Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

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

Fariba Omumi


Age: 27
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Islam (Shi'a)
Civil Status: Unknown


Date of Killing: December 13, 1988
Location of Killing: Evin Prison, Tehran, Tehran Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Unspecified execution method
Charges: Counter revolutionary offense

About this Case

Ms. Fariba Omumi is listed among 3,208 members and sympathizers of the People's Mojahedin of Iran Organization (PMIO) whose execution was reported by the organization in a book entitled Crime Against Humanity. This book documents the 1988-89 mass execution of political prisoners. Additional information was found on the Bidaran and the People's Mojahedin of Iran Organization websites.

According to the Mojahedin website, Ms. Fariba Omumi was born in Esfahan. She was a student at Tehran University and a sympathizer of the Mojahedin Organization. Her sister, Mansureh, was tortured and killed while in Esfahan prison in September 1981.

Arrest and detention

There is no specific information on the defendant’s arrest and detention. Ms. Fariba Omumi was arrested in 1981 and detained for seven years. She spent some time in solitary confinement and once was placed in the prison’s infirmary.


Ms. Fariba Omumi was tried and convicted in two courts. There is no specific information about these trials. The relatives of political prisoners executed in 1988 refute the legality of the judicial process that resulted in thousands of executions throughout Iran. In their 1988 open letter to then- Minister of Justice Dr. Habibi, they argue that the official secrecy surrounding these executions is proof of their illegality. They note that an overwhelming majority of these prisoners had already been tried and sentenced to prison terms, which they were either serving or had completed serving at the time they were retried and sentenced to death.


No charge was publicly leveled against the defendant. In their letters to the Minister of Justice (1988), and to the UN Special Rapporteur visiting Iran (February 2003), the families of the victims refer to the authorities' accusations against the prisoners – accusations that may have led to their execution. These accusations include being "counter-revolutionary, anti-religion, and anti-Islam," as well as being "associated with military action or with various [opposition] groups based near the borders."

An edict of the Leader of the Islamic Republic, reproduced in the memoirs of Ayatollah Montazeri, his designated successor, corroborates the reported claims regarding the charges against the executed prisoners. In this edict, Ayatollah Khomeini refers to the PMOI's members as "hypocrites" who do not believe in Islam and "wage war against God" and decrees that prisoners who still approve of the positions taken by this organization are also "waging war against God" and should be sentenced to death.

Evidence of guilt

The report of this execution contains no evidence provided against the defendant.


No information is available about the defendant’s defense. In their open letter, the families of the prisoners note that defendants were not given the opportunity to defend themselves in court. Against the assertion that prisoners were associated with guerrillas’ operating near the borders, the families refer to the isolation of their relatives from the outside during their detention: "Our children lived in most difficult conditions. Visits were limited to 10 minutes behind a glass divider via telephone every two weeks. During the past seven years, we witnessed that they were denied access to anything that would have allowed them to establish contacts outside their prisons' walls." Therefore, the families reject the authorities’ claim that these prisoners were able to engage with the political groups outside Iran.


No specific information is available about the defendant’s execution. Ms. Fariba Omumi was condemned to 15 years imprisonment in her first trial and to 17 years in her second trial. But, she was executed at the Evin prison on December 13, 1988. According to the Mojahedin website, her body was taken to the coroner’s office after her execution, and the officials asked her mother to identify her body.

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