Also available in العربية
October 21, 2020
Navid Afkari, a 27 year-old Iranian wrestling champion who won numerous medals, had rarely lost a fight in his life. There was, however, one struggle he could not win. Following torture and a forced confession, Navid was executed earlier this month following a verdict by the Iranian Supreme Court.
Navid Afkari, along with his two brothers Vahid and Habib, were found guilty of participating in the nationwide protest that engulfed Iran in August 2018, along with several other charges that included insulting the supreme leader, waging war against God, and murder. Vahid and Habib were handed prison sentences of 54 years and 27 years respectively. Both were also sentenced to 74 lashes and are still behind bars.
Navid’s execution demonstrates that Iran’s decision earlier this year to commute the execution sentence of three young men represented an exception rather than a potential shift inside the country. Iran had halted the executions of three young protestors—Amirhossein Moradi, Mohammad Rajabi, and Saeed Tamjidi—under the pressure of an online campaign that attracted millions of tweets and a hashtag protesting their sentence.Continue reading