Tehran Toughens Stance against Protesters, Judiciary Threatens Capital Punishment

 Students of the Faculty of Art at the University of Tehran raise papers demanding the release of detainees (Coordinating Committee of Student Unions)
Students of the Faculty of Art at the University of Tehran raise papers demanding the release of detainees (Coordinating Committee of Student Unions)
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Tehran Toughens Stance against Protesters, Judiciary Threatens Capital Punishment

 Students of the Faculty of Art at the University of Tehran raise papers demanding the release of detainees (Coordinating Committee of Student Unions)
Students of the Faculty of Art at the University of Tehran raise papers demanding the release of detainees (Coordinating Committee of Student Unions)

Iranian officials have sharpened their threats against anti-regime protesters with the country's hardliner Chief Justice Gholam-Hossein Ejei announcing on Monday his support for delivering the death penalty against demonstrators.

“The deputy head of the judiciary and the public prosecutor are following up on a daily basis the files of key figures in the recent unrest,” Ejei said on the third day of the eighth week of civil disobedience following the death of 22-year-old Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini in police custody.

Ejei also vowed to intensify the punishment of those arrested during the protests following a call by the parliament members who have urged the judiciary to issue death sentences for the protesters.

“Whoever carries a firearm or a cold weapon and uses it as an agent of the enemy, threatens the security of the country and raises terror in any region, and at the same time kills a person, retribution (execution) may be carried out against them, and other charges may apply,” said Ejei.

Despite backing calls for serving capital punishment to some protesters, Ejei said that the judiciary will differentiate between demonstrators those who were moved emotionally to participate in the unrest and those who committed crimes and acted on foreign orders.

“The enemies have received a resounding defeat and are trying to carry out harmful actions,” state-run ISNA news agency quoted Ejei as saying.

Later, a court in Tehran convicted three protesters of “war against god.”

The official IRNA news agency stated that the three detainees were brought before the judiciary on charges of sabotaging public funds by setting fire, disrupting public order, assembling, collusion, and carrying out attacks against the regime.

A lawyer for one of the defendants said that his client had burned tires on a highway, which are not considered public money.

Hassan Hassanzadeh, commander of Revolutionary Guards forces in Tehran, threatened to deal with protesters “strictly” on Monday.

He said that the Revolutionary Guards and the police had arrested 14 people they believe are involved in the killing of a prominent member of the Basij forces, west of Tehran.

“The judiciary will deal seriously with those who committed crimes and caused the death of security personnel,” said Hassanzadeh.

“Our security ability to identify and arrest those who stir unrest remains high,” the commander added in an interview with the Revolutionary Guard's affiliated Fars News Agency.



Boy Accused of Terrorist Act in Sydney Church Faces New Charges

FILE - Security officers stand guard outside Orthodox Assyrian church in Sydney, Australia, April 15, 2024. A 16-year-old boy accused of committing a terrorist act by stabbing a bishop in a Sydney church in April faces two additional charges, a court was told on Friday, June 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)
FILE - Security officers stand guard outside Orthodox Assyrian church in Sydney, Australia, April 15, 2024. A 16-year-old boy accused of committing a terrorist act by stabbing a bishop in a Sydney church in April faces two additional charges, a court was told on Friday, June 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)
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Boy Accused of Terrorist Act in Sydney Church Faces New Charges

FILE - Security officers stand guard outside Orthodox Assyrian church in Sydney, Australia, April 15, 2024. A 16-year-old boy accused of committing a terrorist act by stabbing a bishop in a Sydney church in April faces two additional charges, a court was told on Friday, June 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)
FILE - Security officers stand guard outside Orthodox Assyrian church in Sydney, Australia, April 15, 2024. A 16-year-old boy accused of committing a terrorist act by stabbing a bishop in a Sydney church in April faces two additional charges, a court was told on Friday, June 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)

A 16-year-old boy accused of committing a terrorist act by stabbing a bishop in a Sydney church in April faces two additional charges, a court was told on Friday.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was arrested at the scene of the stabbing on April 15 in an Assyrian Orthodox church as a service was being streamed online, AFP reported.

The earlier charge of committing a terrorist act carries a possible life sentence, while the new charges carry maximum sentences of 25 years each.

A prosecutor told the Parramatta Children’s Court on Friday that the boy had also been charged with wounding with intent to murder Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel and wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm a priest, Rev. Isaac Royel. Neither cleric sustained life-threatening injuries.

Police have identified 52,000 images and 7,500 videos from the boy's phone that could be used as evidence in the terrorist charge prosecution.

Prosecutors expect to provide defense lawyers with the final evidence within six weeks.

The boy did not apply for release on bail on Friday and remains in custody.