Jewish Iranian sentenced to death for murder gets last-minute reprieve

Jewish Iranian sentenced to death for murder gets last-minute reprieve
Jewish Iranian sentenced to death for murder gets last-minute reprieve

Arvin Nathaniel Ghahremani, 20, an Iranian Jew whose execution continues to be postponed. © Credit: Iran Human Rights

Arvin Nathaniel Ghahremani acted in self-defense when he killed Amir Shokri during a scuffle; international human rights groups working to commute his sentence

He was to be executed for killing a man during a brawl two years ago. He benefited from a last-minute reprieve on Sunday, postponing his execution by a month.

Arvin Nathaniel Ghahremani, 20, was sentenced to death and was to be executed under Iran’s penal code of “restorative justice” – or “qisas” in Arabic. He is accused of killing a man named Amir Shokri in self-defense when he was attacked with a knife two years ago, the Iran International news site, linked to the opposition, said last week.

At the last minute, he was granted a stay of execution despite considerable efforts by his family and international human rights organizations to have his sentence commuted instead, Ynet reported, citing sources. anonymous sources within the Iranian Jewish community.

Under Iranian law, when a person is convicted of intentional homicide, the only way to commute the death sentence is for the deceased’s family to say they forgive the perpetrator.

According to Human Rights Watch (HRW), Iranian law states that if a non-Muslim kills a Muslim, the qisas can be applied and the perpetrator can be sentenced to death. However, if a Muslim kills a non-Muslim in Iran, the qisas does not apply and no punishment is imposed, leading human rights experts to say the law unfairly discriminates against minority groups in Iran.

Last week, the Oslo-based group Iran Human Rights (IHR) reported that Ghahremani’s family had been informed that they had until Monday to ask Shokri’s family to agree to renounce the execution and accept a large sum of money.

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The IHR released a voice recording of Ghahremani’s mother asking people to pray for her son to be saved.

According to Ynet, Iranian Jewish lawyers based in the United States also contributed to efforts to overturn Ghahremani’s execution, and a call for international intervention was sent to several countries, including Germany and Russia.

The reason for the last-minute postponement of Ghahremani’s execution was not made clear, and Ynet did not confirm whether Shokri’s family had agreed to commute his sentence.

A video posted on social media last week showed prayers being held for Ghahremani at the Rachel’s Tomb pilgrimage site in the central West Bank city of Bethlehem.

Before the Islamic Revolution of 1979, there were some 100,000 Jews in Iran; by 2016, according to an Iranian census, that number had fallen to fewer than 10,000.

Iran has openly sworn to the destruction of Israel and financially supports terrorist groups like the Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah and the Palestinian Hamas, also engaged in this path.

Prominent figures in Iran’s Jewish community intermittently issue anti-Israel statements that fit the regime’s agenda.

According to the IHR, Iran has carried out at least 223 executions this year, including at least 50 in the first half of May.

Amnesty International said last month that Iran had executed 853 people in 2023, the highest number since 2015.

Iranian authorities have “persisted in their state-sanctioned killing spree, which has turned prisons into battlefields,” Amnesty said.

Source: YOU




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