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We only have one day to save my brother's life

12/25/10 Interviewer: Masih Ali Nejad; source: Human Rights House of Iran (RAHANA)

The sudden announcement of Habib Latifi's imminent execution has caused the family and lawyer of this Kurdish student and political prisoner to focus all their efforts to save his life.

Habib Latifi

On Thursday December 22, 2010 (Dei 1,1389) Saleh Nikbakht, Habib Latifi's lawyer was informed by Judicial authorities of their definitive decision on his execution which is to take place on December 26 (Dei 5).

Elahe Latifi expressed her extreme concerns regarding her brother's situation and added: "The trend of case was very positive, File trend was very positive and do not even and we are not quite why Mr Nikbakht was informed of this sentence while most government organizations are closed down and our hands are tied."

She explained the measures needed to be taken to save her brother's life and said: "Mr Nikbakht called yesterday around 2 p.m. and stated the execution sentence has been faxed to him by authorities and my brother is to be executed on Sunday."

She added: "Today Mr Saleh Nikhbakht left Tehran to Sanandaj and followup on my brother's case. But in reality the timing of issuance of the sentence only gave us a short window to follow up since we only have tomorrow to try and sustain the sentence."

She was asked about the reaction of judicial officials of Sanandaj and Representatives of the province and in this regard stated: "Nobody from officials nor representatives have answered us. Nobody is taking responsibility, we do not know what to do. The sentence was delivered yesterday and our only hope is for Mr Nikbakht to be able to speak with authorities."
Habib Latifi's sister expresses her concerns as the only family member who has pursued her brother's case and added: "My parents are elderly and i don't dare give the the news regarding my brother's execution, therefore they are still unaware of the news. I myself am not in a good situation either, i have pursued his case until now, and will continue doing so."

When asked if her brother was aware of the execution, Ms Latifi said: "I last visited Habib on Tuesday, at that time he was told the execution sentence for 12 individuals have been finalized and said maybe i am one of them. I told him not to even think that way because his case was heading a positive direction."

About the actions of Human Rights organizations in regards to stop her brother's execution, she said: "I ask all Human Rights organizations and anyone who is able to help to come froward. But I still think what needs to be done has to be from inside the country."

I thought in honor of the month of Moharram, no executions will be carried out, but apparently that does not matter to the authorities. Our last hope is god."

At last Habibollah Latifi's twenty eight year old sister added: "One is hopeful until the last minute. Hopeful to be able to do anything for her loved one..."

Habibollah Latifi was first arrested on October 23 2007 (Aban 1, 1386) and was sentenced to death by a short court session lasting only a few minutes after enduring four months of interrogation and torture on June 30 2008 (Tir 10, 1387). His court , which lacked presence of family members was held at First branch of Revolutionary Court and was ruled by judge Hasan Babaei. His charges include crimes against national security and causing war.

In an interview with one of Iranian newspapers Saleh Nikbakht pointed to Habib Latifi's charges and added: "In his charges he has been accused of being affiliated with sound explosions at Azadi square of Sanandaj and it has been video taped. He has also been accused of blasting the town prosecutor's car and also it has been said he has participated in the attack toward "kani kuz leh" police station and was in charge of producing photos and videos from that event. This is while Habibollah Latifi has rejected all these accusations at court as well as while interrigation and stated not only has has not participated on any of these events, he was not even present at Sanandaj during those times and was living a secret life at a different location. We have asked the initial court and the appeals court to look into these accusations and summon all who think Mr Latifi was present at any of these event and state have seen him during. On the other hand, we have asked the family whom have given refuge to Mr Latifi to be summoned and testify in court; which neither issue was addressed. The court has announced the reports of police officials are sufficient enough for the court to decide a ruling. "

According to recent reports, and Habib Latifi's sister, since requesting hearings have not resulted on any actions from officials, Mr Nikbakht the attorney is traveling from Tehran to Sanandaj to stop this execution in the two days left, and speak with the authorities regarding this matter.

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