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Iran hangs 'armed Iranian Sunni Muslim group' leader

Sunday, June 20, 2010 12:09:44 PM, Agencies

Abdolmalek Rigi

Tehran: The leader of Jundallah, the 'armed Iranian Sunni Muslim group', has been hanged, the official IRNA news agency reported.

"After the decision of the Tehran revolutionary tribunal, Abdolmalek Rigi was hanged on Sunday morning," IRNA said.

It quoted a court statement as saying: "The head of the armed counter-revolutionary group in the east of the country ... was responsible for armed robbery, assassination attempts, armed attacks on the army and police and on ordinary people, and murder."

IRNA said Rigi had been sentenced to be executed in the presence of families of some of the victims of his group's violent attacks in Iran's southeast.

The court statement said Jundallah (Soldiers of God) was responsible for the killing of 154 security personnel and civilians since 2003.

"[Rigi] collaborated and ordered 15 armed abductions, confessed to three murders, ordered the murders of tens of citizens, police and military personnel through bombings and armed actions," the statement read.
 

Rigi was arrested in February by Iranian intelligence agents when an aircraft he was on en route from Dubai to Kyrgyzstan was forced to land in Tehran.
 

"Iranian authorities [say] that an order has been issued, a kind of a pardon, to all the members of Jundallah who put down their weapons and come ask for forgiveness," he said.

"We hear that more than 200 members of Jundallah have already done that after Abdolmalek was arrested.

"[The members] were his true followers and did whatever he wanted them to do. Now that he's gone they may have a lot of doubt in continuing his path."

Rigi's younger brother Abdulhamid was executed last month.

Iran has repeatedly said that Jundallah is backed by the United States.

The US has dismissed these claims as propaganda.

 

 

 

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