Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

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

Hormoz Gorji Bayani


Age: 34
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Non-Believer
Civil Status: Married


Date of Killing: August 19, 1979
Location of Killing: Central Prison (Dizelabad), Kermanshah, Kermanshah Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Shooting
Charges: Participating in clashes with revolutionary guards and or Bassij brothers; Actively opposing the Islamic Republic

About this Case

The execution of Mr. Hormoz Gorji Bayani, son of Hossein, was announced in the Kayhan newspaper on August 19, 1979. Additional information about this case has been gathered by the Boroumand Foundation from two electronic forms sent to Omid by individuals close to him, the book Sahifeh-ye Emam by Ayatollah Khomeini, the book Ayam-e Enzava (Times of Solitude) by Ayatollah Khalkhali, the Kayhan newspaper (Aug. 23, and Sep. 25, 1979), the report “The Demise of Sadeq Khalkhali” by Mansur Boluri (Iranian Political Bulletin, Nov. 30, 2003), and the report Murder at Mykonos published by the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center.

Mr. Gorji Bayani was born in Kermanshah in 1945. He held a bachelor’s degree in physics and taught in a high school. He sympathized with the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization. Before and after the revolution, he delivered speeches about political and cultural activism and organized such activities in which students and teachers partook. He was a husband and a father. At the time of his execution, his two children were at the ages of 4 and 1 (electronic forms).

Mr. Gorji Bayani’s execution was part of a wave of executions that took place in order to combat the “anti-Revolutionary” elements in the Kordestan region. Following the negotiations between the Kordish Democratic Party of Iran (PDKI) and the interim prime minister, several clashes occurred, at times armed, between the Revolutionary Guards and the peshmerga (the militia of the PDKI) particularly in the cities of Sanandaj (Kordestan province) and Paveh (Kermanshah province). These intensifying conflicts between the new central Shiite government of Iran and the mainly Sunni region of Kordestan concerned the role of minorities in the drafting of the constitution, specification of Shiite as the official state religion, and particularly the autonomy of the region.

Subsequent to conflicts that resulted in some casualties, on August 18, 1979, Ayatollah Khomeini issued an order to the military and the armed forces to “move to Paveh and end the fighting…” In the same order, he encouraged them to use force and threatened that: “if they do not move toward Paveh within 24 hours with missiles and tanks and all necessary arsenals, I will hold them accountable. And in case of any infringement of this order, I will treat them in a Revolutionary manner.” On August 19, Ayatollah Khomeini called the PDKI the “party of Satan” and declared it “unofficial and illegal” noting that some of these “anti-Islamic” individuals had boycotted the referendum of April 1, when people went to polls to vote for or against the Islamic regime.

In accordance with Khomeini’s order, Ayatollah Sadeq Khalkhali traveled the western region of Iran and told a reporter from the Ettela’at newspaper: “I will visit all areas of Kordestan… and will bring to justice anybody who was involved in these bloody plots.” According to Mr. Boluri, Ayatollah Khalkhali condemned at least 58 Kords to death in the span of 10 days. Mass executions and conflicts continued for many months in that region.

The Fadaiyan Khalq Organization, a Marxist Leninist group inspired by the Cuban Revolution and the urban guerilla movements of Latin America, was founded in 1971 by two communist groups opposed to the Pahlavi regime. Following the 1979 revolution, the Organization, which had renounced armed struggle, split over their support of the Islamic Republic and of the Soviet Union. The Fadaiyan Khalq Minority opposed the Islamic Republic and was active mainly in the political arena and the labor movement.

Arrest and detention

Mr. Gorji Bayani was arrested in his house around noon on August 18, 1979 in order to “give answers to a few questions for a short time, and taken to the Revolutionary Committee in his home clothes.” During his detention, which lasted about 14 hours, he was held incommunicado.

The 11 co-defendants were arrested by the Revolutionary Guards. According to statements of the religious judge in Kermanshah Province, it appears that authorities prohibited the families from visiting the prisoners: “I request the families to look after their children and watch for any anti-Revolutionary behavior or activity. [I also ask them] not to follow up with the cases of their children and let the Revolutionary Tribunals carry out their functions” (Kayhan, Aug. 23, 1979).


The newspaper report of the execution does not refer to a trial and only mentions the interrogation of defendants and testimony of witnesses. The Gorji Bayani family was unaware of a trial, if there was one. In an interview dated August 23, the religious judge of Kermanshah denied “the rumors of execution of leftists without trial.” In another interview about the recent executions in the region he stated: “the proceedings were carried with outmost attention and careful investigation. The court has never acted outside the Islamic criteria since the court is not only responsible before the people, but it is also accountable before God… It is true that the trial had the particularities of wartime, but the crimes were certainly proven based on explicit confession of defendants, testimony of witnesses, and other evidence; and the verdicts were issued and carried out in accordance with religious criteria.” The religious judge added: “Some newspapers, completely unaware of the reality of matters, have attacked the Islamic courts… Surely the objective for such misinformation is to advance counter-revolutionary plans” (Kayhan, Sep. 25, 1979).


The newspaper refers to the 11 defendants as “combatants who invaded Paveh.” Regarding the charges, the religious judge of Kermanshah stated: “evidence shows that Hormoz Gorji Bayani was involved in the incidents in Sanandaj, Orumieh, and Paveh, and in fact he was the mastermind of opponents to Islamic in the western region [of the country]. He was also the architect of the Quri Qal’eh sit-in in Paveh and other sit-ins that hindered government’s actions. He collaborated with the Kordish Democratic Party of Iran. And in case of autonomy for the region, he was to become to minister of education of autonomous Kordestan” (Kayhan, Sep. 25, 1979). The judge addressed the “rumors” that “Hormoz Gorji Bayani and [another individual] were actively involved in the Islamic Revolution and should not have been executed.” He said: “At that time also their activities were focused on Communism and anti-religious propaganda.”

According to available information, following the break-out of hostilities in the region, nearly a thousand of residents of Paveh had gathered in an area known as Qal’eh Quri (on the road between Kermanshah city and Paveh) in protest to state violence against Kords and endangering their lives. This sit-in, which lasted for almost two weeks, ended on August 18, 1979, when state authorities attacked Paveh and armed struggles broke out in the city.

Evidence of guilt

The religious judge of Kermanshah said that the evidence against Mr. Gorji Bayani was his own “confession” that he was member of the Tudeh Party. However, a personal close to Mr. Gorji Bayani stated that he was a sympathizer of the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization.

International human rights organizations have repeatedly condemned the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for its systematic use of severe torture and solitary confinement to obtain confessions from detainees and have questioned the authenticity of confessions obtained under duress. In the case of political detainees, these confessions are, at times, televised. The National Television broadcasts confessions during which prisoners plead guilty to vague and false charges, repent and renounce their political beliefs, and/or implicate others. Human rights organizations have also pointed to the pattern of retracted confessions by those prisoners who are freed.


No information is available concerning Mr. Gorji Bayani’s defense.


Mr. Hormoz Gorji Bayani and 10 other individuals were condemned to death as “corruptors on earth, and at war with God and God’s Prophet.” They were executed at 2:40 a.m. on August 18 in Dizel Abad prison of Kermanshah.

The religious judge said that the family of Mr. Gorji Bayani was to receive a certain amount of “allowance.”

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