B.C. MP fights to save man sentenced to death following Iran protests

Click to play video: 'B.C. politician lobbies to save Iranian facing death sentence'
B.C. politician lobbies to save Iranian facing death sentence
A B.C. member of parliament has taken up the cause of a human rights protester facing imminent execution in Iran. As Negar Mojtahedi reports, the man is just one of the hundreds of people sentenced to death in the Islamic Republic this year alone – May 29, 2023

A 22-year-old man in Iran is currently in prison, facing execution and a B.C. man is trying to help save his life.

“The heartbreaking part of all of this is seeing somebody so youthful and embracing life,” Cloverdale-Langley City MP John Aldag told Global News.

Aldag is referring to a video of his political sponsor Iranian national Mohammad Ghobadlou.

In the video Ghobadlou, a barber is seen laughing and enjoying life at the shop he worked at in Tehran, Iran.

Now his life is in danger.

Mohammad Ghobadlou, a 22-year-old man in Iran, is now imprisoned and his family fears for his life. Masih Alinejad

Political sponsors use their status as politicians to put pressure on the Islamic Republic and take on the responsibility of political prisoners.

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“The challenge we’ve had in Mohammad’s case is finding out what’s really happening,” Aldag said. “Many of the sources we had have been silenced now. We know that his family have been threatened with death themselves.”

Click to play video: 'Canadians raising awareness for victims of Iranian regime'
Canadians raising awareness for victims of Iranian regime

Ghobadlou was arrested on Sept. 22 2022 during nationwide anti-regime protests sparked by the in-custody death of Mahsa Jina Amini.

In Feb. 2023, Ghobadlou had been given a stay in execution but recently Iran’s Supreme Court upheld his conviction of “corruption on earth”, and his appeal was denied. His family appealed for clemency claiming he suffered from bipolar disorder.

“Those in power in Iran should know the world is watching,” said Aldag who believes the country should be held accountable for the executions.

Amnesty International has documented his torture to extract a forced “confession.” The international organization said an informed source told them that authorities repeatedly beat Ghobadlou, withholding his bipolar medication. A forensic report obtained by Amnesty confirms that while in custody, he sustained bruising and injuries.

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Click to play video: 'Family fears Canadian-Iranian woman detained in 2021'
Family fears Canadian-Iranian woman detained in 2021

Farid Najafi, a Vancouver resident who founded Iranian Knowledge, a nonprofit documenting political prisoners, said Ghobadlou  “was in solitary confinement. His trial was very short. They basically gave him the death sentence right away.”

Ghobadlou is one of seven protesters facing execution for taking part in recent protests threatening to topple the regime. This comes as the United Nations referred to Iran as being on an “execution spree.” The UN Human Rights chief Volker Türk said that Iran has executed more than 10 people per week on average this year.

These prisoners have been sentenced to death in Iran, according to Amnesty International. Amnesty International

“There are these daily executions happening and we don’t know who’s next,” Aldag added.


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