The death sentence of three Baluch political prisoners in southeastern Iran was carried out Sunday morning in Zahedan Prison.
The men were identified as 28-year-old Hassan Dehvari, 21-year-old Elias Qalandarzehi, and Omid Mahmoudzehi.
The three were transferred to solitary confinement in Zahedan Prison on January 1 to await their death sentence, according to the Baloch Campaign website.
The state-run news agency Tasnim reported their deaths as “the execution of terrorist bombers and an armed insurgent”.
The Sistan and Baluchestan Judiciary charged the Baluch political prisoners with “armed measures against the police and collaboration with an armed dissident group”.
However, the Baloch Campaign, a human rights group based in the US said Dehvari and Qalandarzehi were detained because their families are members of dissident groups.
“Hassan and Elias were arrested only to put pressure on their relatives who are working against the regime. Hassan’s brother, as well as Elias’ four uncles, are members of an anti-government organization. The purpose of detaining these people is to force those relatives who are involved in the armed struggle to return to the country,” an informed source told HRANA, another human rights group.
According to Mohammadreza Faqihi, lawyer to Hassan and Elias, he had requested an appeal to the Supreme Court and the case was pending review.
Their lawyer had told the state affiliated Telegram channel Emtedad that their sentence should be postponed until the end of the retrial.
“After carefully studying their case in the Revolutionary Court of Zahedan, we found flaws in the judicial procedure. Therefore, the verdict issued for them is similarly flawed,” Faqihi said.
3 brutally tortured Baluch political prisoners were hanged at dawn in Zahedan Prison, SE #Iran. The 2 on the right are Hassan Dehvari & Elias Qalandarzehi, both fathers, who were hanged because their families are members of dissident groups. Omid Mahmoudzehi was also hanged today pic.twitter.com/GB6RuEszOV— Iran News Wire (@IranNW) January 3, 2021
Hassan Dehvari and Elias Qalandarzehi were arrested in April 2014 by Sistan and Baluchestan intelligence agents. Hassan Dehvari, 28, was the father of five children, while 21-year-old Elias Qalandarzehi was the father of a girl. They were both brutally tortured and kept in solitary confinement for 112 days. Their death sentence was based on forced confessions under torture.
According to reports, the men were flogged and electrocuted with an iron cap on their heads. Their fingernails and toenails were also pulled out while their wives were detained and threatened with rape in front of a camera among other forms of torture.
Omid Mahmoudzehi was accused of “participation in kidnapping and murder”, but no other information about this prisoner has been reported by independent sources.
Before this, another Baluch political prisoner was hanged in December 2020. Abdolhamid Mirbaluch Zehi, 30 was hanged on December 26. His sentence was carried out even though his lawyer said he was waiting for an appeal of the death sentence. He was also tortured and had denied the charges brought against him.
The regime systematically tortures prisoners for coerced confessions. In a September 2 report, Amnesty International shed light on the widespread use of torture including beatings, floggings, electric shocks, stress positions, mock executions, waterboarding, sexual violence, forced administration of chemical substances, and deprivation of medical care against protesters detained during the last round of protests in November 2019.
According to international organizations, Iran ranks first in the world in terms of executions per capita. According to human rights groups, over 72% of the executions in Iran are not reported by the state or judiciary organizations and are secretly carried out.