Police Shoot and Kill Two Kurdish Citizens, Injure a Third
In the week between November 8 and November 15, Iranian police killed two Kurdish citizens in the border region areas of Nosood in Kermanshah Province and Baneh in Kurdistan Province, allegedly as part of an effort to fight the smuggling of goods. Some residents of the region have expressed their outrage by closing their businesses, and the police fear public protests, a source with knowledge of the incidents told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.
On the evening of Thursday, November 14, police killed Avin Osmani, 19, when they shot directly at a moving car in Enjileh village outside Baneh. A bullet hit her in the spine; she died the next day. The source told the Campaign that Osmani, 19, was a passenger in the car along with her fiancé, and her brother was driving. About 500 meters before reaching their village of Enjileh, her brother, the driver, stopped the car. Three plainclothes anti-smuggling police officers approached the car and struck it with a weapon, the source said. The driver, thinking they were being attacked by bandits, started driving away from the officers, who then shot at the car from 30 feet away, injuring Avin Osmani.
The killing has led to public anger in the region, especially since Avin Osmani and her fiancé were scheduled to be married that week, the source told the Campaign. Allegedly fearing public protests, the police have detained the agent who shot at the car and has promised the Osmani family a judicial pursuit of the perpetrator. The victim’s family has meanwhile been warned not to talk to the media about the case.
Another Kurdish citizen was killed during the early morning hours of Friday, November 8, when border police shot at a vehicle carrying Ehsan Payam, a border tradesman, in the Nosood region. The shots killed him and injured Kavan Heydari, the vehicle’s driver. Two bullets struck Ehsan Payam in his back, and he died hours later. Residents and merchants in Nosood protested the violence by shutting down their businesses on Saturday, November 9.
In 2012, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran published Dangerous Borders, Callous Murders, a report on the deaths of dozens of border couriers and tradesmen in the hands of border police in Kurdish regions of Iran. Since then, murders of border couriers and tradesmen have continued.