Iranian Footballer Facing Execution

Iranian footballer, Amir Nasr-Azadani is facing execution in his home country after campaigning for women’s rights amid anti-government protests following death of Mahsa Amini

There have been anti-government protests in Iran which was sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died in custody in September having been detained for allegedly failing to follow the country’s Islamic dress code.

Speaking on the situation, players’ union FIFPRO said on Monday December 12: ‘FIFPRO is shocked and sickened by reports that professional footballer Amir Nasr-Azadani faces execution in Iran after campaigning for women’s rights and basic freedom in his country.

‘We stand in solidarity with Amir and call for the immediate removal of his punishment.’

The Islamic Republic on Monday,hanged a man in public who state media said had been convicted of killing two members of the security forces, the second execution in less than a week of people involved in protests against Iran’s ruling theocracy.

‘Majid Reza Rahnavard was hanged in public in (the holy Shi’ite city of) Mashhad this morning… He was sentenced to death for ‘waging war against God’ after stabbing to death two members of the security forces,’ the judiciary’s Mizan news agency reported.

Mizan published pictures of the execution at dawn, showing Rahnavard hanging from a construction crane, with his hands and feet bound and his head covered with a black bag.

The U.S. State Department on Monday condemned Iran for Rahnavard’s execution.

‘We denounce this draconian treatment in the strongest terms. These harsh sentences and now the first public execution… are meant to intimidate Iran’s people. They’re meant to suppress dissent,’ State Department spokesperson Ned Price told reporters at a briefing.

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