URGENT: 7th child offender in a month facing imminent execution


On the last days of 2007 , Stop Child Executions Campaign was informed of yet another imminent child execution in Iran (7th in the month of December!) . Iranian children rights attorney Mohammad Mostafaei sent SCE a copy of his letter to Iran’s head of Judiciary, Ayatollah Shahrudi, in which he detailed the case of Saeed Jazee, who is accused of murder at the age of 17. The alleged victim was 5 years older than him at the time. 

Saeed Jazee has been imprisoned since the age of 17 and now at the age of 21 is facing execution. His death by hanging has already been approved by Iran’s superior court and is now sent to Ayatollah Shahrudi for final approval.

Saeed’s attorney in the letter to Shahrudi explained that Saeed who is a sculpturing artist went to the sandwich shop of his close friend to eat while his family were on vacation. He picked a sandwich and started eating and the new employee, who did not know Saeed started arguing, took the kitchen knife and attacked Saeed . Saeed resisted and the knife fell and Saeed in order to scare and stop the employee picked up the knife but the employee charged towards him while Saeed was holding the knife. After being injured , Saeed tried to help and even other employees who had seen the incident hid the knife since they felt that Saeed was not at fault. Saeed’s attorney thinks that the alleged victim was the cause of his own death and he suspects that he may have been under a drug or alcohol influence and states that the body should have been tested for drugs.

Mostafaei states that Saeed did not know the victim and the murder was not premeditated and the kitchen knifewas taken by the victim who had access to the kitchen area. Mostafaei has asked for a retrial of the case.


The legal proceedings in Saeed Jazee case, like those of other child offenders facing the death penalty, may have been flawed. SCE Campaign is concerned about the use of evidence in these cases, including that of expert witnesses, where relevant, in trials, and relevant circumstantial evidences. Although
SCE campaign acknowledges the right and responsibility of governments to bring to justice those children suspected of criminal offences, but unconditionally opposes their death penalty as the International law strictly prohibits the use of the death penalty against people convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18.

As a state party to both the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), Iran has undertaken not to execute child offenders. However, since 1990, the ruling Islamic regime in Iran has executed at least 30 child offenders, including more than 6 so far this year. 82 child offenders are now recorded by SCE to be on death row in Iran. This number may be even higher as according to reports, at least a further 15 Afghan child offenders may be under sentence of death. According to the recent statistics provided by an Iranian police official about 170 children can be facing execution in Iran. There has been a surge in processing the children’s file for execution and this is the SEVENTH URGENT CALL IN ONE MONTH that Stop Child Executions Campaign had to issue, the other six being for Ali Mahin-Torabi, Mohammad Latif, Delara DarabiHossein HaghiBehnood and Ali.  

Iran executed a 20 year old boy, Makwan Moloudzadeh, earlier this month for alleged homosexuality at the age of 13. Four child offenders have been executed since October 2007: Babak Rahimi (17), Hossein Gharabaghloo (16), Mohammadreza Tork (15) Makwan Moloudzadeh (13).* [* The numbers in the ( ) indicate the age when they allegedly committed the crime for what they were executed.]

RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as possible, in Persian, Arabic, English, French or your own language:


– Call on the Iranian authorities to immediately halt the execution of Saeed Jazee.
– Express concern that Saeed Jazee was sentenced to death for a crime committed when he was under 18;
- Calling for the death sentence against Hossein to be commuted;
– Remind the authorities that Iran is a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which prohibit the use of the death penalty against people convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18, and that the execution of Saeed Jazee would therefore be a violation of international law;
– Urging the authorities to pass legislation to abolish the death penalty for offences committed by anyone under the age of 18, so as to bring Iran’s domestic law into line with its obligations under international law;
– Stating that you acknowledge the right and responsibility of governments to bring to justice those children suspected of criminal offences, but unconditionally opposes their death penalty.

APPEALS TO:
Head of the Judiciary
His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Ministry of Justice, Panzdah Khordad (Ark) Square,
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Salutation: Your Excellency
Email: info@dadgostary-tehran.ir (In the subject line: FAO Ayatollah Shahroudi)
Fax: +98 21 3390 4986 (please keep trying, if the called is answered, say “fax please”)

Leader of the Islamic Republic
His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei, The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street – Shahid Keshvar Doust Street
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: info@leader.ir
Salutation: Your Excellency

COPIES TO:
Director, Human Rights Headquarters of Iran
His Excellency Mohammad Javad Larijani
C/o Office of the Deputy for International Affairs
Ministry of Justice,
Ministry of Justice Building, Panzdah-Khordad (Ark) Square,
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: + 98 21 5 537 8827 (please keep trying)

and to diplomatic representatives of Iran accredited to your country.

PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY.

for more information about how to help visit: http://www.stopchildexecutions.com/how-you-can-help.aspx