Iran tries five people over Ashura unrest

It was the first trial reported by Iranian media of people arrested over the unrest on Ashura, the day of ritual Shi'ite Muslim mourning that fell on Dec. 27.

Iran tries five people over Ashura unrest

Five people detained in connection with violent anti-government protests during Ashura day in Iran last month went on trial on Monday on charges that may be punishable by the death penalty, Iranian media reported.

The five people in the dock were not identified, but the official news agency IRNA said earlier they were members of the armed People's Mujahideen Organisation of Iran (PMOI), an exile group opposed to the Islamic system of government.

They were accused of "moharebeh" -- an Islamic term meaning waging war against God -- which carries the death sentence, ISNA news agency said.

It was the first trial reported by Iranian media of people arrested over the unrest on Ashura, the day of ritual Shi'ite Muslim mourning that fell on Dec. 27.

Eight people were killed in clashes between security forces and opposition supporters.

The opposition website Rahesabz said earlier this month more than 180 people, including 17 journalists, 10 Mousavi aides and some members of the outlawed Baha'i faith were arrested after the December demonstrations.

"The trial of the five detainees from Ashura day, under the charge of moharebeh, began at the Tehran Islamic Revolution Court," ISNA reported.

Tehran chief prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi told IRNA the charges included setting fire to public property and other anti-government activities.

"One of the punishments of moharebeh is execution and it will have to be determined by the presiding judge," he said.


Reuters

Last Mod: 18 Ocak 2010, 12:42
Add Comment