Iran mentioned Saturday it executed British-Iranian twin nationwide Alireza Akbari after he was sentenced to dying for spying for the UK, drawing sharp condemnation from the British authorities.
Akbari, 61, was hanged after being convicted of “corruption on earth and harming the nation’s inside and exterior safety by passing on intelligence”, the judiciary’s Mizan On-line web site mentioned. It didn’t say when or the place the execution befell.
Mizan On-line mentioned Akbari, who had been arrested greater than two years in the past, had been a spy for Britain’s MI6 secret intelligence company and had obtained round $2 million for his providers.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak mentioned he was “appalled” by the execution.
“This was a callous and cowardly act, carried out by a barbaric regime with no respect for the human rights of their very own folks,” Sunak tweeted, including his ideas had been with “Alireza’s family and friends”.
UK International Secretary James Cleverly warned on Twitter that his execution “is not going to stand unchallenged”, a press release echoed by France which condemned the execution “within the strongest phrases” and mentioned it can’t go “unanswered”.
Iran summoned the British ambassador to protest what it described as “unconventional interventions”, after the UK mentioned it will summon Tehran’s envoy.
Akbari was hanged solely hours after the US had joined its ally Britain in calling for Iran to not go forward with the execution.
US diplomat Vedant Patel mentioned on Friday that Washington had been “drastically involved” by stories that Akbari had been “drugged, tortured whereas in custody, interrogated for hundreds of hours and compelled to make false confessions”.
– ‘Compelled confession’ –
Amnesty Worldwide referred to as the execution “abhorrent”.
It tweeted that Akbari had been subjected to “torture and different ill-treatment” akin to being “forcibly administered chemical substances and being held in extended solitary confinement”.
Media shops in Iran, which doesn’t recognise twin nationality for its residents, had broadcast a video this week during which Akbari appeared to talk of his contacts with Britain.
BBC Persian on Wednesday aired an audio message it mentioned was from Akbari during which he mentioned he was tortured and compelled to admit on digital camera to crimes he didn’t commit.
“I used to be given new garments and requested to dye my hair to be launched however then I used to be taken to a movie studio and threatened with a gun to falsely confess,” a person is heard saying within the recording.
Mizan On-line, citing the intelligence ministry, mentioned Akbari had turn out to be a “key spy” for Britain’s MI6 because of “the significance of his place”.
Akbari, a veteran of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq battle, was arrested someday between March 2019 and March 2020, state media mentioned.
He was as soon as recognized by the federal government’s official Iran newspaper as a former deputy defence minister underneath Ali Shamkhani, who at present heads Iran’s Supreme Nationwide Safety Council.
Akbari had additionally been an “adviser to the commander of the navy” in addition to “heading a division on the defence ministry’s analysis centre”, state media mentioned.
– Protest crackdown –
On Saturday Mizan On-line reported that he had retired between March 2002 and March 2003, and moved to “analysis and enterprise actions within the personal sector”.
Distinguished Iranian lawyer Saeid Dehghan on Twitter mentioned the sentencing and execution of the twin nationwide was “political”.
Dehghan famous that his execution comes amid strikes within the British parliament to record Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist group over its function in a lethal crackdown on protests.
Amnesty Worldwide says Iran is the world’s most prolific consumer of the dying penalty after China.
One other twin nationwide additionally dealing with the dying penalty is Swedish-Iranian citizen Ahmadreza Djalali, who has been held since 2016 and in 2017 was sentenced to dying on espionage expenses that his household vehemently denies.
In early December, Iran executed 4 folks accused of working with Israeli intelligence, Mizan mentioned on the time.
They had been hanged 4 days after the supreme court docket upheld their dying sentences for “intelligence cooperation with the Zionist regime (Israel) and kidnapping”, Mizan reported.
The Islamic republic has been rocked by protests sparked by the September 16 dying of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd, after she was arrested for allegedly violating the nation’s strict costume code for ladies.
Eighteen folks have been sentenced to dying in reference to the protests, in accordance with a depend compiled by AFP from official bulletins.