“If we were silent until now, it was in the hope that justice would be served (through Iran’s legal system). But from here on, my family and I need help. I’m not only addressing Iranians. I’m addressing any person out there who believes in humanity and is honorable. Your silence means you’re supporting the oppressors and oppression. It means supporting the execution of an innocent person. An innocent person by the name of Navid Afkari is getting closer to the noose Because of the ruling of courts in the Islamic Republic of Iran. And if they succeed in silencing him and if he is abandoned, they will take his life as if nothing has happened. I’m now asking any freedom-loving person, regardless of their beliefs, to be my voice and that of my family. Because having honor and humanity has no meaning if you don’t stand up for what’s right and for justice. If I’m executed, everyone should know that in the 21st century, despite all the funding and all the humanitarian organizations like the UN and Security Council, an innocent person was executed even though he did all he could to fight and have his voice heard. You should know that if I am executed, the only logical conclusion is that this was not the first innocent victim of the injustice of this so-called justice system. We tried all the methods we knew of to let them know that they were killing an innocent person. But what we didn’t know was that my family and I were puppets in a show created by judges and courts from the first day of our arrests. And now, I don’t have a platform (to speak from) or any money (to buy my way out). Our only power lies in the energy and the voices of freedom-loving people who are against injustice.”
How many young protestors and advocates against the Iranian government have been wrongfully executed? Olympic athlete and Champion Wrestler Navid Afkari were wrongfully imprisoned and sentenced to death by the Iranian government. Navid and his brothers Vahid and Habib were all charged with participation in illegal demonstrations, insulting Iran’s supreme leader, robbery, “enmity against God,” and murder. All three brothers were tortured into confessing to murder. The torture that Afkari was forced to endure includes “beatings on his legs, hands, and abdomen with a baton or a stick, pouring alcohol in his nose, and pulling a plastic bag over his head to the point of suffocation.” Torturing someone into confessing is not a true admission of guilt. How can one believe that any sort of justice can occur when government officials can freely suffocate prisoners?
The regime knows no boundaries, with reportedly children as fourteen being killed by the government during the “Bloody November” protests. Perhaps the most frightening part of the story of Navid Afkari is that there are so many stories JUST like his. Young, talented, and fearless leaders dying at the hands of the Iranian government. When people have nothing and feel like they have nothing to lose, they will do anything. Can you imagine how it must feel to be so desperate for freedom, you would risk your life for it? And not the so-called notion of freedom orchestrated by American culture, not the red-white stripes or football games, but the freedom to exist without fear. The freedom to live an authentic life without worrying about government spies throwing you into unmarked cars into one of the most inhumane prisons of all time, and without fearing that if the government will torture and hang an olympian with an international social media campaign advocating for his release, surely they will kill you too? And your brothers, sisters, cousins, as your mother watches and the world stands silent. The Iranian people bleed just as those across the globe do, and the streets of Iran remain stained with the blood of …
Mohammad Koroshat Mesiam Ecresh Farzad Farisat
Hadi Bahmani Neda Agha-Soltan
Narges Mohammadi Atena Daemi
Saba Kord Afshari Masih Alinejad Alireza Alinejad
And all the other brave Iranian activists and protestors alike that remain in prison, exile, disappeared or in unmarked graves across Iran. We remember them and honor them always, until Iran is free.