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Rights group urges EU to pressure Iran to stop execution

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Iran Focus: London, May 13 – A Tehran-based human rights group has called on the European Union to pressure Iran to suspend the imminent execution of a long-time political prisoner. Iran Focus

London, May 13 – A Tehran-based human rights group has called on the European Union to pressure Iran to suspend the imminent execution of a long-time political prisoner.

In a letter to the Austrian embassy in Tehran, a copy of which was emailed to Iran Focus, the group calling itself Human Rights Activists in Iran said that the lives of seven political prisoners were in danger after they were issued death sentences. Austria currently holds the EU’s rotating Presidency.

The letter highlighted the case of Valiollah Feyz-Mahdavi, a 28-year-old member of Iran’s main opposition group, the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI).

Feyz-Mahdavi was arrested in 2001 for sympathising with the PMOI and has endured torture in Gohardasht Prison in Karaj, west of Tehran.

“In the last measure of the mullahs’ regime, prisoner Vali Ollah Feiz Mahdavi, was forced to sign the commandment to his execution in Gohar Dasht Prison in Karaj, which was put into place by the Judgment Enforcement of the Court of Justice and brought to him by Ali Mohammadi, the director of the Gohar Dasht, Karaj Prison”, the group said, adding that Feyz-Mahdavi had been scheduled to be executed on May 15.

The group called on the EU Presidency to refer the case to the European Parliament so that pressure could be put on Tehran to prevent the execution.

The international human rights organisation Amnesty International had expressed concern earlier this year at Feyz-Mahdavi’s sentence.

In April, Former Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik appealed to the Iranian government not to go ahead as planned with the execution.

Bondevik, who heads the Oslo Center for Peace and Human Rights, said that Feyz-Mahdavi was believed to be at “imminent danger” of execution.

His execution would be the second such known political execution in 2006. Another PMOI member, Hojjat Zamani, a political prisoner in Iran since 2001, was hanged in Gohardasht Prison on February 7. The regime applied severe psychological torture on Zamani, 31, to break his morale and compel him to express remorse and surrender.

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