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Haunted Memories: The Islamic Republic’s Executions of Kurds in 1979

he had in Paveh and Mariwan, Khalkhali questioned men and boys who had been arrested without warrants and sentenced them, without any semblance of fair trials, to death by firing squad.

On August 28, Ettelaat newspaper reported that the Islamic Revolutionary Court had met the day before and “after a few hours of investigation and council,” found eleven people deserving of execution but acquitted twelve others. It reported that the eleven people had been executed at 4:30 that afternoon. The paper listed the names, evidence and charges of the eleven as follows:

  • Brigadier General Mozaffar Niazmand, former commander of Kurdistan Gendarmerie, charged with crushing the freedom fighting people of Sanandaj during the liberating struggle of the people of Iran (before the victory of the revolution). The Court also sentenced that all his property should be seized; 144
  • Sirous Manouchehri, head of the internal security of Sanandaj SAVAK, charged with participation in club wielding in Sanandaj surroundings and direct participation in crushing people and issuing orders for killing and massacre of the innocent and liberated people of Sanandaj;145
Aside from the aforementioned two who were arrested after the victory of the revolution and had so far been in prison, the other nine were executed in connection with the events in Kurdistan after the victory of the revolution. The nine were:
  • Ataollah Zandi, charged with carrying explosive and mortar shell on the night of August 19, 1979. He was arrested when attempting to blow up Sanandaj airport;146
  • Ali Asghar Mobasseri, charged with armed activity and inviting people to riot and uprising against the Islamic government (was arrested while carrying mortar shells near Sanandaj airport); 147
  • Jamil Yakhchali, student at the Military Technical School in Masjed Soleiman and a believer in Kurdistan’s separation; he had travelled from Masjed Soleiman to Sanandaj and participated in armed activities, charged with uprising against the Islamic government;148
  • Shahriar Nahid, son of Mohsen, resident of Tehran’s Majidiyeh neighborhood, had travelled to Baneh, Mariwan, Saqqez and Sanandaj due to armed activity and participated in the armed activities of these cities, he was arrested and disarmed during armed combating in Sanandaj and was a member of the Fedaian Guerillas of Tehran;

[144] See also, HUMAN RIGHTS & DEMOCRACY LIBRARY, Boroumand Foundation [hereinafter Boroumand], “One Person’s Story Mr. Mozaffar Niazmand, available athttp://www.iranrights.org/english/memorial-case--4837.php.
[145] See also, Boroumand Foundation, “One Person’s Story Mr. Sirus Manuchehri, available athttp://www.iranrights.org/english/memorial-case--4838.php.
[146] Jamil Navareh remembers that Zandi was not affiliated with any Kurdish political party. IHRDC Interview with (May 29, 2011) (on file with IHRDC) [hereinafter Navareh Interview].
[147] According to a friend, Mobasseri had a mortar shell in his car that was left over from when the Kurds took over the military base in March. He had nothing to launch it with and was driving through town, not near the airport. IHRDC Interview with Amir Kolahghuchi (Feb. 15, 2011) (on file with IHRDC) [hereinafter Kolahghuchi Interview].
[148] Yakhchali is believed to have been a sympathizer of the Fedaian-e Khalq. See Boroumand Foundation, “One Person’s Story” Mr. Jamil Yakhchali, available at http://www.iranrights.org/english/memorial-case--4836.php. The Fedaian-e Khalq was created in 1971 through the merger of two armed Marxist-Leninist groups. See IHRDC, DEADLY FATWA: IRAN’S 1988 PRISON MASSACRE 6 (2009), available at http://www.iranhrdc.org/english/publications/reports/3158-deadly-fatwa-iran-s-1988-prison-massacre.html.

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