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Iran Urged Not To Execute Kurd Over Crime Committed As Minor

UN human rights experts and international rights watchdogs have appealed to Iran to halt its planned execution of a young Iranian Kurdish man who was sentenced to death over a crime he committed as a minor.

Saman Naseem, 22, is scheduled to be executed February 19 after being found guilty of membership of the rebel Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK) and involvement in armed confrontations with the Revolutionary Guards.

He was 17 at the time of his arrest and was sentenced to death in April 2013, after allegedly being tortured.

Ahmed Shaheed, special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran, and Christof Heyns, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial executions, said in a statement February 18 that "the execution of juvenile offenders is clearly prohibited byinternational human rights law."

Amnesty International and the International Federation for Human Rights also demanded a halt to the execution. AI said in a statement on February 17, that Shaheed's planned execution "shows the state of injustice in the country."

Based on reporting by AFP and AP