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Iran: Man executed for drinking alcohol (www.amnesty.org)

Following the Iranian judicial authorities’ confirmation that on 8 July, a man in the city of Mashhad was executed following repeated convictions for drinking alcohol, Diana Eltahawy, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director of Middle East and North Africa, said:

“The Iranian authorities have once again laid bare the sheer cruelty and inhumanity of their judicial system by executing a man simply for drinking alcohol. The victim was the latest person to be executed in Valkalibad prison, the site of numerous secret mass executions and a grotesque theatre of Iran’s contempt for human life. 




The Iranian authorities have once again laid bare the sheer cruelty and inhumanity of their judicial system by executing a man simply for drinking alcohol. The victim was the latest person to be executed in Valkalibad prison, the site of numerous secret mass executions and a grotesque theatre of Iran’s contempt for human life



Diana Eltahawy

“We deplore the Iranian authorities’ repeated use of the death penalty, which has earned it the shameful status of the world’s second most prolific executioner. There is no justification for the death penalty which is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment, and we urge the Iranian authorities to abolish it.”

Under Iran’s Islamic Penal Code, consumption of alcoholic beverages is punishable by 80 lashes, and if an individual is convicted and sentenced three times, the punishment on the fourth occasion is death.




We deplore the Iranian authorities’ repeated use of the death penalty, which has earned it the shameful status of the world’s second most prolific executioner



Diana Eltahawy

A 55-year-old, Mortaza Jamali, was named as the victim of the execution in Mashhad, Razavi Khorasan province, in reports by independent media outlets and on social media. At the time of writing, Amnesty International had not yet been able to obtain more information about the details of his trial and sentencing.

In response to public outrage over the execution, the department of justice in Razavi Khorasan province issued an official statement today, listing the man’s criminal record from previous cases unrelated to his death sentence, in what appears to be a crude attempt to “justify” his execution.

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases without exception regardless of the nature or circumstances of the crime; guilt, innocence or other characteristics of the individual; or the method used by the state to carry out the execution. Amnesty International recorded at least 251 executions in Iran in 2019 in its annual Death Penalty report.

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