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Javid Dehghan
Amnesty International alleged Dehghan's trial was 'grossly unfair'Image: hra

Iran hangs ethnic Baluch for 'terrorist links'

January 30, 2021

Javid Dehghan was arrested in 2015 and later convicted of being one of the leaders of the Pakistan-based Jaish al-Adl militant group, which has been involved in several violent attacks in Iran.


Iranian authorities on Saturday hanged Javid Dehghan Khalad, a suspected terrorist, for murder, abduction and links to the Sunni militant Jaish al-Adl (Army of Justice) group, according to the Iranian judiciary's website.

Dehghan was put to death early in the morning in the restive southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan, the local Mizan Online news agency reported.

Dehghan, also knows as Mohammad Omar, had been found guilty of carrying out "armed action against the state," the website said. He was also found to have been involved in the killing of two Revolutionary Guards' members in 2015, as well as leading a raid to abduct five border guards, one of whom was killed, it added.

Who is Jaish al-Adl?

Pakistan-based militant group Jaish al-Adl has been involved in a number of deadly attacks on the Shiite country's soldiers and installations in the past few years, including the February 2019 suicide attack that killed 27 Iranian security forces along the Iran-Pakistan border.

Jaish al-Adl has been targeting Iranian soldiers for many years
Jaish al-Adl has been targeting Iranian soldiers for many yearsImage: irinn.ir

The group previously claimed responsibility for attacks that killed border guards in 2013 and 2015.

Jaish al-Adl is a Sunni militant group, which is fighting against what it says is discrimination against Sunni Muslims and ethnic Baluch in the Iranian province of Sistan-Baluchestan.

The region is known as home to drug smugglers, as well as Sunni militants, both of whom regularly clash with Iranian security forces.

In July 2019, former US President Donald Trump's administration designated Jaish al-Adl as a global terrorist organization.

The militant group was formed in 2012 as a successor to another Sunni extremist group Jundallah (Soldiers of God), which had waged a deadly insurgency in Iran for a decade before it was severely weakened by the capture and execution of its leader Abdolmalek Rigi in 2010.

Iran shares a 1,000-kilometer-long border with Pakistan
Iran shares a 1,000-kilometer-long border with PakistanImage: Getty Images/AFP

International appeals to halt execution

Iran hanged Dehghan despite international calls for the execution of the ethnic Baluch to be halted.

"We urge the authorities to halt the imminent execution of Javid Dehghan, to review his and other death penalty cases in line with human rights law," the Geneva-based Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights wrote on Twitter on Friday.

"We strongly condemn the series of executions – at least 28 – since mid-December, including of people from minority groups," it added.

London-based rights group Amnesty International alleged Dehghan's trial was "grossly unfair" with the court relying on "torture-tainted confessions."

shs/mm (Reuters, AFP)

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