Boys crying on the way to the gallows Posted by Picasa

Getting the death ropes ready to suffocate the kids... Posted by Picasa

Goodbye, young kids... Posted by Picasa

( - July 20, 2005) Iranian authorities hanged two boys for homosexual acts with another boy (allegedly 13) in the city of Masshad. At the time of the crime the two boys were both in the early to mid teens, one sixteen and the other believed to have been a juvenile. However they had been in prison awaiting execution for between fourteen months and two years (depending on which media account you read).

Before the execution they were brutally beaten 228 times each for allegedly having had been involved in theft and having had possession of alcahol at the time of the crime.

The prosecution claimed that the 13 year old had been raped at knifepoint but in Iran rape is often used as a smokescreen to justify gay executions. It is likely that the charges of alcahol use and theft were thrown in order to deter any sympathy for such young "offenders".

The executions went ahead despite the fact that Iran is a signatory to the 1994 convention banning the death penalty for minors. Roholla Raz-zadeh, the defending attorney, explained, “We did protest, but the Supreme Court accepted the death penalty imposed by the lower court.”

According to the National Council of Resistance of Iran the city of Masshad had witnessed widescale popular unrest against the new government just a few days earlier. It is not known yet whether there is any link between this and the timings of the executions.

A Government official expressed anger that the age of the victims had been leaked but insisted that they deserved to be hung. However he gave directions to the Iranian media not to reapeat this mistake.

“Even if certain websites made a reference to their age, journalists should not pursue this. These individuals were corrupt. Their sentence was carried out with the approval of the judiciary and it served them right.”