Iran to execute five Ahwazis ‘within days’: rights activist

Iranian authorities informed the families of five detainees from the Arab-dominated Ahwaz province that their sons will be hanged in public “within days” for allegedly killing a security member and wounding another in 2011, a local human rights activist told Al Arabiya on Tuesday.

The detainees include three brothers – Abdelrahman, Taha, and Jamsheed Haidari – and their cousin Mansour Haidari and Ameer Moawya. They were arrested in 2011 and charged with the murder of a security member and the wounding of another. Their families say the detainees confessed to the murder under torture.

Karim Abdian, director of the Ahwaz Human Rights Organization, told Al Arabiya that the execution plan comes ahead of the April 15 commemoration of uprisings that took place in several Iranian cities in 2005 in protest against a government program designed to change the demographic structure of areas dominated by ethnic Arabs. According to that government plan, ethnic Arabs would become a minority within 10 years.

During the April 15 uprisings, known as the Bloody Friday, dozens of Arab-Iranians were killed, 500 injured, and 250 arrested during protests in the city of Ahwaz.

Abdian explained that by executing people at this period in time, Iranian authorities seek to spread fear among residents and thwart them from organizing protests on April 15.

Abdian criticized “the silence” of Iranian political parties and human rights …

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