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Juvenile Offender Yousef Mirzavand Executed for Murder in Dezful

2 Jan 23
Juvenile Offender Yousef Mirzavand Executed for Murder in Dezful

Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO); January 2, 2023: Yousef Mirzavand, a juvenile offender sentenced to qisas (retribution-in-kind) for murder, was executed in Dezful Prison.

According to information obtained by Iran Human Rights, a man was executed in Dezful Prison on December 26. His identity has been established as 22-year-old Yousef Mirzavand who was sentenced to qisas for murder.

Informed sources told Iran Human Rights that Yousef Mirzavand was 16 years old at the time arrest. According to court documents received by Iran Human Rights, the charges against Yousef were “initiating an armed robbery, carrying hunting weapons without a licence, committing intentional assault with a weapon, murder, accessory to murder and conspiracy to escape trial.”

An informed source told Iran Human Rights: “Yousef was accused of killing someone with a weapon when he was 16 but his family said he was innocent. Someone else had committed the murder and Yousef had taken the wrap for it. He was arrested six years ago and had been detained since.”

“Yousef was from the Mirzavand tribe in Lorestan. The elders had been trying to convince the victim’s family to forgo executions for five days but were unsuccessful,” the source added.

Iran is one of the few countries in the world that still carries out the death penalty for juvenile offenders. The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which the Islamic Republic is a signatory to, prohibits the issuance and implementation of the death penalty for crimes committed by an individual below 18 years of age. 

The Convention on the Rights of the Child, which the Islamic Republic is also a signatory to, explicitly states that “Neither capital punishment nor life imprisonment without possibility of release shall be imposed for offences committed by persons below eighteen years of age.” However, the new Islamic Penal Code adopted in 2013 explicitly defines the “age of criminal responsibility” for children as the age of maturity under Sharia law, meaning that girls over 9 lunar years of age and boys over 15 lunar years of age are eligible for execution if convicted of “crimes against God” (such as apostasy) or “retribution crimes”(such as murder).