Iranian Azerbaijani poet flogged 74 times for “spreading propaganda”

An Iranian Azerbaijani poet and satirist was flogged 76 times Sunday, in a court in the city of Khoy, West Azerbaijan Province.
Branch 103 of the Criminal Court of Khoy had earlier sentenced Mohammad Hossein Sodagar to 76 lashes for “spreading propaganda.”

Four days before the verdict was carried out, the city’s ‘implementation of verdicts office’ contacted Mr. Sodagar, asking him to go to the court.

When Sodagar denied to do so, the state security forces arrested him in his home and took him to the court where he received 76 lashes.

In yet another case, the state-run IRIB (The Islamic Republic of Iran’s Broadcasting) reported on December 4, 2018 that a man had been publicly flogged in Zeberkhan District. The man who had not been identified by the state media, was convicted of drug charges.
Zeberkhan is a district in Nishapur County, Razavi Khorasan Province, northeast Iran.

Torture and merciless punishment have been institutionalized in the regime’s punishment laws and is sanctioned by the Judiciary as well as the regime officials.

Hadi Sadeghi, Deputy Chancellor of the Judiciary was quoted by the state-run ISNA news agency on May 30, 2018, as saying, “There is no precepts of imprisonment in Islam, so we need to seek alternative punishments.

Physical punishment is much more effective than imprisonment, and the punishment of flogging is much more effective in Islam. But, the human rights agencies do not have a good idea on this matter.”

Under the regime’s laws, at least 148 crimes are punishable by flogging and 20 others are punishable by amputation. Sentences which are considered torture by human rights defenders and the international law.

In its report on January 18, 2017 Amnesty International said: “As a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), Iran is legally obliged to forbid torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. However, Iranian law continues to allow internationally banned corporal punishments including amputation, stoning and flogging and claims to justify it in the name of protecting religious morals.”

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