UN Human Rights Experts Call on Iran to Annul Death Sentence Against Ahmadreza Djalali

Updated: Mar 13

On December 20, 2017, four UN human rights experts called on Iran to “immediately” annul the death sentence against Ahmadreza Djalali, an Iranian-Swedish academic who has been convicted of spying for Israel during nuclear talks with world powers.

Ahmadreza Djalali; Photo: Facebook

Djalali, who taught at the European Masters in Disaster Medicine (EMDM) in Italy, was arrested on charges of “collaboration with a hostile government” while visiting his family in Tehran in April 2016. He was then accused of providing information to Israel to aid in the assassination of several senior nuclear scientists and, following a closed trial on October 20, 2017, was sentenced to death.

Djalali himself has repeatedly said that he is being punished for refusing to spy for Iran while working in Europe.

The four independent experts working with the United Nations warned in their statement that “the procedure against him was marred by numerous reports of due process and fair trial violations.”

“The execution of Dr. Djalali must be immediately halted, and he must be released and accorded an enforceable right to compensation and other reparations,” the experts concluded. “Djalali’s rights to a fair trial before an independent and impartial tribunal and to an effective defense have been violated.”

The UN experts voiced particular concern over a video prepared by Iran’s Intelligence Ministry that aired on December 17, 2017. In the video a narrator speaks over images of a purported "interview" with Djalali that is crosscut with archive footage, accusing him of being a "traitor" and of having been recruited by Mossad.

According to the UN experts, “The timing of the video release, as well the allegations of coercion beg serious questions about its legitimacy."

A day after the video broadcasting, Djalali denied the allegations in an audio recording from prison. He said that the authorities forced him into the confession by promising to release him and by putting him under psychological pressure. Endangered Scholars Worldwide deplores Djalali's unjustified verdict and calls upon all international organizations, academic and professional associations, and other groups and individuals devoted to the promotion and defense of human rights to protest and condemn this arbitrary sentence; to call for Djalali’s immediate and unconditional release; and to urge the officials of the Iranian government to respect, guarantee, and implement the provisions and principles of human rights as specified in international conventions and treaties. Help us to save the life of our colleague.

Sign our petition and send appeals to the following:

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

The Office of the Supreme Leader

Jomhouri Street


Islamic Republic of Iran

Fax: +98 21 644 11

Website: http://www.leader.ir/langs/en/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/www.Khamenei.ir

Ayatollah Sadeqh Larijani

Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh (Office of the Head of the Judiciary)

Pasteur St., Vali Asr Ave., south of Serah-e Jomhouri


Islamic Republic of Iran

President Hassan Rouhani

The Office of the President

Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection


Islamic Republic of Iran

Javad Zarif

Minister of Foreign Affairs

The Minister’s Office

Imam Khomeini Square


Islamic Republic of Iran

Fax: +98 21 66743149

Website: http://www.mfa.gov.ir

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jzarif

Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Palais des Nations

CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Email: InfoDesk@ohchr.org

Dr. Koumbou Boly Barry

United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education

Palais des Nations

CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Email: sreducation@ohchr.org

David Kaye

United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression

Palais des Nations

CH-1211 Geneva 10


Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Email: freedex@ohchr.org

Federica Mogherini

High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

European Commission

Rue de la Loi / Wetstraat 200

1049 Brussels


Thorbjørn Jagland

Secretary General of the Council of Europe Council of Europe

Avenue de l'Europe

F-67075 Strasbourg Cedex


Fax: + 33 3 88 41 27 99

Philippe Boillat

Directorate General Human Rights and Rule of Law Council of Europe

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F-67075 Strasbourg Cedex


Fax: + 33 3 88 41 27 99

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