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Foreign Affairs

Amnesty Says Iranian Arrested As Teenager Pardoned, Won’t Be Executed

The Iranian branch of Amnesty International says that a man who was a minor at the time of his alleged crime was pardoned at the last minute and won't be executed.

The human rights watchdog had raised an alarm earlier on August 15 and called for the cancelation of the scheduled execution of Mehdi Bohlouli on August 16, calling it "a sickening act of cruelty."

Bohlouli was sentenced to death in 2001, when he was 17, after being convicted of murder for what the authorities said was the fatal stabbing of a man during a fight.

Amnesty said on Twitter that Bohlouli received a last-minute pardon after the family of the deceased agreed to receive "blood money" (diyah).

"Mehdi Bohlouli will not be executed," it said.

Since the beginning of this year, Iran has executed at least four individuals who were under the age of 18 at the time of the crime.

Under Iranian law, murder, rape, sodomy, and armed robbery at any age are punishable by death.

Amnesty said that as of this month, it had identified at least 89 people on death row who were under 18 when their crime was committed.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

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