Iran Human Rights (IHR); December 6, 2020: A young prisoner who had spent two years in the Yazd Juvenile Detention Centre after being arrested on murder charges, has been executed at Yazd Central Prison. IHR continues to investigate his age at the time of arrest.
According to Iran Human Rights, on the morning of Wednesday, December 2, a young man on death row was executed at Yazd Central Prison. His identity has been established as Abdullah Mohammadi.
Informed sources told IHR that Abdullah Mohammadi was arrested on murder charges in 2015 and had spent the initial two years in the Yazd Juvenile Detention Centre. It is therefore possible that he was under 18 years old at the time of the alleged murder. At the time of writing, IHR has been unable to obtain any document evidence confirming his age, but continues to investigate the matter.
Abdullah Mohammadi was previously transferred to solitary confinement in preparation for his execution two months ago. He was returned to his cell after he managed to buy time from the victim’s family, who had demanded one billion Tomans as diyya (blood money). While Abdullah’s family did their best to come up with the money in the two months that proceeded, they were unable to come up with the required amount and Abdullah was ultimately executed last Wednesday.
Iran is one of the few countries in the world that still carries out the death penalty for juvenile offenders. However, Article 91 of the new Islamic Penal Code, passed in 2013, grants judges the power to not issue death sentences to children who did not know and comprehend the nature of the crime or its sanctity.
According to Iran Human Rights’ annual report, in 2019, at least four children were executed in violation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which the Islamic Republic is a signatory to.
Given the security state and repression of civil society activists and the limited contact with prisoners, it is likely that the number of juvenile executions is much higher than recorded.