Iran executes two post-election “rioters”

Tehran— Iran hanged two men on Thursday who had been detained during post-election protests and convicted of being Mohareb (enemies of God) and members of a monarchist group, the ISNA news agency reported.

They are the first hangings reported of people detained during the wave of protests that followed hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s disputed June 12 re-election.

"Mohammad Reza Ali Zamani and Arash Rahmani Pour whose cases were confirmed by a Tehran appeals court were hanged on Thursday morning," ISNA said quoting a statement from the Tehran prosecutor’s office.

The pair were also charged with plotting to topple the Islamic regime, the news agency added.

Rahmani Pour’s lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh denied that her client had any role in the post-election riots.

"He was arrested in Farvardin (the Iranian month covering March-April) before the (presidential) election and charged with cooperation with the (monarchist) Kingdom Assembly," Sotoudeh told AFP.

Independent media reports suggested that Zamani and Rahmani Pour were hanged for their alleged role in the deadly April 2008 bombing of a mosque in the southern Iranian city of Shiraz which killed 13 people and left 200 wounded

Sotudeh said that Rahmani Pour was arrested at the age of 19.

Sotoudeh said she was prevented from representing Rahmani Pour at his "show trial" in July and that many of the charges related to the time when he was a minor.

"He confessed because of threats against his family," she said, adding that she was shocked at the news of the executions since she and her client’s family had still been waiting for word from the appeals court.

The prosection statement said nine other detained protesters faced similar charges.

"Nine others among the recent months’ rioters are still in the appeal phase and, if they are convicted, then based on the law their sentence will be carried," it said.

Iranian authorities arrested around 4,000 protesters including journalists and reformist politicians in a massive crackdown in the weeks after the disputed election.

Five people have been sentenced to death according to the authorities. Others have received stiff jail terms although some have been released on bail pending possible appeals.

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