Sunday, 30 October 2011

IMHRO: Four Ahwazi Arab arrested for converting to Christianity

Iranian Minorities’ Human Rights Organisation (IMHRO)


IMHRO sources from al- Ahwaz in south west of Iran reported that four Ahwazi Arabs men arrested by Iranian security service because they converted from Islam to Christianity. They all reported below 30 years old. Ali Jabber, Karim Naderi, Rahim Asakerh and Rahman Jafari all arrested while worshiping secretly in the house in city of Ahwaz.

After they arrested, security services raided their houses in city of Ahwaz, looking for Bible and Christian literature.

IMHRO condemns the persecution of Muslims who converts into Christianity in Iran. Iran should respect freedom of religions, including conversion from Islam to other religions.

Iranian security service monitors Christians in Iran. Christian Worship is banned, churches destroyed and those who converted from Islam to Christianity charged with apostasy and would face the death penalty.  Many Christians in last thirty years tortured and murdered by Iranian security service, there is no freedom of religion in Iran and Christians like Baha’i, Sunni and Sufi dervishes are heavily persecuted. 

Underground church is wide spread in Iran, as people are fed up with Islamic theocracy in Iran. It is estimated that in last 10 years thousands had converted to Christianity in Iran.

Iranian Kurds at risk of imminent execution

UA: 307/11 Index: MDE 13/094/2011 Iran Date: 19 October 2011 Date: 19 October 2011
iranian kurds at risk of imminent execution
The death sentence s against Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi, two members of Iran’s Kurdish minority have been up held by the Supreme Court . They could now be executed at any time.
Zaniar (or Zanyar) Moradi and Loghman (or Loqman) Moradi were sentenced to public hanging on 22 
December 2010 by Branch 15 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court. They have been convicted of “enmity against God” (moharebeh) and “corruption on earth” for allegedly murdering the son of a senior cleric in Marivan, Kordestan province, north-eastern Iran, on 4 July 2009. They have also been convicted of participating in armed activities with Komala, a Kurdish opposition group. The trial reportedly lasted 20 minutes but the two men appealed the sentences. A 12 October 2011report stated that the Supreme Court had upheld the verdicts. According to information, Loghman and Zaniar Moradi have been verbally notified of the Supreme Court’s decision. Amnesty International is investigating reports suggesting that Zaniar Moradi was 17 at the time of his arrest.

Zaniar Moradi and Loghman Moradi were arrested respectively on 1 August 2009 and 17 October 2009 in Marivan. They were held by the Ministry of Intelligence for the first nine months of their detention, when no charges of murder were brought against them. They were moved several times between detention facilities and, at or around the beginning of December 2010, were finally transferred to Section 4 of Raja’i Shahr Prison in Karaj, northwest of Tehran. Loghman and Zaniar Moradi then wrote a letter in which they stated that during their interrogation session by the Ministry of Intelligence they were forced to “confess” to the allegations of murder after being tortured for a period of 25 days and threatened with rape. Both men were denied access to adequate medical treatment.
PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in Persian, English or your own language :
Urging the Iranian authorities not to carry out the executions of Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi;
Calling on them to commute the death sentences of Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi and anyone else on death row, including other Kurdish political prisoners;
Expressing concern that neither Loghman Moradi nor Zaniar Moradi had a fair trial, and urging the Iranian authorities to investigate the allegations that they were tortured and to bring to justice anyone found responsible for abuses and to disregard as evidence in courts “confessions” which may have been coerced.
Leader of the Islamic Republic
Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street – End of Shahid Keshvar Doust Street, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Twitter: "Call on #Iran leader @khamenei_ir to halt the execution of Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi” Salutation: Your Excellency
Head of the Judiciary
Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani
[care of] Public relations Office
Number 4, 2 Azizi Street
Vali Asr Ave., above Pasteur Street intersection
Islamic Republic of Iran Email: (In subject line: FAO Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani)
Salutation: Your Excellency
And copies to:
Secretary General, High Council for Human Rights
Mohammad Javad Larijani
High Council for Human Rights
[Care of] Office of the Head of the Judiciary, Pasteur St., Vali Asr Ave. south of Serah-e Jomhouri, Tehran 1316814737, Islamic Republic of Iran
(subject line: FAO Mohammad Javad Larijani)
Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country.
Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.
iranian kurds at risk of imminent execution

ADditional Information

Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi’s letter from prison also stated that during interrogations by the Ministry of Intelligence, Zaniar Moradi was repeatedly asked about his father, Eghbal Moradi, who lives in Iraq’s Kurdistan province. The letter further describes that Zaniar Moradi was tied to a bed, lashed and subsequently threatened with rape prior to his “confession”.
Kurds, who are one of Iran’s many minorities, live mainly in the west and north-west of the country, in the province of Kordestan and neighbouring provinces bordering Kurdish areas of Turkey and Iraq. They experience discrimination in the enjoyment of their religious, economic and cultural rights (see: Iran: Human rights abuses against the Kurdish minority, (Index: MDE 13/088/2008), 30 July 2008 available at: For many years, Kurdish organizations such as the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI) and the Marxist group Komala conducted armed struggle against the Islamic Republic of Iran, although neither currently does so. The Party For Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), was formed in 2004, and carried out armed attacks against Iranian security forces, but declared a unilateral ceasefire in 2009, although it still engages in armed clashes with security forces in what it terms “self-defence”. Since April 2011 there has been an escalation of clashes between Kurdish armed groups and the security forces. From August until the first week of October 2011, the Iranian and Turkish governments shelled border areas where armed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and PJAK bases were thought to be located. In the first week of September, Iran reportedly rejected a full ceasefire request by PJAK.
Amnesty International condemns without reservation attacks on civilians, which includes judges, clerics, and locally or nationally-elected officials, as attacking civilians violates fundamental principles of international humanitarian law. These principles prohibit absolutely attacks on civilians as well as indiscriminate and disproportionate attacks. Such attacks cannot be justified under any circumstances.
At least 13 other Kurdish men and one Kurdish woman are believed to be on death row in connection with their alleged membership of and activities for proscribed Kurdish organizations. Some have had initial prison sentences increased to death sentences. At least 10 Kurds have reportedly been executed for political offences in recent years.
Since 1990, Iran is believed to have executed at least 51 people convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18 years old. Up to four of these executions were in 2011. For example, 17-year-old Alireza Molla-Soltani was publicly hanged in the city of Karaj, near Tehran on 21 September 2011 (See: Iran executes teenager accused of killing “Iran’s strongest man” , 21 September 2011, Amnesty International has compiled a list of more than 144 juvenile offenders on death row in Iran, although it has proved difficult to monitor their subsequent fate in all cases.
The execution of juvenile offenders is prohibited under international law, including Article 6(5) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), to which Iran is a state party. In Iran a person convicted of murder has no right to seek pardon or commutation from the state, in violation of Article 6(4) of the ICCPR. The family of a murder victim have the right either to insist on execution, or to pardon the killer and receive financial compensation (diyeh). For more information about executions of juveniles in Iran, please see Iran: The last executioner of children (MDE 13/059/2007),
Name: Loghman Moradi and Zaniar Moradi
Gender m/f: m
UA: 307/11 Index: MDE 13/094/2011 Issue Date: 19 October 2011

Friday, 21 October 2011

UN: the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights: The situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

The situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic
of Iran

Note by the Secretary-General

The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit to the members of the
General Assembly the report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human
rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ahmed Shaheed, submitted in accordance with
Human Rights Council resolution 16/9.

The Special Rapporteur officially assumed responsibility for the mandate on
1 August 2011 and has since notified the Secretariat that, owing to his late
appointment, he would not be in a position to present a substantive report, but would
focus instead on presenting his proposed methodology and cataloguing the most
recent trends in the human rights situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran.
This would emphasize the need for greater transparency and cooperation from
the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Religious and ethnic minorities

59. The Special Rapporteur is also concerned by reports of targeted violence and
discrimination against minority groups. Members of recognized and unrecognized
religious and ethnic minorities such Arabs, Azeris, Balochs, Kurds, Nematullahi
Sufi Muslims, Sunnis, Baha’is and Christians are reportedly facing a wide range of
human and civil rights violations. These include encroachment on their rights to
freedom of assembly, association, expression, movement and liberty.

60. The Special Rapporteur is concerned about reports of violations against the
Baha’i community, which, despite being the largest non-Muslim religious minority,
does not enjoy recognition as such by the Government. Its members have
historically suffered multifaceted discrimination, including denial of jobs, pensions
and educational opportunities, as well as confiscation and destruction of property.
According to information received by the Special Rapporteur, at least 100 members
of the Baha’i community, including seven community leaders2 are currently

imprisoned in the Islamic Republic of Iran. The majority of those detained allegedly
face national security-related charges and have undergone judicial proceedings that
lacked due process and fair trial standards.

61. In addition, recognized religious minorities reportedly face serious constraints
in the enjoyment of their rights and are subjected to severe limitations and
restrictions on the freedom of religion and belief. For instance, the Special
Rapporteur notes that conversion from Islam is still punishable. Articles 13 and 26
of the Constitution recognize Christianity, granting Christians the right to worship
freely and to form religious societies. Article 14 obligates the Government to uphold
the equality and human rights of Christians. However, Christians in the Islamic
Republic of Iran are reportedly subjected to limitations on their freedom of religion
and various forms of religious discrimination. This is said to be particularly true of
Protestant Christians, most of whom are newly converted. The Intelligence Ministry
is reported to closely monitor Protestant congregations and to routinely summon or
detain members of Protestant groups for interrogations, during which individuals are
questioned about their beliefs, church activities and other church members and are
often urged to return to Islam. In this regard, some Protestants reported having been
threatened by intelligence officials with arrest and apostasy charges if they did not
return to Islam. This pattern of harassment has reportedly resulted in the operations
of most Protestant churches going underground, where church services and Bible
studies are conducted in private homes.

62. The Special Rapporteur was particularly disturbed by a recent ruling of the
Supreme Court that upheld a death sentence for Yousef Nadarkhani, a Protestant
pastor, who was reportedly born to Muslim parents but converted to Christianity
when he was 19 years old. The verdict reads that, unless he decides to renounce his
Christianity, Mr. Nadarkhani will be executed by hanging. This is an emblematic
case of religious intolerance and State-sanctioned violations of the right to freedom
of religion and belief, a fundamental freedom guaranteed by international
instruments. Behrouz Sadegh-Khanjani, pastor for the Church of Iran in the city of
Shiraz, was also detained, in June 2010, and was reportedly held incommunicado in
solitary confinement for approximately two months. Authorities originally charged
him with apostasy, but later dropped that charge and charged him with “blasphemy”
instead. He is currently awaiting trial under this charge.

63. Sufi Muslims in the Islamic Republic of Iran are also subjected to limitations
on their freedom of religion and various forms of religious discrimination. This is
particularly true of members of the Shia Sufi order, Nematollahi Gonabadi.

Authorities sentenced Gholam-Abbas Zare-Haqiqi, a Gonabadi leader, to four years
in prison in October 2009, for allowing a burial at Sufi cemeteries, a banned
practice. On 13 April 2011, authorities arrested eight Gonabadi dervishes by the
names of Abdolreza Kashani, Shokrollah Hosseini, Alireza Abbasi, Ali Kashanifar,
Mohammad Marvi, Nazarali Marvi, Ramin Soltankhah and Zafarali Moghimi. The
men had been part of a group of dervishes previously sentenced to five months in
prison, 50 lashes and one year’s exile on charges of “disrupting public order”,
mainly for assembling in front of the Gonabad Justice Department and prison to
protest the detainment of a leader of the order.

2 Fariba Kamalabadi, Jamaloddin Khanjani, Afif Naeimi, Saied Rezaie, Behrouz Tavakkoli, Vahid Tizfahm, and Mahvash Sabet are the seven members of the Baha’i faith who had been detained since 14 May 2008 and who went on trial on 12 January 2010 for charges including “acting against national security, espionage and spreading corruption on Earth. They have each been sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment.

Monday, 10 October 2011

IMHRO condemned arrest oh Ahwazi Arabs

Iranian Minorities’ Human Rights Organisation (IMHRO)


In recent weeks reports from inside of Ahwaz in the south west of Iran, indicates that pressure of the government has increased on Ahwazi activists. Iranian government continues to supress Arabs in Arabistan.

Ahwazi human right activist and some ordinary people charged with enmity against god and act against national security and condemned to death in secret trials without access to lawyers. Many of these activists are from Khalafieh (Khalaf Abad) in Arabistan. Jabar al-Bushuka 27 years old and his brother Mokhtar al-Bushuka 25 years old, Hadi Rashidi, Habib Allah Rashidi, Rahman Asakereh, Mohammad Ali Amori, Amir Amori, Hasham Shabani, Shahid Shabani, Ali Badri, Aqil, Aqili and Sayed Bagher al-Bushuka. They are reportedly subjected to torture.

More than 7000 workers, who strike in petrochemical complex of Razi in Bandar Mahshahr, subjected to persecution. IMHRO received list of following workers who arrested; Jasem Navaseri, Rahman Fazeli,Jamal Moghadam, Hasan Torfi, Saeid Hashemi, Naeem Chanani.

IMHRO is very concern regard of show trials of Iranian security service in Ahwaz and demands that this inhuman revolutionary court stops to function.

Lawyers had told IMHRO that judges in Ahwaz are handpicked by security services and charges and punishment arrive in “closed envelope” from security service office in Tehran.

IMHRO appeals to international community to follow up the case of persecution of Ahwazi Arabs.

Ahwazi Arabs under huge pressure by central governments since occupation of Arabistan by Reza shah in 1925. Many activists sentenced secretly and execution is widespread. Iranian government had banned journalists from access to regions. Political parties and media are banned and civil activist persecuted. Ahwazi Arabs are banned from education in their mother tongue in schools and wearing Arabic dress is considered a crime. Arabistan is having one of the largest natural gas and oil reserves in the world.

CFR: Death For The Crime Of Christianity In Iran?

Yousef Nadarkhani is a Muslim-born Christian pastor who faces a death sentence in Iran because he converted to Christianity. His case has aroused a wave of international condemnation, and that may be enough to save his life. He was sentenced to death, but higher authorities in Tehran appear to be backing away from that in the face of universal criticism. This may not, even so, be enough to save him from additional imprisonment. He has already been in jail for two years. The delay in execution could, in fact, reflect instead the time the ayatollahs are taking to pressure him to recant his faith and “return” to Islam.

The case is a reminder of the nature and practices of the Iranian regime. The main brunt of regime attacks has fallen on the Baha’i faith: just under one hundred Baha’i are in prison now in Iran for no other crime than their religious beliefs. The Baha’i community suffers from persecution reminiscent of the way Jews were treated in Nazi Germany: deprived of jobs, barred from schools, arrested for teaching their children in informal schools, jailed without cause, cemeteries desecrated, religious institutions shut down.

What to do about the vicious theocratic regime in Iran remains a central challenge for American foreign policy. All too often, “managing” relations with the regime is seen as our proper goal, just as “managing” the conflict with the Soviet Union was seen as the only sensible goal during the Cold War–until Ronald Reagan came along with the message that the end of that regime was our real objective. So it should be in the case of Iran.

The Council on Foreign Relations has just published a guide to thinking about Iran and policy toward Iran. It covers all the key issues and can be accessed by clicking on the image below.

RFE/RL: Azeri Activists Arrested In Iran Over Lake Protest

Several Azeri activists in Iran have been arrested after calling on people to participate in the latest protest over the drying up of Lake Orumieh, RFE/RL's Radio Farda reports.

The Association for the Defense of Azerbaijani Political Prisoners in Iran (ADAPP) said on September 14 that the activists were detained after distributing leaflets urging people to take part in a protest in the northwestern city of Ardebil on September 19.

ADAPP said that activists Abbas Lesani, Asgar Akbarzadeh, Moslem Akbarzadeh, Ebrahim Rashidi, Hassan Karimzadeh, Isa Azizi, Nosratollah Valizadeh, Rahim Gholami, Hamid Ghovati, Ali Kheirjou, Mehdi Osouli, Ali Babaie, and Babak Javanshir were among those taken into custody.

Akbarzadeh, who is also a student activist, was arrested by security forces on September 8, while Lesani, a civil activist and former political prisoner, was detained by security forces on September 9 without an arrest warrant.

Lake Orumieh, a salt lake located in Iran's East Azerbaijan and West Azerbaijan provinces, is drying up and turning into a salt marsh.

There have been repeated demonstrations by several thousand people in recent weeks in the two provinces against the increasing aridity of the lake.

Security forces used violence to disperse those protests and arrested dozens of participants.

Activists say that if the present process continues the lake could disappear completely within three years, leaving billions of tons of salt that will pose a health hazard to the local population and make parts of the region uninhabitable for the some 14 million people who live there.

Environmentalists believe the construction of hydroelectric dams on rivers that are tributaries of the lake is the primary cause of the reduction in its size.

Environmentalist Esmail Kahrom told Radio Farda recently that some 35 dams have been built on 21 rivers that feed Lake Orumieh, and 10 more are currently under construction.

"This means Lake Orumieh has been deprived of 5.5 billion cubic meters of water annually," Kahrom said.

Kahrom also mentioned evaporation, drought, and the construction of a highway which crosses Lake Orumieh as other contributing factors to the decrease in its water levels.