Following reports of the execution of Iranian Arman Abdolali, who was a minor at the time of the crime, the Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Assistance at the Federal Foreign Office, Bärbel Kofler, issued the following statement today (24 November):
I am shocked by the execution of Arman Abdolali, who was a minor at the time of the crime he was alleged to have committed. The death penalty is an inhumane form of punishment which the Federal Government rejects under all circumstances. Iran has ratified both the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Both prohibit the execution of minors and people who are minors at the time of the crime. There are also serious doubts as to whether due process standards were complied with in the proceedings against Arman Abdolali.
I urgently appeal to those responsible in Iran to immediately stop carrying out death sentences and to refrain as a matter of principle from imposing them.
Arman Abdolali, now aged 24, was sentenced to death in 2013 for the murder of his girlfriend. The body has never been found. He initially confessed to the crime, but later retracted his confession. He said that he had spent 76 days in solitary confinement following his arrest and that the confession had been made under torture. The execution was postponed several times. In October, the Human Rights Commissioner appealed to Iran to suspend enforcement and to give Arman Abdolali the chance of a new, fair trial.