The fact that the Iranian government is cracking down on critics is nothing new. Boxer Mohammad Javad (26) also had to experience this firsthand. The athlete was convicted in his home country. In November 2019, he was arrested after taking part in mass anti-government protests. The accusation: The boxer is said to have participated in the destruction of certain places. Among these places was the State Penitentiary Building.
The boxer is also said to be a member of the “MEK”, an opposition group. This fights for a modern Iran. Human rights activists have now intervened and are trying to draw attention to the case. They want to save the life of the young athlete. However, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is currently silent.
This means that the life of an athlete in Iran must once again be feared. Human rights organizations have long criticized the arbitrary judiciary in religious and conservative Islam. So confessions are extracted under massive torture. Reports from those affected confirm that conditions in prisons are inhumane and that beatings and torture are part of the legal system.
It would not be the first case where an athlete has been sentenced to death in Iran. In 2020, wrestler Navid Afkari was hanged. He is said to have been responsible for the death of a police officer during an anti-government demonstration in 2018. The human rights organization Human Rights Watch said at the time: “The case of the Iranian wrestler is part of a pattern in which Iranian authorities ignore allegations of torture and use coerced confessions in court proceedings.”