Human rights organizations have reported that Iran hanged 17-year-old Hamidreza Azari after accusing him of murder.

The execution happened on Friday at the prison of Sabzevar, which is located in the province of Khorasan-e Razavi. Several human rights organizations have expressed concern and condemned this incident.

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Who was Hamidreza Azari?

Hamidreza Azari was 17 years old. According to rights organizations, Hamidreza Azari killed a man in a brawl in May when he was 16 years old. Iran considers this execution to be a fresh breach of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that a child is any individual under the age of 18.

Hamidreza Azari was put to death on Friday in the Sabzevar prison, which is situated in the province of Razavi Khorasan’s eastern town. This information was obtained from Hengaw, based in Norway, and Iran Human Rights (IHR). 

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Iran International, a Persian-language satellite TV channel, verified the execution as well and noted that Azari had been working as a scrap worker for a number of years, having begun at a young age, despite being the only child in his family.

Iran Human Rights (IHR) notes that Iran is one of the few nations that executes and sentences minors under the age of eighteen. This practice has drawn criticism. Based on data from IHR, Iran has carried out at least 68 executions of minors since 2010.

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Mahmood-Amiry Moghaddam, the group’s director, drew attention to the inconsistency in Iran’s age laws, pointing out that although a person must be 18 years old to obtain a driver’s license, they can be executed at the age of 15.

When Hamidreza A. was first executed, Iranian media falsely reported that he was 18 years old in a “deliberate attempt to evade accountability for violating international laws.” This falsehood is consistent with the wider critique of Iran’s execution policy, which involves carrying out the death penalty for people who were underage at the time of their alleged crimes.