Aug 11, 2008

Balochistan: Iranian Government Executed Baluchi Human Right Activist

Sample ImageThe Iranian Minority Human Rights Group calls for action against arbitrary arrests, detention, and execution of Baluchi activists.
Below is an article published by Iranian Minority Human Rights Group:
The Iranian government has executed Mr Yaghub Mehrnahad, a 28 year old Baluchi journalist, human rights and cultural activist, who criticised the Iranian government's treatment of Baluchi people.  He executed along side another Baluchi man named Abdul Nasser.
A number of organisations, including Amnesty International, had called on the Iranian government to halt execution proceedings. IMHRO appealed on Yaghub Mehrnahad's behalf on the 11 February 2008.
Yaghub Mehrnahad was the founder of Anjoman Sedayeh edalat (the Voice of Justice Association), which was recognised and registered by the Iranian government. The Voice of Justice Association is an NGO that organises events such as music concerts and educational courses for young Baluchi.
In May 2007 Yaghub Mehrnahad and five other members of the Voice of Justice Association were kidnapped and detained by Iranian security forces. This style of arrest is commonly employed by Iranian security forces.
The other five detainees were released but Yaghub Mehrnahad remained in detention. He was subjected to torture for several months before being executed in early August 2008.
IMHRO condemns the execution of Yaghub Mehrnahad, and considers it to be an act of oppression against the Baluchi people and all minorities in Iran. We call upon the Iranian government to secure the immediate release of all Baluchi activists and to permit international NGOs such as Amnesty International to visit prisons in Baluchistan.
"The execution of Yaghub Mehrnahad is not the execution of only one person; it is an attempt to execute a nation. By executing Mehrnahad the Iranian Government showed that it is against any civil and peaceful movement. They just want to push and encourage Baluchi into armed conflict, the things which Baluchi should avoid it." IMHRO researcher Reza Washahi said.
According to amnesty report, in a meeting with his family Yaghub Mehrnahad said, "I am not guilty and this has happened unjustly and if I am executed, people will know that I have been executed without [having committed] a crime."[ii][2]
Appeal for immediate release of Ebrahim Mehrnahad
Ebrahim Mehrnahad, 16 years old, is the brother of Yaghub Mehrnahad. He was arrested in May 2007, and kept in solitary confinement for 72 days. They arrested him again in 2008.
He remains in detention. We call upon the world community to put pressure on the Iranian government to secure his immediate release.
Execution of Sunni Baluchi Clergy
In recent months the oppression of Sunni Baluchi has worsened. Some Sunni clergy have been executed without being give a fair trial or hearing.
Abdul Gurus Mula Zehi and Mohammad Yusuf Sohrabi were executed in Zahedan in April 2008. Both had made confessions whilst under torture. Shortly before the executions these forced confessions were broadcast on State TV. Broadcasting forced confessions is a common method of propaganda employed by Iranian intelligence services.
There are at least six million Baluchi indigenous people living in southeast Iran. Like other minorities in Iran, they are subjected to abuses of their social, economic and political rights, and suffer from various forms of discrimination.
They are often banned from speaking in their mother tongue. As result of a lack of state investment, the unemployment rate is high. Many villages do not have any access to clean drinking water. Hospital conditions are poor as a result of lack of investment. Baluchi civil leaders are often arrested on false charges such as drug smuggling.   
As Baluchi people are mainly Sunni, they also suffer from discrimination in job opportunities and education. The ideology of the theocratic government of Iran holds that all non-Shia are infidels.  
Please write, expressing your condemnation of the execution of 28 year old human rights activist Yaghub Mehrnahad, and requesting the immediate and unconditional release of 16 year old Ebrahim Mehrnahad, to:  
Secretary General United Nations
The Honourable Ban Ki-moon
United Nations Headquarters,
Room S-3800,
New York, NY 10017,
Supreme Leader of Iran
Sayyed Ali Khamenei
E-mail via web site
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Navanethem (Navi) Pillay
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights,
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10,
Head of the Judiciary
Ayatollah Mahmud Hashemi Shahroudi
Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh / Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Pasteur St, Vali Asr Ave
South of Serah-e Jomhouri,
Tehran 1316814737, Islamic Republic of Iran
Iranian President
Mahmud Ahmadinejad
E-mail via web site
European Parliament Human Rights Committee
Bureau d'Hélène Flautre au Parlement Européen,
8G130, rue Wierz,
B-1049, Bruxelles,