Islamic Republic Amputates 4 Fingers of Accused Iranian Thief

After being accused of stealing five sheep from a farm owned by a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), an Iranian prisoner has had four of his fingers amputated, while the prisoner denies the accusations.

The Iran Human Rights organization said the sentence to cut off four fingers from the hand of a 34-year-old prisoner, identified only as Yousef T., took place last summer in the central prison of Qom in central Iran.

An informed source mentioned by the organization said that Yousef T. maintained his innocence throughout the 13 months he was detained in prison before the sentence was carried out. The man was a builder working at the farm when he was arrested.

"Amputating a man's fingers for the alleged theft of a few sheep by a corrupt regime whose officials compete in billion-dollar thefts and embezzlement, demonstrates the utmost cruelty and immorality of this system," Mahmud Amiri Moghadam, the director of The Iran Human Rights, said.

"[Supreme Ruler Ayatollah Ali] Khamenei, the officials, and the judges of the judiciary, as well as the executors of these medieval sentences, must be held accountable for such crimes." Moghadam also added.

Diana Eltahawy, the deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International, described the punishment as "a horrifying display of the Iranian authorities' assault on human rights and human dignity."

The Abdorrahman Boroumand Center for Human Rights in Iran (ABC), a human rights organization based in Washington, D.C., said it has collected at least 356 sentences of amputation in Iran since the establishment of the Islamic Republic in 1979, adding that the real number might be many times higher.

Under the Islamic law enforced by the Iranian regime, repeat offenders face amputation of their fingers for theft, with the sentence being regularly carried out in Iranian prisons despite widespread condemnation abroad.

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