Iran Issues First Death Sentence Tied to Protests

    Iran Issues First Death Sentence Tied to Protests
    Last updated Nov 16, 2022
    Image credit: AP Photo [Al Jazeera]


    • Iran's Revolutionary Court has issued its first known death sentence for participation in nationwide protests over the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. Sunday's ruling found an unidentified defendant guilty of setting a government building on fire, and sentenced them for "disturbing public order and comfort, community and colluding to commit a crime against national security."[1]
    • Iran's judiciary's website also reported that the accused had been sentenced for "waging war against God and corruption on earth," violating one of Iran's most serious laws.[2]
    • A separate court in Tehran also sentenced five others to between five and 10 years in jail for their roles in the protests that began in Iran two months ago.[3]
    • The sentences — which follow a call from the majority of Iranian ministers of parliament for the judiciary to "deal decisively" with protesters — are only preliminary, and their details will not become publicly accessible until an appeals court confirms that they're appropriate.[4]
    • Hundreds of demonstrators in three provinces were charged over their actions on Sunday, and over 2K people have been charged by authorities since the unrest began. 164 protesters have been charged in the southern province of Hormozgan, while 276 more have been charged in the central region of Markazi — however, 100 young people were released once they had signed pledges agreeing not to continue demonstrating.[5]
    • Unrest in Iran has also been prompted by allegations that a police commander raped a 15-year-old girl who was in custody in the port city of Chabahar. At least 123 people were killed when security forces opened fire on protesters in the province of Sistine-Baluchistan, in demonstrations prompted by the allegations. According to NGO Iran Human Rights, at least 326 people have now been killed by security forces due to the ongoing protests.[6]


    Pro-Iran narrative

    These sentences demonstrate that the judiciary is responding to calls from elected officials to end the ongoing insecurity and instability in Iran for reasons of public safety. It's clear that the US is implicated in these protests and the Iranian people are paying the price. Such a forceful response to violent, illegal acts will help secure the situation.

    Anti-Iran narrative

    Iran is one of the world's leading executioners — it's cementing that reputation with the news that civilians will be sentenced to death for demonstrating against its regime. Authoritarian clerics are threatened by continued protests against the existing patriarchal system and, by resorting to capital punishment, they've shown their fear of the genuine threat the unrest poses to the current draconian system.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 50% chance that Iran will cease to be an Islamic Republic by February 2036, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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