A young man is still threatened with execution in Iran despite his accusation that he committed a crime when he was a minor.
Iran has postponed the execution of a young man convicted of murder when he was 17, but he is still at risk of being executed by hanging, according to Amnesty International and other human rights groups.
It is noteworthy that Arman Abdul Ali, now 25, was sentenced to death after a trial described by human rights groups as “unfair”. However, setting a date for the execution of his sentence has renewed international criticism against Iran for its use of the death penalty.
Abdul Ali was transferred to solitary confinement in Rajai Shahr Prison in Karaj, west of Tehran, in preparation for his execution on Wednesday, after he met his parents on Tuesday for the last time to bid them farewell. However, the ruling was not implemented, according to Amnesty International and the Iranian human rights organization, which is based in Oslo, with continuing fears that it may be carried out on Saturday.
imminent execution risk
Amnesty also said on Twitter on Wednesday evening, “The execution has been postponed until Saturday 16 October, but he is still at risk of imminent execution in Iran. He was only 17 years old when he was arrested.”
For its part, the Iranian Human Rights Organization, which monitors the use of the death penalty in Iran, said that Abdul Ali is still being held in solitary confinement, and quoted sources as saying that the execution may be carried out on Saturday.
Confessions under torture
Amnesty stated that Abdel Ali was sentenced to death in December 2015 after being convicted of murder following the disappearance of his girlfriend the previous year, but in an “unfair trial” and before a court “which relied on confessions extracted under torture”.
The human rights organization also revealed that Abd al-Ali confessed to the killing after his arrest, but that the body was not found, and he later retracted his confession.
In turn, rights groups say that international treaties signed by Iran prohibit it from executing anyone for a crime committed when they were under 18 years old.
64 youths executed for 10 years
Referring to international concern over the case, German Commissioner for Human Rights Bayerbel Köffler made it clear that the execution of the sentence was an “unacceptable violation of international law.” And it added in a statement issued by the German Foreign Ministry: “Arman Abd al-Ali was a minor at the time of the alleged crime. There is credible evidence that his confessions were extracted under torture, and his conviction therefore contradicts the basic principles of the rule of law.”
In addition, the Iranian Human Rights Organization has counted at least 64 adolescents executed in Iran during the past ten years, at least 4 of them in 2020.