February 2, 2011
While the world's attention is focussed on the turbulent events in Egypt, Jordan and Tunisia, Tehran has dramatically increased the rate at which it is executing dissidents. In January alone 66 pro-democracy activists have been hanged following three minute show trials.
This article in the National Post tells the full story of this horrific and brutal crackdown on freedom of expression and thought. The author thinks the regime is running scared, but to me it seems more like consolidation of their power through the liberal use of state terror. Another popular uprising in Iran seems less and less likely with every fresh corpse swinging from the cranes. It seems as though the long-suffering people may be stuck with this awful criminal regime for some time.
My heart breaks for this once proud people.
In his recent article, former attorney general Irwin Cotler brings to light some of the shocking details around the recent step-up of executions and other serious human rights violations taking place in Iran. January alone saw at least 65 people executed. Amongst them were political dissidents Ali Saremi, Jafar Kazemi, Akbar Siadat and Hossein Khezri, courageous Iranians well known to dissident support groups abroad.
While the Iranian Republic has been systematically carrying out executions of both political and non-political prisoners for the past 31 years, the dramatic escalation in recent months reminds us of the summer of 1988, when thousands of political prisoners were brutally murdered after three-minute show trials. The regime proved then it was a criminal dictatorship without regard for human rights, and it seems bent on reinforcing that fact once again, and with the same heinous tactics.