Iranian trade unionist to be hanged today?

Farzad Kamangar, a teacher, trade unionist and rights activist from Iran’s Kordistan province, sentenced to death on what his attorney calls “absolutely zero evidence,” could be hanged today, his supporters say. Sources report that he has been taken from his cell at Tehran’s Evin prison in preparation for execution. Security officers at the prison are reported to have informed him that he is to be executed imminently, taunted him and called him a martyr.

Kamangar, who worked as a teacher in rural areas and promoted human rights, is accused of alleged affiliation to the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). On Feb. 25, the Tehran Revolutionary Court sentenced Kamangar to death on charges of “endangering national security” and “enmity against God” (moharebe). The death penalty was confirmed by the Supreme Court on July 11. According to his lawyer, Khalil Bahramian, there is no evidence to justify the verdict, and the trial was characterized by numerous legal irregularities.

A support committee composed of members of the Teacher Trade Association, former colleagues of Kamangar and human rights attorneys, including Nobel Prize winner Shirin Ebadi, was established in July to defend Farzad Kamangar and pressure to have his death sentence commuted. (International Transport Workers Federation, Nov. 26; Education International, Aug. 14)

Messages in support of Farzad Kamangar can be sent to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at:

See our last posts on Iran, the labor struggle and the struggle for Kurdistan.

  1. of Farzad Kamangar, an Iranian Kurdish teacher and trade unionis
    Iranian teacher unionist still alive, but remains at risk
    UNI Global Union, Switzerland – 2 hours ago {that is, 7:51 am EST]

    Teachers, trade unionists and human rights defenders around the world are mobilising in defence of Farzad Kamangar, an Iranian Kurdish teacher and trade …

  2. Save the life of Iranian trade unionist
    From Education International, Jan. 16:

    President Ahmadinejad,

    I am writing to you on behalf of Education International (EI) to deplore the confirmation of the death sentence of teacher trade unionist, Farzad Kamangar. I support the campaigns of the Iranian Teachers’ Association and of EI to have his case re-examined through a fair trial that meets Iranian and international standards. I also urge the authorities to immediately commute Farzad Kamangar’s death sentence.

    According to Mr Kamangar’s lawyer, there is no evidence to justify that he has “endangered national security” or is “Mohareb” (at enmity with God). I also deplore that Iranian trade union colleagues and human rights activists who show solidarity with Farzad are being subjected to pervasive intimidation by the Iranian authorities.

    The harassment, detention and condemnation of trade unionists because of their legitimate human and trade union activities are not only serious violations of trade union rights, but also create an atmosphere of fear prejudicial to trade union development in Iran.

    In addition, I deplore that Mr Kamangar has been tortured while in detention and was denied medical treatment. I urge the Iranian authorities to investigate into the reports of torture and to ensure that, in future, no detainee is tortured or ill-treated.

    I look forward to hearing about your positive intervention in this regard.

    Yours sincerely


    His Excellency Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, President
    Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection
    Islamic Republic of Iran