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HRW Calls On Iran To Stop Executing Child Offenders

Twenty-two-year-old Ali Kazemi was put to death in Iran on January 30.
Twenty-two-year-old Ali Kazemi was put to death in Iran on January 30.

Human Rights Watch has called on Iran to stop executing child offenders after three people were put to death in January for crimes they committed as minors.

In a February 7 statement, the New York-based rights group said "Iran should immediately and unconditionally end the use of the death penalty for crimes committed by children under age 18, and move toward a complete ban on capital punishment.”

The statement detailed the executions of three Iranian detainees in January.

Amirhossein Pourjafar, aged 18 when he was executed on January 4 in Karaj prison near Tehran, had been sentenced to death on charges that he raped and murdered a 3-year-old girl when he was 16.

The execution of 22-year old Ali Kazemi occurred on January 30 – seven years after he was convicted of fatally stabbed a man dead in a street fight at the age of 15.

Iranian authorities also executed 20-year-old Mahboubeh Mofidi on January 30.

Mofidi -- a child bride at the age of 13 -- was convicted of murdering her husband when she was 17 years old.

Human Rights Watch said Iran is “one of only four countries known to have executed child offenders since 2013.”

It said other countries that have done so include Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen.

Amnesty International says at least 90 people have been executed in Iran since 2005 for crimes committed when they were minors.

With reporting by AFP