By Biodun Busari
Iran’s government has executed two men after being convicted of killing a member of the paramilitary Basij force during protests that had rocked the Arab country.
Iran condemned the two protesters – Mohammad Mehdi Karami and Mohammad Hosseini for killing Ruhollah Ajamian, a paramilitary officer, during a demonstration to mark the 40th day since the death of a protester Hadis Najafi last year.
Al Jazeera reported that the duo were hanged in the early hours of Saturday, days after the Iranian Supreme Court confirmed their sentences for “corruption on Earth.”
Karami and Hosseini were accused of killing Ajamian on November 3 when large protests took place in the city of Karaj near Tehran.
Videos circulating on social media on the day showed a main highway closed off by crowds and Ajamian, wearing a Basij uniform, lying motionless on the ground.
According to the judiciary, 16 people were arrested in connection with his death, while Karami and Hosseini were the main suspects.
The judiciary showed clips from their court sessions, where Karami said he struck Ajamian with a rock and Hosseini told a judge he stabbed him with a knife several times.
Saturday’s hangings bring the total number of executions over the protests to four. The latest executions come amid allegations that the confessions were forced.
According to the report, an audio clip circulating online revealed a man said to be the 22-year-old Karami’s father, saying his son was innocent.
In counteraction, the judiciary rejected the claims and released clips of interviews with supposed witnesses to Ajamian’s killing.
Protests have persisted in Iran a day after the death of a 22-year-old Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, who died in the custody of police on September 16.
Amini was arrested and detained by morality police for flouting women’s dress code in the country.