Shirkouh Moarefi

Iranian political prisoner Shirkouh Moarefi was executed on Monday November 4 at Saghez Prison.

Moarefi was arrested in November of 2008 on a charge of “enmity against God” and was sentenced to death. His defence attorney had applied for a pardon, but the application was not approved.

Moarefi’s defence reports that it was not informed about the date of the execution, claiming that the failure to inform the prisoner’s family and representatives was a violation of procedures.

In recent weeks, there has been an increase in the number of executions in prisons across Iran.

Last week, Habibollah Golparpour and Reza Esmaili, two other political prisoners, were hanged at Salmas Prison.

The Human Rights Activists News Agency also reports that four Iranian-Arab political prisoners have been transferred to an unidentified location, which may be a prelude to their execution.

Analysts speculate that the surge in executions is the result of hardliners in the Islamic Republic reacting to the reformist administration’s efforts to achieve a level of moderation in internal politics.