Iran: Shirkuh Moarefi's Execution was Delayed


According to Mr. Shekhi, Shirkuh Moarefi’s lawyer, his client was returned to the general ward of the Saqez Central Prison, after being taken to solitary confinement (which usually happens to death row inmates before the execution). Mr. Shekhi added in his interview to Human Rights Activists in Iran that he hasn’t received a notice about the date for Shirkuh’s execution.

The lawyer described the proceedings of the case: in 2008 his client was sentenced to death for “enmity to God”, but because the charges against him were not supported by evidence or eyewitnesses, the lawyer filed an appeal to the Court of Appeals. This court turned down the appeal. Then, this March, the lawyer appealed to the Supreme Court, but the Court is yet to make a ruling on the case.

After Shirkuh was transferred to solitary confinement, Mr. Shekhi wrote to the Persecutor of Saqez, reminding him that executing a prisoner while his case is being reviewed by the Supreme Court is against the law. Afterward, Shirkuh was placed back in the general ward.

According to the lawyer, the charges against his Shirkuh are fabricated. Shirkuh insists that he has never participated in an armed struggle against the Islamic Republic and surrendered willingly to the Islamic Revolutionary Guards. Iran’s Penal Code stipulates in cases where the defendant is accused of enmity to God, guilt shall be established based on the testimonies of two just men or the confession of the defendant. However, Shirkuh hasn’t confessed to this crime, and the regime hasn’t produced the testimonies of two men to support their claim that Shirkuh was a member in a militia.