A court in Iran has sentenced Azerbaijani Turkic minority rights activist Hojjat Esmatzadeh to 50 lashes and two years and six months in prison.
According to the verdict, issued in absentia by Branch 101 of the Criminal Court of Naghadeh, Hojjat Esmatzadeh was sentenced to 50 lashes and one year in prison for disturbing public order and 18 months in prison for publishing pictures on social media.
Hojjat Esmatzadeh was arrested on November 24, 2021, after being summoned to the Naghadeh Intelligence Office, and was transferred to Naghadeh Prison.
He was released on bail on November 28, 2021, awaiting trial.
He has previously been arrested and summoned for his activities.
The Iranian regime is one of the few states that still uses degrading punishments, even though all international civil and political rights conventions have prohibited the use of inhumane punishments such as execution and flogging.
The regime regularly hands out flogging sentences to protesters and dissidents and to those charged with adultery and theft, among other things. Flogging is a cruel and degrading punishment and is tantamount to torture.