With the official start of the new year (Nowroz) in Iran, the Iran Human Rights Organization has released a report on the executions carried out by the Islamic Republic. According to the report, the rate of executions in the past year has increased by 43%. Among these executed individuals, two people have been executed for the first time in the past 9 years on charges of insulting Islamic sanctities.
Yousef Mehrad and Sadrallah Fazeli Zarei had a channel on the social media platform Telegram called “Critique of Superstition and Religion” and were detained for this reason. Yousef Mehrad, a father of three children, was facing charges of insulting the leader of the Islamic Republic and anti-government propaganda. These two individuals were executed in the city of Arak in May 2023. The report also states that 5 other individuals have been sentenced to death on the same charges, but their names have not been disclosed.
In the past few days, news of the issuance of a death sentence in public for Shahriar Bayat, a 64-year-old Iranian man, by Tehran Court No. 13 has been published by the media. Bayat was arrested during the Woman, Life, Freedom revolution. The Islamic Court has sentenced him to public execution based on the contents and posts published on him social media, which included “insults to the Prophet of Islam, insults to the first Imam of Shiism, and insults to the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
Two of the judges in the case have sentenced him to death, while one judge has sentenced him to long-term imprisonment. Given the execution of two individuals last year on charges of insulting Islamic sanctities in the Islamic Republic, there is serious concern about his execution.
Council of Ex-Muslim of Britain (CEMB) is outraged over the alarming increase in executions and violence against opponents after the Woman, Life, Freedom revolution. The regime must be accountable for killing atheists and blasphemers.
We urge the public and rights organisations to step up pressure against this regime to prevent the execution of Shahriar Bayat for his conscience and expression. Execution is state-sponsored murder and must be stopped.