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What is known about the possible execution of Amir Nasr-Azadani, the Iranian soccer player who is the protagonist of a wave of solidarity in networks

Iranian professional footballer Amir Nasr-Azadani26, faces possible execution after taking part in protests for women’s rights in her country.

He is accused of being a member of an armed group responsible for the murder of 3 security agents on November 16 in the city of Isfahan (central Iran), the BBC Persian Service reported.

Sight: An Iranian footballer is sentenced to death by the regime for participating in the protests

Officials have claimed that he confessed to the crime and that they have CCTV recordings and other evidence against him and his co-defendants, 9 people in all.

“However, the judiciary has denied that he has been sentenced to death. They say he is formally charged with serious criminal activity, including murder (meaning he faces the death penalty), but stress that the trial itself It has not yet been held,” they explain from the BBC’s Persian Service.

His possible death sentence sparked an entire campaign on social media calling for his release.

Shakira took advantage of the World Cup final last Sunday to draw attention to the arrest of Nasr-Azadani.

“Today, in the World Cup final, I just hope that the players on the field and the whole world remember that there is a man and fellow footballer named Amir Nasr, sentenced to death, just for speaking out for women’s rights.” wrote the famous Colombian singer on her Twitter account.

This tweet joins that of numerous personalities, athletes and celebrities from around the world who have been asking for his possible execution to be stopped for days.

“Are we going to stay with our arms crossed and look the other way? You can’t accept something like that, in no way. Everyone with Amir Nasr-Azadani and with all the people who go through and have gone through something like this. ENOUGH. STOP”, wrote the Spanish soccer player Marc Bartra on Twitter.

“This is unacceptable. Everyone with Amir Nasr-Azadani”, wrote the Colombian soccer player Radamel Falcao.

Meanwhile, the global union of professional footballers FIFPRO wrote that it was “shocked and disgusted by the news that professional footballer Amir Nasr-Azadani faces execution in Iran after campaigning for women’s rights and fundamental freedoms in his country.” ”.

“We stand in solidarity with Amir and call for his punishment to be annulled immediately.”

Who is Amir Nasr-Azadani?

Nasr-Azadani was born in February 1996 in Isfahan, in central Iran.

He began his football career in the Sepahan Sport Club team from Isfahan, which plays in the Iran Pro League, currently known as the Persian Gulf Cup, the highest category of professional football in Iran.

In 2014 he joined the ranks of the Tehran Rah-Ahan team, one of the oldest clubs in Iran and which currently plays in the Azadegan League, the second most important in the country.

A year later, he joined the Tractor Sports Club, from the city of Tabriz, in northwestern Iran, where he stayed until 2019.

Later, he became part of the Gol Reyhan Alborz team.

Arrest of Azadani

Amir Nasr-Azadani faces a possible sentence of execution once his trial is completed.

The Islamic Republic’s judicial system could hang him for an offense called “moharebeh.”

On November 17, 2022, the Death of Colonel Esmaeil Cheraghi during protests across the country.

Three days later, on November 20, the state broadcaster IRIB broadcast a video containing the forced confessions of three people who claimed to have participated in Cheraghi’s murder.

Following the video, authorities later released the name of Iranian player Amir Nasr-Azadani as one of the suspects, along with Saleh Mirhashmi and Saeed Yaghoubi.

Local sources claimed that Azadani had participated in the protests, but that his involvement in the killing of the army officer was a lie because he was not in the area where the man was killed.

“Hate Against God”

In recent weeks, Iran has already carried out two executions linked to anti-government protests of recent months in which citizens have rebelled against the regime of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.

Protests against Iran’s clerical establishment, led by women, erupted after the death in custody of Mahsa Aminia 22-year-old girl who was arrested by the so-called morality police on September 13 for allegedly wearing her hijab, or veil, poorly.

The demonstrations spread to 161 cities in all 31 provinces of the country and are considered one of the most serious challenges against the Islamic Republic since the 1979 revolution. REUTERS

In this context, the Iranian soccer team recently refused to sing the national anthem during the opening match of the World Cup in Qatar against England.

The leaders of Iran have branded the protests “riots” instigated by foreign enemies of the country. However, an overwhelming majority of the protesters have been unarmed and peaceful.

At least 26 people are currently “at grave risk of execution in connection with the nationwide protests, after the Iranian authorities arbitrarily executed two people after grossly unfair mock trials in an attempt to instill fear among the public and end the protests.” protests,” Amnesty International wrote in a statement.

Of those 26 people, at least 11 are on death row and 15 are accused of capital offenses and awaiting or undergoing trial, the organization said.

Who were the first executed?

The authorities publicly hanged Majesty Rahnavard23, in the early hours of Monday, December 12, in the city of Mashhad, the judiciary announced.

A court convicted him of “hatred against God” after finding him guilty of stabbing to death two members of the paramilitary Basij Resistance Force.

rahnavard he was executed just 23 days after his arrest “in the presence of a group of Mashhadi citizens”.

In a video broadcast on state television on November 19, after his arrest, Rahnavard is seen blindfolded and his left arm in a cast.

In the video, he said he did not deny attacking the Basij members, but that he could not remember the details because he was not in the right state of mind.

State TV also showed on the 12th of this month what it described as his subsequent “confession” before the Revolutionary Court.

The highest Iranian authorities, starting with Atayola Ali Khamenei, have assured that the protests are instigated from abroad.  REUTERS

The highest Iranian authorities, starting with Atayola Ali Khamenei, have assured that the protests are instigated from abroad. REUTERS

Activists point out that state media routinely broadcast the false confessions of detainees who have been forced through torture and other cruel treatment.

While, the first execution of a protester happened on December 8generating international condemnation.

It was about Mohsen Shekari23, who was also convicted of “hatred against God” after being found guilty of attacking a Basij member with a machete in Tehran.

The Mizan news agency said earlier that he had been accused of stabbing two Basij members to death on a street in Mashad on November 17.

The Basij group is a volunteer force that is often deployed by the Iranian authorities to suppress dissent.

Human rights organizations have warned that protesters are being sentenced to death in illegitimate courts without due process.

Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, director of the Norway-based Iran Human Rights organization, tweeted that Rahnavard’s sentence was based on “forced confessions, after an extremely unfair trial and show trial.”

Source: Elcomercio

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