Yesterday seven Sunni prisoners were condemned to death. They have spent the last seven years since 2009 in prison in limbo under physical and psychological torture.
News of the imminent executions follows last week’s arrest (30 May 2016) of two Sunni brothers. The Media Express news agency has been told that the brothers Ali and Farooq Mavot were arrested in their home, beaten and transferred to an unknown location.
Just last month (2 May 2016) a report by USCIRF (US Commission on International Religious Freedom) condemned Iran’s judicial system of religious bias saying the regime ‘continues to use its religious laws to silence reformers.’
Furthermore, during a speech to the Majlis (parliament) yesterday Supreme leader Khamenei talked about ‘ethnic enemies’; warning law-makers of the threat of verbal confrontations [protests], pushing law-makers to ‘strive to prevent politico-religious and factional rifts’.
One of the apparatus already in place to combat factional rifts in Iran has been for Khamenei to divert government spending towards domestic security; handing control to the discretion of the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) but also to the clerical regime’s Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS).
But on this matter the USCIRF are critical to say it’s a violation of the Iranian people’s internationally-protected inalienable right to exercise Freedom of Expression and Religion or Belief; saying the values are ‘under assault.’
Iran has an overall population of a little over 80 million, of which ‘approximately 99 percent are Muslim, segmented as 90% Shi’a and just 9% the Sunni minority.’
Alongside the identities of the Sunni brothers Ali and Farooq Mavot arrested last week, the names of the seven Sunni men given death sentences yesterday are Davoud Abdollahi, Kamran Sheikheh, Farhad Salimi, Anvar Khezri, Khosrow Besharat, Qassem Abasteh and Ayoub Karimi.