Three Baluch prisoners were executed today in Zahedan Prison, in the southeastern Sistan-Baluchistan province, the state-run media reported.
The three men identified as 28-year-old Hassan Dehvari, 21-year-old Elias Qalandarzehi, and Omid Mahmoudzehi were executed in the early morning of January 3, the judiciary’s official Mizan news agency reported.
The three were transferred to solitary confinement in Zahedan Prison on January 1 to await their death sentence.
Hassan Dehvari and Elias Qalandarzehi were arrested in April 2014 after being found with “a large amount of explosives” and weapons, the report said.
The state-run news agency Tasnim reported their deaths as “the execution of terrorist bombers and an armed insurgent”.
The Sistan and Baluchestan Judiciary charged the Baluch political prisoners with “armed measures against the police and collaboration with an armed dissident group”.
However, the Baluch Campaign, a human rights group based in the US said Dehvari and Qalandarzehi were detained because their families are members of dissident groups.
According to Mohammadreza Faqihi, lawyer to the Baluch prisoners Hassan and Elias, he had requested an appeal to the Supreme Court and the case was pending review.
Their lawyer had told the state affiliated Telegram channel Emtedad that their sentence should be postponed until the end of the retrial.
“After carefully studying their case in the Revolutionary Court of Zahedan, we found flaws in the judicial procedure. Therefore, the verdict issued for them is similarly flawed,” Faqihi said.
Omid Mahmoudzehi was accused of “participation in kidnapping and murder”, but no other information about this prisoner has been reported by independent sources.
Hassan Dehvari and Elias Qalandarzehi were arrested in April 2014 by Sistan and Baluchestan intelligence agents. Hassan Dehvari, 28, was the father of five children, while 21-year-old Elias Qalandarzehi was the father of a girl. They were both brutally tortured and kept in solitary confinement for 112 days. Their death sentence was based on forced confessions under torture.
According to reports, the Baluch prisoners were flogged and electrocuted with an iron cap on their heads. Their fingernails and toenails were also pulled out while their wives were detained and threatened with rape in front of a camera among other forms of torture.
There has been an alarming escalation in use of the death penalty against members of Baluch ethnic minority in Iran with various reports of due process denials and the use of torture and forced confessions against those executed.
Three prisoners identified as Behnam Rigi and Shoaib Rigi and Abdolbaset Khesht were recently executed in southeast Iran, two in the central prison in Zahedan, and one in the central prison in Dozap, also in the province, all of whom were accused of membership in militant Sunni Muslim groups.
Another Baluch political prisoner was hanged in December 2020. Abdolhamid Mirbaluch Zehi, 30 was hanged on December 26. His sentence was carried out even though his lawyer said he was waiting for an appeal of the death sentence. He was also tortured and had denied the charges brought against him.
Two other Baluch prisoners were executed the same day in Zahedan Prison. Khodadad Nohtani and Mehraban Barahouyi were charged with drug crimes.
Another prisoners in Zahedan’s central prison is believed to be in imminent danger of execution, according to reports from the province.