On Christmas day in Iran, at least nine prisoners were hanged by Iranian regime officials, according to reports. The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) reports that seven were hanged in the infamous Adelabad prison on Christmas morning.
The NCRI also reports that on two separate occasions, just days before Christmas, ten other prisoners were hanged in the same Adelabad prison. Additionally, NCRI said the hangings continued on Monday, with two suffering the same fate in Iran’s Orumieh prison.
Adelabad and Orumieh are two of the many jails in Iran where prisoners’ human rights are grossly violated. One former political prisoner of Adelabad described the facility as one where individuals are routinely sodomized, “beaten, tortured, and harassed.”
Iran has now executed an estimated 707 people in 2014 alone, according to the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center (IHRDC). The number of executions under “moderate” President Rouhani has now far surpassed that of his predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Since Christmas, the IHRDC reports that ten others have been hanged under various charges.
Many of those 707 people declared worthy of capital punishment have been charged with “Moharebeh,” or “waging war against Allah.” Others are simple drug offenders.
The news comes as U.S. President Barack Obama declared Tuesday that he would consider renewing diplomatic ties with the Ayatollah’s regime and establishing an embassy in Tehran. He went further, declaring that Iran could become a legitimate “regional power” should they agree to a deal that ensured Tehran abides by “international norms and international rules.”
Note: Some of the reporting in this piece is derived from the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which is an anti-regime coalition founded by the controversial People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK). While the MEK was founded on a radical left-wing, anti-American platform, the group claims that it has recently changed its ideology. The organization says it now rejects Shariah law, and that it believes in gender equality, private property, a market economy, and a commitment to “peaceful coexistence” with its neighbors.