Iranians Charged With Death Penalty Must Be Allowed Access To Lawyers

Target: Morteza Bakhtiari, Minister of Justice.

Goal: To get Iranian officials to allow detainees access to their family and lawyers.

Iranian officials have imprisoned at least 20 detainees charged with terrorism without access to their lawyers and family members. They are implicated in the killings of a number of scientists connected to the Iranian nuclear program. The judiciary in Iran has not provided basic information about these cases despite the fact that the charges can result in the death penalty. Family members of those imprisoned have stated to human rights organizations that the inmates have not been allowed to see them or their lawyers.

Family members have not even been told where the prisoners are being held though it is believed they are in Tehran. The only information released publically were announcements last year from the Intelligence Ministry that stated that more than a dozen people were arrested in connection with the murders of nuclear scientists. In addition, televised confessions of 12 of the detainees were aired in August of last year.

The 20 men were allegedly involved in the murder of Majid Shahriari, a nuclear physicist, and Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan, who reportedly acted as a supervisor at a uranium enrichment facility. The imprisoned men have also been connected to a car bomb attack that seriously wounded another nuclear scientist. These attacks are just a few of the many assasinations of members of Iran’s nuclear program in the last few years.

While there is no evidence that the imprisoned men have been tortured, there are numerous cases in which Iranian officials and security agents extracted forced confessions through the use of torture. Available information states that the Iranian judicial system has not offered the men any of the legal options that are outlined in the legal code of Iran. Sign this petition and demand that Iran immediately end the detention of these twenty men and allow them fair legal recourse.


Dear Minister Morteza Bakhtiari,

The twenty men currently charged with the murders of scientists in Iran must be allowed contact with their family members and with lawyers. The laws of your country state that the prolonged detention of these men without access to lawyers is unlawful. They must be allowed to defend themselves properly if they are to face the death penalty.

I ask that you improve the human rights image of your country by allowing these men the fair trial that is called for by your judicial system. Doing so will also respect the lives of the men who were killed.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Miss Piggy via Pixabay

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