Investigations carried out by the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) show that many Kurdish civilians and activists from Iran have become victims of human rights violations in August 2021.

The followings are the detailed information collected by the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) statistics and documentation centre regarding these violations.


In August, Iran executed at least seven Kurdish civilians in prisons in Salmas, Orumiyeh, Kermanshah, Harsin, and Paveh on “drugs” and “premeditated murder” charges.

These are only the cases of execution that the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) has been able to gather information through its sources. The total number of executions is likely to be higher.

One of the executed prisoners was Sajjad Sanjari, a “child offender” who was arrested in 2011 at the age of 15 for killing a child of his age during a street fight. A court later sentenced him to “retribution in kind” (qisas).

On 2 August, his death sentence was carried out secretly in Dizel Abad Prison in Kermanshah without allowing his family to visit him one last time.

NameFromCharged withExecution dateExecution location
1Hamzeh RezaeiSalmasDrugs2 AugustOrumiyeh Central Prison
2Sepehr AbbasnezhadOrumiyehDrugs2 AugustOrumiyeh Central Prison
3Eskandar ZaareOrumiyehDrugs2 AugustOrumiyeh Central Prison
4Sajjad SanjariKermanshahPremeditated murder2 AugustDizel Abad Prison in Kermanshah
5Arsalan KarimiHarsinDrugs2 AugustDastgerd Prison in Isfahan
6Mojtaba TondroKermanshahPremeditated murder14 AugustKaraj Prison
7Afshar MinaeiPavehPremeditated murder19 AugustDizel Abad Prison in Kermanshah


In this period, at least three cases of murder of women were reported in Marivan, Sanandaj, and Saqqez in Kurdistan province.

The victims’ husbands committed all these killings.

1Monireh GhaderiMarivan1 AugustKilled by husband
2Shilan MandomiSanandaj6 AugustHusband killed her and 3 other family members
3Sabri NaalbandiSaqqez22 AugustKilled by husband


In August, the Islamic Republic of Iran military forces killed at least one kolbar and wounded 13 in the western border areas of Kurdistan, Kermanshah, and West Azerbaijan provinces.

Also, two kolbars lost their lives in a road accident, and nine others were injured either in a road accident or falling from mountain heights.

NameFromLocation of incidentDate of incidentDead/injuredDescription
1Mohammad ChokaliPiranshahrPiranshahr border areas2 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
2Mohammad HosseinzadehPiranshahrPiranshahr border areasJuly 30InjuredShot by border forces
3Naser KhorshidiBanehBaneh border areasJuly 30InjuredShot by border forces
4Hazhar SalehiSardashtSardasht border areas3 August InjuredShot by border forces
5Ali SalehiSardashtSardasht border areas3 August InjuredShot by border forces
6AbdolbasetMarivanSarvabad border areas4 August InjuredThrown down from a cliff by border forces
7Jamal SharifiBanehBaneh border areas4 August DeadAccident
8Mahdi MoloudpourBanehBaneh border areas4 August DeadAccident
9Mozaffar PanahiBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
10Mohsen EsmailiBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
11Yaser SalehiBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
12Sina AbdollahiBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
13Sardar RostamzadehBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
14Abdolkhalegh SharifiBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
15Hesamoddin Mousa TavakkoliBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
16Siamak AramBanehBaneh border areas4 August InjuredAccident
17Omid KhezriMahabadBaneh border areas9 AugustDeadShot by border forces, 47-year-old, father of two
18Farhad EsmailiPiranshahrBaneh border areas9 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
19Soran RasouliSardashtSardasht border areas13 August InjuredShot by border forces
20Jalil ZeiniSardashtSardasht border areas13 August InjuredFell down mountain heights
21Obeid AhmadiBanehBaneh border areas16 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
22Fereydoun MohammadzahedBanehBaneh border areas17 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
23Khalil KhalediBanehBaneh border areas17 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
24Bahman KarimpanahBukanHangeh-ye Zhal border areas31 AugustInjuredShot by border forces
25Arman RasouliBukanHangeh-ye Zhal border areas31 AugustInjuredShot by border forces

Landmine Explosions

On 15 August, the explosion of landmines leftover from the eight-year Iran-Iraq war killed two employees of the demining department in the Cham Hendi village of Dehloran, Ilam province.

Another employee was injured in the explosion.

NameExplosion locationExplosion dateStatusDescription
1Ali AkbariCham Hendi village of Dehloran15 AugustDeadEmployee of demining department
2Mehdi JavadiCham Hendi village of Dehloran15 AugustDeadEmployee of demining department
3UnknownCham Hendi village of Dehloran15 AugustInjuredEmployee of demining department

Work Accidents

In August, at least two Iranian Kurdish workers lost their lives in work accidents in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

Due to the high unemployment rate in the cities of Iranian Kurdistan, every year, a large number of Kurdish citizens of Iran are forced to migrate to other cities of the country and Iraqi Kurdistan in search of job opportunities.

NameLocation of IncidentDate of incidentDead/injuredDescription
1Raouf MohammadiKurdistan Region of Iraq23 AugustDeadWork accident working in road construction
2Hossein MaroufpourKurdistan Region of Iraq28 AugustDeadWork accident

Detentions and Arrests

Iranian police, Ministry of Intelligence, and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) arrested at least 47 Kurdish civilians, activists, and former political prisoners in various cities in Kermanshah, Kurdistan, and West Azerbaijan provinces on political charges.

Reportedly, security forces also detained three children in Javanrud, Kermanshah province. They were then released after several hours in detention.

NameDetention locationDetention dateActivityDetention location and latest status
1Hemin GharadaghiMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
2Rizgar EinalouMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
3Ahad SoonehMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
4Ako DourbashMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
5Soran DourbashMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
6Kaveh SoleimanpourMahabad1 AugustCivilianUnknown
7Diyar SoleimanpourMahabad2 AugustCivilianUnknown
8Obeid AnvariOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianUnknown
9Hassan ShadikhahOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianReleased after several hours of interrogation
10Rebwar CharakdariOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianUnknown
11Rahman AsadiOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianUnknown
12Farhad MaroufiOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianUnknown
13Jalal GhaderizadehOshnavieh2 AugustCivilianUnknown
14Madeh FathiSanandaj5 AugustEnvironmental activistReleased after several days in detention centre of Ministry of Intelligence
15Bahaeddin MostafanezhadPiranshahr7 AugustCivilianUnknown
16Awat MohammadpourOshnavieh7 AugustCivilianArrested to serve 6-month sentence, sent to city prison
17Kavan MahmoudianSanandaj8 AugustFormer political prisonerTaken to detention centre of Ministry of Intelligence
18Younes GhaderiNaqadeh9 AugustCivilianReleased on bail, was detained in Naqadeh protests
19Hadi PorgolNaqadeh8 AugustCivilianReleased on bail, was detained in Naqadeh protests
20Rasoul MohammadiNaqadeh8 AugustCivilianUnknown, was detained in Naqadeh protests
21Omid SarafrazDivandarreh9 AugustCivilianTaken to detention centre of Intelligence Organisation of IRGC in Sanandaj
22Rashid RahimiBukan9 AugustCivilianUnknown
23Nasser HemmatiIsfahan10 AugustCivil rights activistArrested to serve 2-year sentence, sent to Dastgerd Prison in Isfahan
24Abdorrahman GhaderiPiranshahr10 AugustCivilianUnknown
25Mozaffar AhmadiPiranshahr10 AugustCivilianUnknown
26Arsalan PourmohammadPiranshahr10 AugustCivilianUnknown
27Khabat MafakheriSanandaj10 AugustEnvironmental activistSent to prison after several days in detention centre of Ministry of Intelligence
28Amir HoushmandSanandaj11 AugustCivilianUnknown
29Edris SharifiMahabad13 AugustCivilianUnknown
30Faryar BehnamPaveh15 AugustCivilianUnknown
31Soleiman GoliDivandarreh15 AugustCivilianTaken to a security detention centre in Sanandaj
32Chro AhmadiDivandarreh16 AugustKurdish language teacherReleased after several hours
33Sardar AlaniOshnavieh16 AugustCivilianUnknown
34Ebrahim AlizadehPiranshahr16 AugustCivilianArrested to serve 6-month sentence, sent to city prison
35Sirwan ArghavaniSanandaj16 AugustCivilianArrested to serve 6-month sentence, sent to city prison
36Farzad SadeghianSanandaj16 AugustCivilianArrested to serve 6-month sentence, sent to city prison
37Salah OsmaniPiranshahr17 AugustFormer political prisonerSent to Naqadeh Prison
38Heydar KhezriPiranshahr23 AugustCivilianUnknown
39Ansar AdvaiSarvabad23 AugustCivilianArrested to serve 4-month sentence, sent to Marivan Prison
40Tara AhmadiJavanrud23 AugustChildReleased after several hours
41Sonya KarimiJavanrud23 AugustChildReleased after several hours
42Parya FathiJavanrud28 AugustChildReleased after several hours
43Mohammad RasayiMarivan26 AugustCivilianUnknown
44Yasin RahavarOshnavieh28 AugustCivilianTaken to a security detention centre in Orumiyeh
45Shirzad MamandiOshnavieh29 AugustCivilianUnknown
46Ali HeidarzadehOshnavieh29 AugustCivilianUnknown
47Houshiar ShaabaniBaneh29 AugustFormer political prisonerUnknown

Prison Sentences

Also, in this period, the Criminal Court of Sanandaj and the Islamic Revolutionary Courts of Sanandaj and Saqqez condemned at least five Kurdish civilians and activists to sentences varying from seven months to two years and six months in prison and 90 lashes on political charges.

Two of these individuals, Shahram Amjadian and Morteza Haghjouyan, were sentenced to 90 lashes in addition to two years of imprisonment for “defaming provincial managers and publishing government documents”.

NameResidenceCharged withDate sentencedIssuing courtSentenceDescription
1Shahram AmjadianSanandajDefaming provincial managers and publishing government documents3 AugustBranch 104 of Criminal Court of Sanandaj2 years and 6 months in prison and 90 lashes
2Morteza HaghjouyanSanandajDefaming provincial managers and publishing government documents3 AugustBranch 104 of Criminal Court of Sanandaj2 years and 6 months in prison and 90 lashes
3Mostafa AhmadiSanandajPropaganda against the state, insulting founder of the Islamic Rep. of Iran4 AugustIslamic Revolutionary Court of Saqqez2 years in prison
4Khaled KariminiaSaqqezPropaganda against the state8 AugustIslamic Revolutionary Court of Saqqez7 months in prison
5Attar RahmanzadehSaqqezPropaganda against the state24 AugustCourt of appeals in Sanandaj11-months prison sentence upheldIslamic Revolutionary Court's ruling upheld

Appeal against Death Sentence Rejected

On 11 August, the Chief Justice of the western Kurdistan province rejected the appeal for retrial of the Kurdish political prisoner Heydar Ghorbani, raising fears of his execution.

After the rejection of the appeal, the case was sent to the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Kamyaran, Kurdistan province. The prisoner’s family are concerned about the possibility the prosecutor could order his imminent execution.

In February 2020, Branch 1 of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Sanandaj – presided over by Judge Saeidi – sentenced Heydar Ghorbani to death on charges of “armed insurrection” through “membership in the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDPI)”.

More than 100 Kurdish political and civil rights activists in various cities of Iran have called on judicial officials in an open letter to overturn Kurdish political prisoner Heydar Ghorbani’s death sentence.

Separately, more than a thousand Kurdish civilians in the cities of Kamyaran, Marivan, Sanandaj, and Kermanshah, as well as 50 Sunni clerics and imams of Kurdistan, have signed a petition and a letter to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, calling for the death sentence of Heydar Ghorbani to be revoked.

In a statement published on 26 August, the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) called upon activists in human rights organisations, journalists in the mass media, and civilians on social media platforms to do their best to prevent the political prisoner’s execution.

The statement said: “Although the Iranian judicial system, in which such verdicts are handed down unjustly, has repeatedly carried out executions of civilians and activists – regardless of legal documents, international protests, and public pressure – our duty and commitment dictate that in addition to legal action taken within the framework of domestic laws by lawyers and the family, we must continue our efforts through the pressures by human rights organisations and public opinion to repeal these unjust and inhumane sentences.”

Political Assassinations

On August 8, a Kurdish political activist and a senior member of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDPI), Musa Babakhani, was killed in a hotel in Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan.

In an official statement, KDPI blamed the Islamic Republic of Iran for the assassination of this member of its central committee.

In a statement, the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) condemned the assassination of Musa Babakhani. It called on Javaid Rehman, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran, to conduct the necessary investigations into the role of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Babakhani’s assassination and other similar assassinations in recent dates and to take decisive action to condemn the physical elimination of dissidents by the Iranian government abroad.

The KHRN also called on the Kurdistan Regional Government, on the soil of which the recent assassinations took place, to take a clear stand against the actions of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the killing of Iranian Kurdish political activists and refugees and to fulfil its legal and humanitarian obligation to protect the lives of asylum seekers and refugees in its territory to act in accordance with international standards and cooperation with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Ethnic and Religious Disputes

On 7 August, an Azerbaijani-Turkic civilian in Naqadeh, West Azerbaijan province, killed a Kurdish civilian named Fardin Ebrahimi during a dispute. Unfortunately, the city became a scene of unrest that quickly took on an ethnic/religious aspect after the incident.

Numerous reports from local sources in Naqadeh and videos posted on social media indicated that a group of Azerbaijani-Turkic civilians attacked a Kurdish neighbourhood in the city and destroyed Kurdish civilians’ shops.

Unfortunately, it was reported that the law enforcement forces did not act decisively to prevent the escalation of the conflict and acted biasedly.

Mohammad Alizadeh, another Kurdish civilian, was shot dead by a plainclothes man during the unrest.

The Naqadeh prosecutor confirmed the violent clashes in the city and the deaths of two people.

Dozens were reportedly injured, and more were arrested, according to confirmed reports.

Following these incidents, along with the provocative positions of some groups, several Kurdish parties called on the people to calm down. Also, a group of Azerbaijani-Turkic activists in Naqadeh issued two statements drawing attention to the need for living peacefully in the city, expressing their abhorrence against racism and hatred.

The Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) condemns the killing of two civilians and the attacks on Kurdish neighbourhoods and shops. It emphasises the need to prosecute the killers and perpetrators of the destruction of civilians’ properties.

The KHRN believes that the role of the Islamic Republic of Iran in establishing peace or abusing these differences should be seriously considered and criticised.

A member of the board of directors of the KHRN spoke in a short media interview in this regard and said: “What is certain is that the history and depth of coexistence of the Azerbaijani-Turkic and Kurdish peoples in Naqadeh are much greater than these differences. Parties and activists of identity politics should know that Naqadeh and any other region with two ethnicities are not a field of coercion and totalitarianism, but the place where all those people, including Kurdish and Azerbaijani-Turkic civilians, live.”

IRGC Shelling Caused Widespread Fire in Shaho Forests

On 26 August, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) shelled the protected forests of Shaho Mountain, between Deyvaznav and Palangan villages in Kamyaran, Kurdistan Province, causing a fire in a large part of the forest.

IRGC forces prevented the people’s volunteer forces from controlling the fire and shelled the area despite being aware of the presence of ranchers and beekeepers, local sources said.

Despite objections by environmental activists, the IRGC has destroyed a large part of the pastures and forests in these areas during the construction of military bases and roads leading to these bases.

The IRGC deliberately burns the pastures and forests around these military bases due to what it claims to be an act for “preventing the Kurdish opposition parties from using vegetation cover to attack” the bases.

IRGC-Kurdish Opposition Clashes

The IRGC-affiliated Tasnim News Agency reported on 31 August that the Beytolmoghadas brigades of the IRGC in Kurdistan province have said that their forces clashed with a Kurdish opposition group in Sarvabad on 26 August.

The IRGC claimed that some group members were killed and injured but did not give detailed information on the clash.