Iranian Kurd political prisoner Heidar Ghorbani was hanged today at dawn in Sanandaj Prison, west Iran on charges of “armed rebellion against the state” despite a faulty trial and international requests to stop his execution.
Heidar Ghorbani was tortured to make forced televised confessions when he was arrested in 2016. His lawyer, Saleh Nikbakht said he was hanged at 4am and that his family was not informed of his execution and were only told to go to the local cemetery after Heidar was killed.
Saleh Nikbakht said that Heidar was not informed of his execution from the night before. He told his lawyer over the phone at around 7:30 pm yesterday that his case was going to be reviewed again.
Heidar Ghorbani’s brother, was also arrested this morning following his brother’s execution.
Kurd human rights groups say Heidar’s body was buried by security forces this morning in west Iran.
Locals gathered outside the home of Heidar Ghorbani’s family to pay their condolences following his hasty, secret execution today at dawn.
Heidar Ghorbani, a member of the Kurdish minority community, along with his brother-in-law Mahmoud Sadeqi, were arrested by agents of the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) back in 2016 and immediately transferred to Sanandaj Central Prison.
They were accused of cooperation in the killing of several members of the Revolutionary Guard and membership in the outlawed Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (DPIK).
According to his family, Heidar Ghorbani was forced to confess under duress and psychological torture.
His forced confessions were later broadcasted on the English channel of the Iranian state-run television, Press TV in 2017.
Ghorbani was sentenced to death in January 2020. In August 2020, Branch 27 of the Iranian regime’s so-called Supreme Court upheld his death sentence. The dossier was then transferred to the Prosecutor’s Office in the city of Sanandaj for the execution to be carried out. In August 2021, the Iranian regime’s Supreme Court rejected his second request for judicial review.
In an audio file, one of Ghorbani’s former cellmates revealed details about the regime’s brutal torture against him. “There were torture marks on his wrists, on his hips. They had beat him so much that his throat had become infected from screaming from pain… his body was bruised from the torture… They had hung him from the ceiling and beat him,” the prisoner said. “He told me that they had forced him to confess and recorded the confessions. I saw with my own eyes that they took him for torture.”
In recent months, human rights experts and activists have repeatedly warned about Ghorbani’s imminent execution.