Virgin Prisoners Raped Before Getting Killed in 1980s
In a shocking revelation on the Clubhouse online platform this week, Hussein Mortazavi Zanjani, the former head of Tehran’s Evin prison, disclosed the brutal treatment of Virgin prisoners raped in the 1980s. His harrowing account includes details of rape as a means to prevent these women from attaining paradise.
During his tenure as chief of the notorious prison from 1987 to 1988, Mortazavi revealed that virgin female prisoners were coerced into marrying guards before their execution. This inhuman practice was rooted in the belief that women and girls dying as virgins would go straight to paradise, a notion that led to the exploitation and victimization of these individuals.
Prisoners Raped: Punishments for Prisoners
The gravity of this revelation becomes more apparent when Mortazavi quoted the father of one of the executed women prisoners, expressing his anguish: “What deeply pains and angers me in life is not the killing of my daughter but that they brought money and claimed it was for a marriage sanctioned by Sharia law. This act was more devastating and horrifying to me than the loss of my child.”
Adding another layer to the chilling narrative, Mortazavi implicated the current president of the Islamic Republic, Ebrahim Raisi, in the execution of political prisoners. These executions were carried out based on a fatwa issued by Iran’s then-supreme leader, Ruhollah Khomeini, with Raisi serving as the deputy prosecutor of Tehran at the time.
Mortazavi’s revelations have sparked widespread reactions, with some former prisoners expressing skepticism about the extent of new and substantial information provided regarding the mass executions.
The Enigmatic Mortazavi About Raping Prisoners
Mortazavi shed light on his early involvement at Evin prison in 1981, initially tasked with “cultural work” by a cleric named Shafi’i, later the deputy of the Ministry of Intelligence. His duties included interviewing inmates before their release, aligning with Ayatollah Khomeini’s statement that “prison is a school.”
Ascending through the ranks, Mortazavi eventually became the head of Gohardasht prison near Tehran and later assumed the role of chief at Evin prison. He claimed to have resigned during the mass executions of political prisoners.
In an attempt to enter politics, Mortazavi ran for office in the 2000 parliamentary elections but failed to secure a seat. His slogan, “I am neither a face nor a piece [of chess],” reflected his intention to avoid political maneuvering and being manipulated by others.
Throughout the 1990s, Mortazavi addressed student gatherings, although right-wing student groups were hesitant to invite him due to his affiliation with the leftist movement.
Ambiguous Claims and Contradictions for Cruel Punishments of Prisoners
Mortazavi’s participation in Clubhouse events raised questions about the reliability of his statements. Despite claiming access to daily prisoner statistics, he conveniently forgot the figures. Former political prisoners accused him of making remarks riddled with contradictions.
He portrayed the head of the prison as lacking authority, unable to make decisions about crucial matters such as the transfer of prisoners to hospitals. However, some former political prisoners contended that prison officials played a significant role in preparing prisoners’ files for the “Death Board.”
Diverse Victims Prisoners
Mortazavi’s revelations extended beyond gender-based horrors. He disclosed experiences at the execution site, where a Kurdish inmate claimed he was targeted due to his Kurdish identity. In another segment, Mortazavi acknowledged the oppression faced by members of Kurdish and Baha’i minorities.
The revelations by Hussein Mortazavi Zanjani provide a chilling glimpse into the dark chapter of Evin prison’s history during the 1980s. The impact of his testimony raises profound questions about accountability, justice, and the collective responsibility to prevent such atrocities from recurring.