Iran: Torture survivor Saman Naseem must be given a fair trial

Saman Naseem was sentenced to death after he had been tortured into confessing to shooting a soldier when he was 17. Help ensure he gets a fair retrial.

Saman Naseem, a member of Iran’s Kurdish minority, was captured after a gun battle in northwest Iran which led to the death of a Revolutionary Guard, a kind of government soldier. He was, he says, blindfolded, hung upside-down and tortured into confessing to a crime he did not commit. He was just 17 years old.

Saman’s treatment has been grossly unfair. The courts used his “confession” as evidence against him, refusing to believe or investigate his allegation that it had been forced out of him. He was even made to confess on state television.

In spite of the fact that Iran has signed up to an international ban on executing minors, Saman was sentenced to death in April 2013 for “enmity against God” and “corruption on earth”, “crimes” that simply wouldn’t stand up under international law.

However, there is hope. Huge campaigning efforts have secured Saman a retrial, and now continuing global pressure can prevent a repeat of his sentence.

Help Saman get a fair trial, where forced confessions and the death penalty have no place.

To Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani, Head of the Judiciary

Kurdish juvenile offender Saman Naseem was sentenced to death in 2013 for alleged crimes committed when he was 17 years old. His trial used as evidence ‘confessions’ which he says were obtained through torture and other ill-treatment.

I welcome the news that Saman Naseem has now been granted a judicial review. I call on you to ensure that:

  • The retrial is conducted fairly and in line with Iran’s international obligations which absolutely prohibit the use of death penalty against people convicted of crimes committed when under the age of 18.
  • ‘Confessions’ obtained under torture and other ill-treatment are not used as evidence in court to determine guilt.
  • Saman Naseem is granted access to his lawyer, his family and any medical attention he may require.

 

 

 

 

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