Leaked docs show 5,370 prisoners on Iran's death row face being stoned to death & hung from cranes for petty crimes | The Sun

HARROWING records leaked from Iran's torturous prisons reveal 5,370 people are holed up on death row on charges as petty as drinking alcohol or insulting the Supreme Leader.

The classified documents include 51 people condemned to vile stoning deaths and some 3,802 prisoners set to be executed on the country's barbaric "eye for an eye" laws – known as Qisas.

Those condemned to Qisas are often maimed and executed by victims’ grieving families

The cruel law is designed to inflict as much pain as possible in retaliation – including having eyes gouged out, hands chopped off and even the mass, public hangings.

Shock records, obtained by The Sun Online from sources of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) smuggled from inside Iran's prisons, reveal the names, ages and charges of those on death row as of September 26, 2020.

It means some executions may have already been carried out and new ones added.

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Some 1,568 men and women on the list have been sentenced to death under the state's general penal code for so-called crimes that wouldn't even render prison time in other countries.

Five people are facing executions for "insulting the Supreme Leader" Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

A further six are on death row for disturbing national security, while 33 are on the list for drinking alcohol among other charges.

Based on secret records obtained from the Prisons Organisation, there are 183 women among those facing the cruel punishment.

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Hossein Abedini, deputy director of the UK office of the NCRI, said it amounts to "genocide".

He told The Sun Online: "Iran's regime is the world's number one executioner per capita.

"Last year, it executed more people than all the other countries of the world combined, except for China. Last week alone, the regime carried out 38 executions.

"The increasing rate of executions and the inhumane and medieval punishments being handed down in Iran is indicative of the regime's fear of public outrage and uprisings.

"However, the people of Iran are determined to overthrow the religious fascism ruling Iran as they did with the Shah's brutal dictatorship.

"The struggle will continue until the establishment of a republic based on democratic values."

The increasing rate of executions and the inhumane and medieval punishments being handed down in Iran is indicative of the regime's fear of public outrage and uprisings.

In 2021, Iran recorded the highest known execution figure since 2017 in a dark testament to its dire human rights record.

Worldwide, executions shot up 20 per cent from the year before – with Iran accounting for the biggest portion of the rise, figures from Amnesty International show.

At least 314 met their death in 2021 – up from at least 246 in 2020.

Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary-General, said: "After the drop in their execution totals in 2020, Iran once again ramped up their use of the death penalty last year, including by shamelessly violating prohibitions put in place under international human rights law.

"Their appetite for putting the executioner to work has also shown no sign of abating in the early months of 2022."

Iran has a mandatory death penalty for possession of certain types and quantities of drugs.

Other crimes punishable by execution include burglary, prostitution, rebellion, producing porn, treason and murder.

Drinking just one glass of alcohol is punishable by 80 lashes – but those who are consistently caught knocking back booze can find themselves hit with the death penalty.

Children as young as 12 are handed the death penalty – which international law forbids. 

In most cases, prisoners hit with the death penalty are hanged.

But often, this is not done on a drop, where death comes quickly after the neck is broken and construction cranes are used instead.

The condemned person is hoisted up on a neck noose and strangled in a slow and agonising way.

Crowds are encouraged to watch and some executions are televised – with several people sometimes hanged at one time.

In a sick twist to the brutal mass hangings carried out, those awaiting execution have been made to watch others die.

Other methods of execution include stoning with victims subjected to having rocks hurled at their heads while trapped in sand.

And for homosexuality, which is deemed a crime in Iran, authorities have been known to push people from heights, such as off a cliff.


Shocking executions and barbaric punishments continue to be carried out under hardline cleric Ebrahim Raisi who became president last summer despite activists claiming he has a bloody history steeped in murder.

In the past, Raisi – who has the vile nickname The Butcher – has allegedly ordered the torture of pregnant women, had prisoners thrown off cliffs, and had people flogged with electric cords.

He earned his sick nickname over his alleged involvement in the mass execution of political prisoners in the 1980s.

Some 30,000 men, women and children held in prisons across Iran were lined up and shot against a wall within just a few months, according to those battling to oust the ultra-conservative regime.

It's reported Raisi was a key member of the so-called "Death Commission" which ordered those people to be killed in the 1988 massacre – which Iran has never acknowledged.

Mr Abedini said: "The rise in the rate of executions in Iran since Raisi took office as president is part of a culture of impunity that has been fulled in part by the international community's failure to seek accountability for the regime's major past crimes."

The NCRI has called for Raisi to be prosecuted and urged countries including the UK to take action.

Mr Abedini added: "How can the UK government maintain cordial political and economic relations with a regime that has more than 5,000 prisoners currently on death row?

"In many cases, the regime executes dissidents on other trumped-up charges.

"The dossier of four decades of crimes against humanity and genocide committed by Iran's regime must be referred to the UN Security Council.

"The leaders of the regime, above all, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Ebrahim Raisi, must be prosecuted by the international courts.

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"It's high time for both the UK government and the international community-at-large to shun this regime and end impunity for its criminal leaders."

An FCDO spokesperson said: "The British Government is firmly opposed to the death penalty in all circumstances and in every country as a matter of principle."

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