International Committee against Executions
The following letter (translated by ICAE) was issued by the family of Shirko Moarefi, a 24-year-old political dissident in Iran who is in danger of imminent execution.
Open letter by the family of political prisoner Shirko Moarefi to international bodies and human rights organisations
Shirko Moarefi is in danger of execution. This is the news which we, the Moarefi family, have been repeatedly hearing from the various media in the past two days, and which has raised our concerns a hundred times.
We have also received the news that since Thursday Shirko has been transferred to a single cell of the Ward for the Implementation of Sentences. What other conclusion can we then draw from such news and from stories about the ‘execution team’ remaining in Sanandaj and the impending visit by the Prosecutor General of the Kurdistan Province to Saqez than that everything is working together to send Shirko to the gallows?
Expert lawyers in Iran agree that Shirko has been convicted of war against the Islamic Republic only on the basis of support for a party which has long since given up armed struggle against the Islamic Republic and which has entered a publicity and cultural phase. Furthermore, Shirko’s execution sentence was passed by a court which lasted only for a few minutes. The appeal by his lawyer was unsuccessful and, worse, the sentence was confirmed by the Supreme Court.
So we the Moarefi family and relatives request all international bodies and human rights organisations, while defending the basic rights of a political prisoner, to enter into talks with the Islamic Republic regarding the threatened execution of Shirko, convincing the leaders of this government, which has religious claims, not to carry out this sentence.
We the Moarefi family believe that if Shirko has carried out actions which are deemed a crime by the laws of the Islamic Republic, then by the same Islamic laws he could be given a chance; the chance to live again and to be again.
Finally, according to Islamic penal codes, execution is the highest punishment that the judiciary considers for an accused, while kindness and affection are also amongst the most salient features of all divine religions, in particular Islam. We therefore expect that the young people of this land are judged by such affection. Is this too much to ask by an old father and a heartbroken mother?
Town of Baaneh, Iran
November 13, 2009