Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Court declared The activist HRANA news agency reports that a protester accused of apostasy and insulting the Quran has died.
Defendant Javad Ruhi, 35, was reportedly arrested on December 11 for participating in ongoing nationwide protests in the northern Iranian city of Nowshahr.
Ruhi was also accused of “burning and destroying public property” and “inciting public unrest and conspiring to commit crimes against national security,” the Mazandaran Justice Department’s communications department said. rice field.
Mazandaran’s chief justice, Mohammad Sadeg Akbari, said Ruhi had not hired a lawyer and that a public defender had been appointed for him by the court.
But civic activists and sources close to Ruhi’s family denied the allegations, saying he was not allowed to have a lawyer during the interrogation.
HRANA said his confession was “coerced”, according to sources close to Ruhi’s family.
Iranian authorities have been accused of torturing and coercing false confessions from many former prisoners.
Sources close to Ruhi’s family say the only document leading to a death sentence in the case was a coerced confession.
The court also noted a video of a person lighting a Quran.
However, the source said, “Although the video does not clearly show the face of the person who set the book on fire, the court has identified it as Javad Ruhi.”
The same court recently sentenced Mehdi Mohammadifard and Arshia Takdastan, two teenagers arrested during demonstrations, to death.
Officials said Mohammadifard and Taqdastan’s actions constituted “corruption on earth.” The accusation is often leveled in cases allegedly involving espionage or attempts to overthrow the government, and in recent months the court has seen protesters angered by the death in custody of student Masa Amini. used against Suspicion of September dress code violations.
Iranians have flooded the streets across the country in protest after Amini’s death, with women and even schoolgirls in unprecedented defiance of what they see as the greatest threat to the Islamic government since the 1979 revolution. shows the attitude of
The government’s brutal crackdown on civil demonstrators and dissent has resulted in the arrest of thousands, including journalists, lawyers, activists and digital rights advocates, among others who speak out against the government.
Some lawmakers have demanded heavy penalties, including death sentences, for protesters and called for a tougher response.
Four of the convicted protesters, including two over the weekend, have already been executed, and two others, Mohammad Ghobador and Mohammad Broghani, have had their sentences upheld by the country’s Supreme Court.
The regime holds Western governments responsible for the unrest.
In addition to the arrests, human rights groups say the crackdown has killed nearly 500 people and injured hundreds more.
rights group express concern Jamshid Sharmad, who holds dual Iranian-German citizenship, could be sentenced to death.