Iran Regime’s Vicious Suppression of Protesters

Iran, protest in 2018, archive image
Iran, protest in 2018, archive image

By Pooya Stone

The Iranian regime is attempting to stop any dissent by imposing heavy sentences on protesters, warning in state media that nationwide protests, bigger than was ever seen before, are coming, which is why they must punish peaceful protesters with long prison terms, floggings, and even executions.

Human rights activists, eyewitnesses, and former detainees report that arrested protesters are routine:

  • Harassed
  • Tortured
  • Beaten
  • Flogged
  • Given electric shocks
  • Suspended from the ceiling
  • Mock executions
  • Waterboarded
  • Sexually abused
  • Denied medical care
  • Prevented from contacting their families or lawyers
  • Interrogated in solitary confinement

Iran Human Rights Monitor produced a brief report on the abuses levied at protesters, including children, who merely exercised their right to freedom of expression.


Two protesters were recently executed: Mostafa Salehi, 33 and a father-of-two, and Navid Afkari Sangari, 27, and a champion wrestler. They were killed for taking part in protests, no matter what bogus charge they were tortured into confessing to.

But there are ten more protesters on death row, including Amir Hossein Moradi, Saeed Tamjidi, Mohammad Rajabi, Mohammad Keshvari, Hossein Reyhani, Hadi Kiani, Mehdi Salehi Qaleh Shahrokhi, Mohammad Bastami, Majid Nazari Kondari, and Abbas Mohammadi.


In the past year alone, the regime has handed down 28 flogging sentences to protesters, numbering 1270 blows in total.

This included:

  • Vahid and Habib Afkari Sangari, who was sentenced to 74 lashes each and long prison terms
  • Ali Azizi and Aliyar Hosseinzadeh flogged on June 8
  • Moradi, Tamjidi, and Rajabi sentenced to 222 lashes in total as well as their death sentences
  • Morteza Omidbiglou who was given 222 lashes along with a long prison term and forced labor
  • Mohammad Eghbali Golhin sentenced to 74 lashes, 11 years in prison, and one year in exile
  • Fatemeh Kohanzadeh, sentenced to 50 lashes, prison, and forced labor
  • Keyvan Pashaei, Ali Azizi, Amin Zare, Salar Taher Afshar, Aliyar Hosseinzadeh, and Yasin Hassanpour, sentenced to 20 lashes, eight months in prison, and a 15 million rials fine each

Iran Human Rights Monitor said: “[We] call on the international community, and in particular human rights organizations, to strongly condemn the killing and execution of protesters by the Iranian regime. The UN Security Council must place the dire human rights situation in Iran on its agenda and send an international delegation to visit the prisons in Iran. They must meet with the prisoners, especially those arrested during the November 2019 uprising.”

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