May 04, 2015

Iranian Kurdistan: Situation of Five Kurdish Activists on Death Row is Unknown

Found guilty on alleged charges of ‘enmity against Allah’ and ‘corruption on Earth’, six Kurdish activists, namely Saman Nasim, Habib Afshari, Ali Afshari, Sirwan Nazhavi, Ibrahim Isapour and Younus Aqaiyan who now have been imprisoned for four years, were all reportedly sentenced to death. However, the whereabouts of five of these activists are reportedly unknown to their families and relatives. Mr Saman Nasim, who was 17 at the time of his arrest, was executed in February 2015 by the Iranian authorities, despite several International pleas.

Below is an article by Rudaw

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Families of six Kurdish activists who were sentenced to death in Iran for alleged links to outlawed Kurdish parties say authorities have not provided them with details about the fate of their loved ones since the activists were found guilty in February on charges of “enmity against God” and “corruption on Earth.”

Saman Nasim, Habib and Ali Afshari, Sirwan Nazhawi, Ibrahim Isapour and Younus Aqaiyan were relocated from Urumiyeh State Prison in March where they had been in custody after they were jailed over four years ago. Authorities have refused to disclose where the prisoners have been taken.
“We should have been given at least a death certificate so that we can pronounce them dead,” said one of the family members who wished to remain anonymous. “Authorities have kept us in the dark and it’s painful.”

The family of activists Habib and Ali Afshari say intelligence officers in the city of Mahabad told them the two men had been hanged, but did not provide death certificates.

Relatives of Sirwan Nizhawi and Ibrahi Isapour told Rudaw they know the two have been relocated to Tabriz.
One of the convicted activists, Saman Nasim, was sentenced to death at the age of just 17 accused of being a member of a Kurdish organization. Nasim, now 22, told Amnesty International last year he had confessed under “prolonged torture.”