Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Omid, a memorial in defense of human rights in Iran
One Person’s Story

Seyed Kazem Ashrafzadeh


Age: 47
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Presumed Muslim
Civil Status: Married


Date of Killing: April 8, 1979
Location of Killing: Valiabad Cemetery, Dezful, Khuzestan Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Shooting
Charges: Sedition and/ or threat to public security; Unspecified anti-revolutionary offense; Corruption on earth

About this Case

The Kayhan newspaper published news of the execution of Mr. Seyed Kazem Ashrafzadeh (Seyed Ashrafi), along with two others, on April 8, 1979. Additional information is based on two electronic forms sent to Boroumand Foundation (ABF) by his relatives.

Mr. Ashrafzadeh is also one of 438 victims listed in a March 13, 1980 Amnesty International report. The report lists defendants who were convicted by Revolutionary Tribunals in the period from their inception until 12 August 1979. The list of victims and charges is drawn from sources including translations of indictments, reports of trials carried out by local and foreign media and the bulletins of the official Pars News Agency reports.

According to the information from the e-form sent to ABF, Mr. Seyed Kazem Ashrafzadeh (Seyed Ashrafi), son of Seyed-Ebrahim, was born in Dezful in 1932. He was married with 13 children. He had a primary school education and worked at an Iranian-American Industrial Agriculture Company as the head of security.       

Arrest and detention

According to an electronic form, Mr. Ashrafzadeh was arrested by Revolutionary Guards without warrant at Ayatollah Qazi’s residence when he went to visit the Ayatollah in February of 1979 at 5 p. m. He was denied access to attorney and detained at the UNESCO Prison in Dezful.       


According to the newspaper report, the Islamic Revolutionary Tribunal of Dezful tried Mr. Ashrafzadeh along with one other. According to an electronic form, per request of Mr. Ashrafzadeh, Ayatollah Musavi-Tabrizi, the representative of Emam [Khomeini’s] Office in Qom, went to Dezful to prosecute him. He was tried at the UNESCO Prison in Dezful on March 30, 1979 for two days.     


Kayhan Daily reported Mr. Ashrafzadeh’s charges together with one other as “brutal repression of people during the Revolution and anti-people action under the former regime.” He was also accused of “leading a group of hooligans who intruded upon Dezful’s villagers’ lives, properties and dignity, and taking over their lands by force.”  According to an electronic form, he was charged with “disturbing public order and bullying local farmers.”  

The validity of the criminal charges brought against this defendant cannot be ascertained in the absence of the basic guarantees of a fair trial.   

Evidence of guilt

According to information send by Mr. Ashrafzadeh’s relative to Boroumand Foundation, the case was based on complaints against the defendants.  


According to the defendant’s relative, and “due to false complaints, the plaintiffs were summoned to court by the order of Ayatollah Musavi-Tabrizi. They all announced that they had no complaints and had only signed papers [in order to] to receive financial support, including salaries from the revolutionary government. They were illiterate. Interesting enough, some of these people mentioned how Mr. Seyed-Kazem Ashrafzadeh (Seyed Ashrafi) had served them well and appreciated him. They indicated that they had no complaints against him and felt they owed their lives to his support and services.”


According to the Kayhan newspaper, the Islamic Revolutionary Court of Dezful recognized Mr. Seyed Kazem Ashrafzadeh guilty of “corruption on earth” and sentenced him to death. According to his relatives, Ayatollah Musavi-Tabrizi, the plenipotentiary representative of Emam [Khomeini], aquitted Mr. Ashrafzadeh, but revolutionary guards took him from his cell and executed him by a firing squad of Revolutionary Guards in the Valiabad Cemetery of Dezful on April 8, 1979 at 4:00 a.m.


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