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Nearly 90,000 people pardoned by Iran’s judiciary following Leader’s amnesty

A file photo of Evin prison in the Iranian capital of Tehran

Nearly 90,000 people have been pardoned following Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei's landmark mass amnesty decree on the occasion of the 44th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in February, a judiciary official said Wednesday.

Sadeq Rahimi, deputy head of the Iranian judiciary, made the announcement on Wednesday, as cited by the Mizan news agency.

On February 5, Ayatollah Khamenei in a decree agreed to a request by Iran’s judiciary chief Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Eje'i to pardon or commute the sentences of a significant number of inmates.  

The mass amnesty was issued as the country was marking the 44th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, which put an end to the reign of the US-backed Pahlavi regime in the country in 1979 and also coincided with the birthday anniversary of the first Shia Imam, Imam Ali (AS). 

By the decree, Ayatollah Khamenei pardoned or commuted the sentences of a large number of Iranian prisoners arrested during the recent foreign-backed riots in the country.

According to reports, a significant number of prisoners have been released as part of the decree while officials are continuing to examine the cases of prisoners.

The mass amnesty, however, comes with certain conditions as it does not apply to those convicted on charges of spying for foreign intelligence agencies, those having affiliation with groups hostile to the Islamic Republic as well as those held on serious security-related charges.

Riots erupted in Iran in mid-September when 22-year-old woman Mahsa Amini died in a hospital in Tehran, three days after she collapsed at a police station. An investigation later attributed Amini’s death to her pre-existing medical condition, rather than alleged beatings by the police.

Rioters went on a rampage, brutally attacking security officers and causing massive damage to public property. Dozens of people and security personnel were killed in the riots. 

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi hailed the generous act of Ayatollah Khamenei, saying, “In order to make the sweetness of his wise move more enjoyable for the people, it is necessary to extend and strengthen this view in the political and social spheres.”

The announcement was widely welcomed by people and officials across the country.

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