Iran’s regime executed 694 people between January 1st and July 15th 2015, according to a report released by Amnesty International this week, marking an “unprecedented” surge in the use of the death penalty in the country.
The Amnesty report noted that Iran was soon to surpass the total number of executions carried out in the whole of 2014, and that by the end of this year the total number could reach 1,000.
Iran currently leads the world in executions per capita, and is second only to China. The country’s geopolitical rival, Saudi Arabia, has also had a surge in executions in 2015, surpassing its figure for last year (89) by May.
Amnesty’s figures contradict the Iranian regimes official figures, which put the number at 246. However, Amnesty says that “many more judicial executions are carried out but not acknowledged” and that its own figures were confirmed by credible reports.
Said Boumedouha, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Programme said: “The Iranian authorities should be ashamed of executing hundreds of people with complete disregard for the basic safeguards of due process. The use of the death penalty is always abhorrent, but it raises additional concerns in a country like Iran where trials are blatantly unfair”.
The number of executions since President Rouhani took office in August 2013 has soared, particularly since the beginning of 2014.