Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 31 / Trend T.Konyayeva/
The upcoming execution of the Canadian citizen of Iranian origin, Saeed Malekpour, in Iran provoked public outcry in Canada and the condemnation of the entire international community, the Canadian media outlet s' statement "Canada, raise your voice louder for Saeed Malekpour!" reads.
A day after the illegal execution of Iranian-Dutch citizen Zahra Bahrami on Jan. 29, 2011 in
Evin prison, the Tehran Prosecutor released a statement on government-controlled news sites
about more imminent executions.
The Tehran Prosecutor was quoted as saying that the death sentences issued to two admins of obscene websites were sent to the Supreme Court for "confirmation and approval". The announcement caused international Persian media outlets, namely BBC and Voice of America, to go on alert.
Saeed Malekpour, a 35 year old Canadian Permanent Resident imprisoned in Iran is one of the
victims mentioned in the statement by the Tehran Prosecutor. Prior to his arrest, Malekpour was living in Canada with his wife. He was working as a freelance computer programmer.
"Unfortunately, with the case of Zahra Bahrami, since the Dutch government did not take quick steps in her defense, authorities of the Islamic Republic of Iran were free of international pressure and had an easy time executing her without fear of any consequences on an international level," the statement reads.
46-year-old Zahra Bahrami, who had Iranian and Dutch citizenships, was executed on Jan.28 in Iran for drug trafficking. The sentence was fulfilled despite protests of the European Union.
Bahrami, was arrested in January 2010. Police found 450 grams of cocaine and about the same amount of opium on her. According to the relatives of the executed, all charges against her were fabricated, and she was arrested due to the fact that she was participating in the anti-Government opposition in 2009.
In early 2011, Canada's Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon issued a statement on human rights violations in Iran and mentioned the case of Malekpour.
"I am particularly concerned by the uncertain fate of two Canadians of dual nationality who remain in prison in Iran," cannon said. He added that Ottawa was worried about reports that Saeed Malekpour had been sentenced to death.
The statement reads that Malekpour has endured much physical and psychological torture by interrogators for the purpose of extracting false confessions from him regarding bogus internet-related charges.
After spending 444 days in solitary confinement, Malekpour wrote a letter to Iran's head of Judiciary, asserting that all his confessions were extracted under immense pressure, torture, threats, and false promises of release, leniency, and bail. In his letter, he described the unfathomable torture he faced; lashings, threats of sexual assault, and interrogation sessions that resulted in broken teeth, a displaced jaw, bodily infections, and bouts of paralysis.
When Saeed Malekpour's letter of torture was ignored by Iranian authorities, his wife who lives in Canada published the text online and it was distributed by international media outlets. This act enraged Iranian authorities and they retaliated by opening up a second case file against Saeed Malekpour, charging him with "Conspiring with his wife against national security".
Malekpour has not been provided a fair opportunity to defend himself from the charges laid against him.
"It is becoming increasingly obvious that this chance will never come, as strong evidence suggests that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has predetermined his fate," the statement reads.
The Canadian government has made some efforts to address Iran's continued and systematic
human & civil rights abuses. Additionally, Canada is among the co-sponsors of the United
Nations resolution on Iran's human rights violations. Canadian officials, especially Prime
Minister Stephen Harper, are strongly urged to raise their voices louder and stand firmer against
the illegal crimes committed by the Islamic Republic of Iran against Canadian Permanent
Resident Saeed Malekpour.
From December 20, 2010 to January 30, 2011 alone, the Islamic Republic of Iran has executed
over 118 individuals while many more await to face the gallows. In recent years, Iran has had the
highest rate of executions per capita in the world.