Other “hanging judges” on the “List of Hope” included Mohseni Ejei, Ali Razini and Seyed Ebrahim Reisi, who was a judge presiding in 1988 when roughly 5000 prisoners who were already serving sentences were executed in three days.
Iran’s outgoing parliament approved a motion Sunday to increase the capabilities of the country’s ballistic missiles, a military programme that has been ruled dangerous by the United Nations.
Tehran considers the missile programme an essential deterrent, citing the unprovoked attacks on its cities by former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in the nations’ 1980-1988 war.
However, the United States and other Western countries has said the Islamic republic’s missiles threaten the Middle East, particularly Israel. Tehran’s clerical rulers do not recognise the Jewish state.
The motion was passed by the lame duck conservative-dominated parliament one day after election results showed that reformists had beaten them in polls.
Lawmakers said measures must be taken “to develop and increase ballistic missile capability” and “short, medium and long range anti-aircraft capabilities.”