December 20, 2021
Residents in the small town of Kamyaran gathered to protest the execution of Heydar Qorbani, a Kurdish political prisoner who was hanged at dawn on Sunday.
Hundreds of protesters gathered outside his home chanting “A martyr never dies”, according to a video published by a human rights monitoring group.
Earlier, hundreds of people in Kamyaran had signed a letter addressed to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei asking him to commute Qorbani’s death sentence.
He was arrested in October 2016 after several members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were killed close to Kamyaran.
Among the charges against him were the murder of three IRGC members and “taking up arms against the state” through membership in the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), an armed opposition group. During his trial, he had rejected any connection with any political party, carrying arms, and involvement in the killings.
The government has intensified arrests and disappearances of Kurdish citizens and activists in recent months.
A human rights group has published an audio recording in which Qorbani talks about his torture in prison, including hanging from the ceiling while his head is put into a plastic bag.