Despite being acquitted of his charges, Abbas-Gholi Salehi, aged 42, was executed last Wednesday by the Iranian regime at Dastgerd prison in Isfahan just a day after an immediate court ruling sentenced him to death following a 20-year prison sentence.
Salehi’s family were informed of his pending execution following the ruling on Tuesday and that evening, a large group of local people gathered outside of the prison to call for the sentence to be revoked. His family was warned by regime authorities to remain silent, who threatened to bring about false charges against Salehi’s brother who is currently imprisoned.
In order to create a sense of fear among the public, the Iranian regime is known to randomly execute ordinary prisoners. Numerous accounts have highlighted that regime authorities often torture prisoners and force them to confess to crimes that they haven’t committed.
Contrary to the regime’s desire, however, Salehi’s execution was met not with fear but with public outrage. On Thursday, a large group of people in Yazdanshahr, Isfahan province, gathered to commemorate Salehi while singing songs and chanting slogans about revenge.
In fear of the situation, the regime, a few hours after Abbas-Gholi Salehi’s execution, arrested his brother, and his father was asked to disperse people from the front of the prison and told them that whatever happens next, they will be guilty.
The regime’s officials forced his family to execute the funeral on the same day. However, due to resistance from Abbasgholi Salehi’s family and locals, the ceremony was held on Thursday with the participation of a large number of Yazdanshahr people in Isfahan.
In this regard, a resident of Yazdanshahr said:
‘The ceremony was traditionally held in a march and mourning ceremony. Despite the regime’s threats, the people participated in a large scale that showed another view of dissatisfaction with the regime.’
With the social and economic crises faced by Iranian citizens at the moment, it is no wonder that they are becoming increasingly restive. The impending threat of another nationwide uprising has the regime worried, and they have been trying a number of tactics to try and quell the outrage and keep the population in check, from beating and humiliating youths in the streets to the executions of political and ordinary prisoners.
The regime’s eagerness to quell any potential uprisings is not surprising, considering the members of the new government cabinet, including the regime’s new president Ebrahim Raisi, who is responsible for a number of crimes against humanity. The regime’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, has had a hand in appointing ministers with appalling criminal histories to high positions of power within the regime in order for him to maintain a firm grip on controlling the public unrest.
The Speaker of the Majlis (parliament), Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf, was formerly a commander under the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) who have been highly involved in cracking down on protesters in recent years. Another official, the Chief of Judiciary, Gholam-Hossein Mohseni Ejei is currently blacklisted for his past human rights violations towards protesters and political dissidents.
The execution of Salehi is the latest manifestation of the regime’s desperation to maintain control over an 80-million strong population that no longer wants it.
Salehi’s execution in Isfahan after 20 years shows the cruelty of the clerical regime that cannot continue its rule for even one a day without torture and executions.
It appears, however, that the regime’s method of repressing society’s outrage is becoming less effective considering the rallies that took place before and after Salehi’s execution, with protesters standing their ground and calling the regime out on their wrongdoings.
Just last week, a large group of people from Ilam held a demonstration outside of Fashafuyeh prison in Tehran to protest the murder of youth from their province who had been killed at the prison under torture.
The people of Iran, who have nothing to lose but their miseries under the rule of the mullahs, are no longer afraid of the regime and its brutal security forces. And every single execution adds to their ire and outrage and their desire to topple this regime.