Following reports on the imminent execution of the young Iranian Salar Shadizadi, the Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, Christoph Strässer, issued the following statement today (31 July):
I am extremely concerned about the imminent execution of the young Iranian Salar Shadizadi scheduled for 1 August.
Salar Shadizadi was only 15 years old at the time of the crime he is accused of having committed. Nevertheless, his death sentence was upheld in the appeal proceedings.
Not only the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, but also the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – both of which Iran has ratified – prohibit the execution of anyone who was a minor at the time of the offence.
Should Iran execute Salar Shadizadi, it would be committing a totally unacceptable violation of international law. I therefore call on the authorities in Iran to halt the execution immediately, overturn the death sentence and grant Salar Shadizadi a fair retrial!
Salar Shadizadi was arrested in February 2007 and sentenced to death in December 2007 for the murder of a friend, who was allegedly found stabbed to death in the Shadizadi family’s garden. The execution, which was originally scheduled to take place in July 2013, was halted and a judicial review was granted, following criminal law reform in Iran. After conducting the judicial review, the Supreme Court upheld the sentence.