Iranian Kurdistan: Fate of Bodies of Executed Prisoners Still Unclear
A month after the execution in Tehran of five imprisoned activists, a lawyer involved in the case has told RFE/RL’s Radio Farda that he still does not know what has been done with their bodies.
Farzad Kamangar, Shirin Alam Hooli, Farhad Vakili, Ali Heydarian, and Mehdi Eslamian were hanged on May 9 at Tehran's Evin Prison for alleged links to terrorist groups. All but one were Kurdish activists.
On June 2, the governor of Iran's Kurdistan Province, Esmaeel Najar, told the families that the five bodies have been buried. The governor would not reveal the place of the burial for what he said were "security reasons."
But lawyer Khalil Bahramian, who represented Kurdish teacher Kamangar, told RFE/RL’s Radio Farda it is still not clear if the authorities have actually buried the bodies.
"If they have buried them, why didn't they inform us earlier?" Bahramian said. "If they haven't, why are they still keeping them?"
Despite continual requests, the authorities had previously refused to hand over the bodies of the executed prisoners to their families.
Bahramian said that denying parents access to their children's bodies is inhuman.
"Now that they have killed their children, why don't they give their bodies to their families?" Bahramian asked.
Bahramian said the execution of the five prisoners violated the law. He also complained about the secrecy in the handling of the case.
He said the authorities had not notified the families about the executions beforehand, nor did they inform them that they were going to bury the bodies.