Iran Human Rights (IHR); January 5, 2021: A prisoner sentenced to qisas (retribution-in-kind) for murder, was executed with juvenile offender, Hassan Rezaei, in Rasht Central Prison on New Year’s Eve. Another prisoner committed suicide after his brother was transferred for execution.
According to Hrana News Agency, on the morning of 31 December 2020, a male prisoner was executed in Rasht Central Prison. The prisoner who had been sentenced to qisas, has been identified as Fereydoun Tavakoli, around 35 years old. Iran Human Right sources have also verified his execution.
At the time of writing, Fereydoun Tavakoli’s execution has not be reported by domestic media or officials in Iran.
IHR previously reported that on the same day, juvenile offender, Hassan Rezaei was also executed at Rasht Central Prison.
According to Hrana, three other prisoners were also transferred to solitary confinement in preparation for their executions that day, but were returned to their cells after managing to extend the deadline to pay their diyya (blood money). One of those prisoners was Mehdi Ashouri, who has been sentenced to qisas for murder. His brother, Kamran Ashouri was serving his sentence for drug-related charges at the same prison. Terrified of his brother’s execution, Kamran hung himself in the Ward 4 bathrooms, after Mehdi was transferred to solitary confinement in preparation for his execution.
Kamran Ashouri, who had been held in Ward 4 of Rasht Central Prison for 12 years on drug-related charges, left a suicide note explaining that his brother’s execution and his wife filing for divorce were the reasons for ending his life.
According to Iran Human Rights’ annual report, at least 225 of the 280 of those executed in 2019 were charged with "premeditated murder."
As there are no legal distinctions made between murder and manslaughter, whether voluntary or involuntary in Iran, those charged under the umbrella term of “premeditated murder” will receive the death penalty regardless of intent and the circumstances.