Iranian Teacher Abdolreza Ghanbari on the Verge of Execution

Imprisoned teacher Abdolreza Ghanbari’s pardon request has been denied by the Pardon Commission of Tehran Province Judiciary, a source close to his family told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran. With the rejection of his pardon request, once the head of the Judiciary issues his approval, Ghanbari may be executed at any moment.

“On Monday, just before his visit with his family, prison authorities informed him that his pardon request has been refused. Mr. Ghanbari gave this news to his family during their visit. Now they are concerned day and night that Abdolreza’s death sentence may be carried out at any moment,” the source said.

Abdolreza Ghanbari, 44, is a Persian literature teacher and a resident of the poverty-stricken Pakdasht, near the town of Varamin. He was arrested immediately following the street protests on 27 December 2009 (Ashura Day) at his place of work, and was tried on 30 January 2010 without the knowledge of his family or access to a defense lawyer.

Branch 15 of Tehran Revolutionary Court under Judge Salavati sentenced Ghanbari to death on charges of “moharebeh (enmity with God), through participation in the street gatherings on Ashura Day,” and “contact with enemy groups.” Under Iran’s penal code, moharebeh is meant …

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