EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: MDE 13/03/93
12 March 1993
Further information on UA 382/92 (MDE 13/22/92, 3 December 1992) - Fear of
torture/death penalty/unfair trial
IRAN: Abdollah Bagheri
Amnesty International fears that Abdollah Bagheri may be in danger of torture
or ill-treatment and possibly execution following an unfair trial. Abdollah
Bagheri, a former member of the Kurdish opposition group, Komala, was arrested
at the beginning of November 1992 outside Mariwan, close to the Iraq border.
A response sent by the Iranian authorities at the end of February states the
"Mr Abdollah Bagheri is a high ranking official of the Komala movement. He
was arrested on the Iran/Iraq border for his illegal and armed border crossing
and will be charged with [undertaking] terrorist attacks. He is responsible
for many murders. The proceedings have not yet been completed.
Similar to all defendants, Mr Bagheri has the right to an individual proceeding
and legal assistance."
Political trials in the Islamic Republic of Iran fall far short of
internationally accepted standards for fair trial. Trial hearings are almost
always held in camera, inside prisons; proceedings are summary, hearings often
lasting only a few minutes. Despite official assurances regarding access to
lawyers, Amnesty International continues to receive reports indicating that
political detainees are denied access to legal counsel and that they have no
right of appeal.
No substantive steps have been taken to introduce safeguards for detainees
and fears continue that those arrested are at risk of torture and ill-treatment.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/express and airmail
letters either in English or your own language:
- reiterating your concern that Abdollah Bagheri may be at risk of execution
and urging the commutation of any death sentence that may have been passed
- referring to Article 14.2 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights (ICCPR) which states "Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall
have the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law",
and expressing concern at the apparent lack of the recognition of this principle
in the case of Abdollah Bagheri;