Execution as a tool of repression in the hands of the Islamic Republic of Iran

By:Omar Balaki

According to statistics released by the Boroumand Organization, the number of executions in Iran during the 40 years of the Islamic Republic has been 25,400. The question is always asked, what is the Islamic Republic’s view on the death penalty, and what is its goal by insisting on the continuation of executions? Is the Islamic Republic’s purpose in this punishment the stability of security, the fight against crime, and social crimes in the country?  If so, how much has the death penalty reduced crime in Iranian society? Or do they mean creating an atmosphere of fear and intimidation in the community?

The experience of the government of the Islamic Republic for more than four decades has left no doubt that the death penalty, like extreme violence, has been one of the most effective tools and devices of the regime to control society and prevent any protests.  The continuing development of crime in the community and the increase in the number of prisoners (since the Islamic Republic in power) show that executions and violence have failed to ensure society’s security, law, security, and the Islamic Republic continues to pursue its goals.

The use of execution tools for extreme political and social oppression and violence is tied to the Islamic Republic history. The first clear violation of human rights began just four days after the Iranian people’s revolution in Tehran’s Farah High Court with the execution of former regime officials, a start to the killing and destruction of dissidents and enemies that few protested in the revolutionary environment at the time.  The process that continued with the execution of political prisoners and the Islamic Republic took the streets to intimidate the community and took the execution trees to the streets and front of the people, which is still rising.

Execution is the most severe punishment that will take the convict’s life. There will be no return after the execution, meaning that if it is later determined that the executed man was innocent, the work will be out of control, and no compensation can be replaced. The death penalty’s ineffectiveness in protecting society’s softness has led to an increase in the number of people who oppose it day by day, and the penal code is repealed or rarely enforced in many countries. According to some statistics from 195 UN member states in 153 countries, the death penalty is currently abolished. Instead, other choices and alternative sentences are intended to reduce or eliminate crime in society. It has become clear that the decision has left a much more positive place in society. But in the Islamic Republic of Iran, the story is different.

There is no day in Iran under the Islamic Republic’s control that the execution rope is not raised in dozens of prison yards.  But from this perspective, neither security has been given to the people nor protected from society’s principles and values. However, the Islamic Republic has used it to intimidate society and escape political injustice and fight public outcry.

In Iran, under the Islamic Republic’s authority, the death penalty is enforced in law and enjoys the religious protection of Shiite ayatollahs. Even executions have been permitted on the streets and in the public’s public opinion. All of this is to say and show that an official and critic who speaks out against the Islamic Republic regime will be sentenced to death. In the Islamic Republic’s courts, dissidents and critics are tried for corruption on earth and fighting God. The Islamic Republic leaders see themselves as god’s representative on earth and see every act against themselves and their orders in line to oppose God.  With the ruling that the defendant declared war on God, he should not survive on the earth, and a death sentence should be issued on him. The execution of journalist and media activist Ruhollah Zam is one of the latest examples of such sentences. The murder of dissidents who revealed the corruption of the authorities was kidnapped by fraud and sentenced to “corruption on the ground” in court. Executions have meant that from the Regime’s Justice Organization perspective, who criticizes the country’s administrative system, theft and corruption of the authorities, questions the government’s foreign policies, and writes about society’s sufferings is a corruptor on earth, and is punishable by death. The Islamic Republic of Iran has always been the second in the execution sought after China over the past 40 years; considering the number of Iranian and Chinese populations, we can say that Iran has the first place in execution in the world.  However, human rights advocacy institutions have long condemned Iran’s execution, and the regime has consistently faced opposition by the international community, and the United Nations has been declared and united against it.  But the Islamic Republic authorities have not abandoned the death penalty and, without caring about their protests and condemnations, insist on the execution.  As we said, the death penalty for the Islamic Republic authorities is an essential tool for physically eliminating its opponents, creating and imposing an atmosphere of fear and intimidation in society.

In order to consolidate its hegemony against the Iranian people, the Islamic Republic regime will not only stop the death penalty, but it will not consider the laws and principles related to this issue in carrying out this punishment.  Therefore, it can be said that executions carried out in the Islamic Republic of Iran are a form of intentional murder or assassination by the government.  For example, throughout the Islamic Republic regime’s life, those who have different ideas and oppose the power have been sentenced to death by the supreme leader, and this sentence has been carried out on them and registered as assassinations of dissidents in the regime’s record. The regime’s security agencies have often tried to kill people in different ways if they return him from abroad and be sentenced to death in a show trial that is no different from terrorism.  Someone who has already been ordered killed and the regime’s security agency has tried to assassinate him outside Iran’s borders, bring him to the country and execute him.

What the Authorities of the Islamic Republic have done so far can have two goals behind it.  The first goal is to remove their opposition in any way they can, and their second goal is to threaten their opponents inside the country, wherever they are in the world.  Hence, It has created an environment where the threat of repression and threats from security centers continues to remain and be felt by the regime’s critics and even their families.

As long as executions take place, the Islamic Republic will return some executions to the “rights” of the people. Qisas, which is considered a right to blood transfusion under religious law, is one of the rights that the Islamic Republic of Iran has given to the people!  And in their own words, they are trying their best to secure this right for people. But all other people’s political and civil rights such as national rights, social rights, freedom of expression, freedom of elections, etc. denies.

Human groups’ experience has shown that social inconsistencies are a fundamental phenomenon and that solving them is positively related to having a proper education system and enacting laws.  But dictatorial and totalitarian powers are trying to impose and maintain will and violence against their people by resorting to violent tools – execution, for instance – but only by trying to set and sustain their will and authority.

Translated By:Houshyar Honar Pajooh