Khatami, Seyyed Ahmad

Also Known As:
Khatami, Ahmad; Khatami, Sayyid Ahmad
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Member of the Guardian Council and Assembly of Experts. He described those protesting the 2009 presidential election's contested outcome as engaging in "war against God," a crime in Iranian law carrying the death penalty. In the VOA's words, he "called on the government to punish the leaders of the country's post-election protests cruelly and without mercy."1

"Seyyed Ahmad Khatami is a hard-line cleric and an influential Friday-prayer imam in Tehran. Khatami is also a member of the Assembly of Experts for the Leadership, an Iranian entity that is itself implicated in human rights violations for its neglect in upholding constitutional provisions. As a cleric close to the state authorities and with a large audience, he leverages his position to verbally attack and incite violence against protesters. He not only defends the repressive actions of the security forces of Iran but has also on several occasions urged for even harsher treatment of protesters, including the death sentence. He is therefore responsible for serious human rights violations in Iran."2 

On November 18, 2022, Khatami said trying to undermine the Iranian regime is “haram” (forbidden) and “we should deal with rioters using the toughest punishments.” He divided demonstrators into “murderers,” those “opposing God,” and ones “spread lies and agitate public opinion.” He said all three types of people were liable to capital punishment. Khatami also said the government’s infliction of violence was restricted to “rioters burning ambulances.”3





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