Despite an upsurge in criticism against Iran's renewed hanging spree, Iranian authorities executed a man in public in front of large crowds Thursday, a rights group revealed.
Iran Human Rights (IHR) reported that the man, who was convicted of the capital crime of "corruption on earth" -- a vague Islamic law term interpreted among the highest crimes by the Islamic Republic and punishable by death -- was executed in the city of Maragheh in Eastern Azerbaijan.
“The international community cannot endorse such medieval practices,” said IHR director Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, adding the execution shows the “true face of a government that tries to prolong its life with cruelty, humiliation and intimidation of society.”
Iranian news websites showed images of what appeared to be hundreds of people gathered to watch the execution behind a security tape as prosecutors spoke to reporters.
The man was shown blindfolded next to his two executioners in balaclavas. Another image showed him standing on a chair ahead of the execution with the noose around his neck and hanging from a rope attached to a crane once dead.
Although the nature of the alleged crimes was not immediately clear, the convict, who was first arrested some five years ago, was found guilty of charges related to his sexual relations with women.
In Iran, more people are executed each year than in any other country other than China, according to rights groups including Amnesty International, but public executions are relatively rare, with most hangings taking place inside prisons.
There were no public executions in 2021, according to IHR.