Page last updated at 18:29 GMT, Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Five 'sentenced to death in Iran'

Opposition protester in Iran (15 June 2009)
Thousands of opposition supporters were detained at post-election protests

Five people have so far been sentenced to death and 81 have received jail terms in connection with post-election unrest in Iran, prosecutors have said.

The Tehran Justice Department said those facing the death penalty were members of "terrorist and opposition groups", state TV reported.

It was not immediately clear if they included the three people sentenced to death in October. No names were given.

The disputed presidential election in June sparked mass opposition protests.

Opposition supporters say the poll was rigged to ensure the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

At least 30 protesters have been killed in clashes since the elections. Thousands were detained and some 200 activists remain behind bars.


The statement released by prosecutors in Tehran on Tuesday was meant to "stop rumours regarding the cases of the post-election detainees", Iranian Channel 2 TV reported.

Mohammad Reza Ali Zamani in court (8 August 2009)
Mohammad Zamani was reportedly sentenced to death in October

"The legal investigations into the cases of these people took place in the presence of their lawyers. So far 89 of the detainees have been tried, 81 of whom have received jail terms differing from six months to 15 years," the statement said.

"Also, five people were sentenced to death for membership of terrorist and opposition groups. The jail sentences of three of the detainees have been suspended and three people have been acquitted," it added.

The prosecutors said a court had investigated a number of appeal requests and had issued a final verdict. Some other cases were still being investigated by the court, they added.

So far the only named opposition activist reported as having been sentenced to death over the protests is Mohammad Reza Ali Zamani.

He and one other person are believed to have been convicted for ties with the Kingdom Assembly of Iran, a banned monarchist group.

Another was given the death penalty for links with the dissident People's Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI), or or Mojahedin-e Khalq, according to officials and reformist websites.

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