Nayeri asked the prisoner “are you a grand son of Ayatollah Talegani (one of opponents of Khomeini)? Execution!” And just like that they executed him.
Masoud was born in 1964 in Tehran, Iran. He was the grandson of Ayatollah Talegani, a cleric that was well-known for his progressive and anti-fundamentalist beliefs.
He learned the pains of struggle from childhood since his grand father spent all of his life in prison or exile.
Although, Masoud knew about the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) since his childhood (from his family), he really learned about the PMOI after 1979 revolution in high school. He was a member of student association of Tehran in north and west. Masoud was an active member in distributing PMOI’s newspapers and books or participating in grand gatherings. Masoud was only 17 years old and was in grade 11 when he was arrested in 1981.
One of eyewitness reports from prison says Lajevardi (Revolutionary Prosecutor of Tehran and Head of Evin Prison, known as Butcher of Evin) threatened Masoud and force him to participate in firing squads, but Masoud refused to do so. That cost him two years in Solitary cells punishment.
Masoud was targeted and tortured twice as hard compared to other prisoners because of his family relationship with Ayatollah Talegani.
One of his cellmates in Ghazalhesar prison in 1982 said he was in a location called quarantine when he met Masoud. He once witnessed Masoud was being attacked with kicks and punches by one of the guards. The guard’s name was Haj Davood. He was always insulting him, only because he was the grand son of Talegani.
Masoud was sentenced to death in 1988 by Hosain ali Nayeri who was one of the Death Board’s Members. Nayeri mocking Masoud asked “are you a grandson of Ayatollah Talegani? Execution!”
Hossein-Ali Nayeri graduated from seminary and started his career in the Islamic Republic’s judiciary after the 1979 Revolution.
Masoud was 24 when he was executed. They didn’t return the body to his family. His family just know he has been buried in Khavaran, a mass grave for the 1988 massacre victims.
A Crime Against Humanity
- In 1988, the Iranian regime massacred 30,000 political prisoners.
- The executions took place based on a fatwa by Supreme Leader Khomeini.
- Three-member commissions known as ‘Death Commissions’ were formed across Iran sending political prisoners who refused to abandon their beliefs to execution.
- The victims were buried in secret mass graves.
- The perpetrators continue to enjoy impunity.
- Since 2016, the names of nearly 100 ‘Death Commission’ members have been revealed. Many still hold senior positions in the Iranian judiciary or government.
The Human Rights Council needs to conduct an international investigation into the 1988 massacre. This would be the first step to end the impunity for the officials, agents and those who ordered the largest political crime of the century.
Khamenei and other leaders of the regime need to be prosecuted and face justice for committing crimes against humanity.