West Balochistan: Fear Rising Over Iranian Government-ordered Executions.
On the 25 October 2013, Zahedan’s public persecutor announced that he ordered the execution of 16 Baloch political prisoners after an encounter between Mersad, a paramilitary group and another armed group. In this encounter 17 border security forces were killed according to government news agencies.
Below is a press release to be published on Balochistan People’s Party website:
On the 25th of October  Zahedan’s public persecutor announced that he ordered the execution of 16 Baloch political prisoners after an encounter between Mersad, a paramilitary group and another armed group. In this encounter 17 border security forces were killed according to government news agencies.
In a revenge act, the regime executed 16 Baloch political prisoners in Zahedan prison. Public persecutor Mohammad Marziyeh announced that 16 prisoner had been executed in response to clashes between the border forces and armed groups. Mr. Marziyeh, emphasized that in coming days more people would be executed.
This kind of method of revenge killing has always been used by the Iranian government in response to clashes with armed forces.
In May 2010, after an explosion near a Mosque, three people were executed the next morning in Zahedan prison. The following is a quote from the BBC's Persian language service: "Iranian Official News Agency (IRNA) has quoted a judge, whose name has not been disclosed, saying that the executed were not involved directly in the explosion but they had been arrested two days before the explosion occurred. However, the accused were interrogated and tried the night between the 30 and 31 of May, and were executed immediately after being charged for facilitating the explosion ".
After the presidential election in June 2009 and the subsequent arrests of hundreds of demonstrators, it was feared that demonstrators would be executed immediately, to intimidate and terrorize people so they would not take part in demonstrations. The regime felt that the arresting and killing of people in Tehran would spark a domestic and international outcry. In contrast, the execution of the Baloch which is not even mentioned in the international media, would fulfil the purpose to terrorize and prevent people in other parts of the country from joining protests against the regime.
To terrorize demonstrators in Tehran, 19 Baloch prisoners were executed in Zahedan following short trials in closed courts without access to defence lawyers,, they were convicted amongst others, of crimes such as "Moharabeh" and of "enmity against God". IRNA quoted Ebrahim Hamidi, Chief Justice of Sistan and Balochistan, saying that 13 people were on trial, charged for drug smuggling, hostage taking and rebellion against the government .
The change of president in Iran has not led to any change in reality on the ground for people in Balochistan, extra judicial killings, executions and arrests have continued. Yet in the recent months, security forces have started using the method of “enforced disappearance” more extensively, some people that have disappeared , their mutilated bodies have been found showing signs of severe torture.
The regime’s death squad abroad has also become more active since the new president came to power. Three Baloch political activists living in exile in Pakistan were recently assassinated by the Iranian regime’s death squad.
The death penalty continues to be applied in political cases, where individuals are commonly accused of “enmity against God”. In August 2007, Amnesty International noted that a disproportionately large number of executions in Iran that year were of Baloch citizens (50 out of 166).
According to Amnesty, the Iranian government: “was increasingly using the death penalty as a way of stemming unrest in areas with large ethnic minorities. In recent years, bomb attacks in the predominantly Arab province of Khuzestan and ethnic Baloch areas of Sistan-Baluchistan province were followed by a wave of often public executions. Some of the condemned men were shown on state television making "confessions" that are believed to have been extracted from them under torture or other duress.”
Photo @flickr by Beluchistan