Iran isn't known for its human rights pleasantries, which is why most people aren't surprised over media reports that 11 Iranian criminals were hanged yesterday. The real story, though, is embedded in the details surrounding how one of the criminals met his demise. In a move that is startlingly bizarre to any civil society, Iranian officials purportedly allowed a young boy to perform one of the hangings.
Iran Human Rights has this to say about the alleged incident:
According to our reports a young boy was used to draw the chair Mehdi was standing on and carry out the execution....
Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, the spokesperson of Iran Human Rights strongly condemned today’s execution and said : "These barbaric executions and using ordinary citizens, especially the minors to carry out these executions must be condemned by the world community". He added : "Iranian leaders must be held accountable for promoting a culture of murder and brutality in Iran".
A photo from the hanging (below) appears to show the boy pushing the chair out from under Mehdi:
Mediaite, though, cautions readers that the photo showing the boy could be doctored:
While Iran’s official news agency has confirmed the hangings of the 11 people including Faraji, it is unclear if the photo of the boy is real. We certainly hope it turns out to be fake. Many official photos exist of Faraji’s hanging, all taken after his death. None of them show the boy in question.
Iran's insanely strict and murderous legal system is rather horrifying. While some of the individuals who were hanged were guilty of drug trafficking, robberies and the like, only one individual was found guilty of murder (this is the man shown in the picture above).
Regardless of the gravity of their crimes, these 11 people were given what would be considered a maximum punishment here in the United States (though we've obviously developed more humane methods of terminating the lives of murderous criminals). Even more bizarre is the fact that four of these executions were performed in public.
But, so the story goes in Iran.