Leader of Iran's Sunni rebel group Jundallah hanged: IRNA | world | Hindustan Times
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Leader of Iran's Sunni rebel group Jundallah hanged: IRNA

world Updated: Jun 20, 2010 12:08 IST

AFP
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Abdolmalek Rigi, head of the Sunni rebel group Jundallah who waged a deadly insurgency in Iran's southeastern province of Sistan-Balochistan, was hanged Sunday, state news agency IRNA reported.

"After the decision of the Tehran revolutionary tribunal, Abdolmalek Rigi was hanged this morning in Evin prison," 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."

Rigi was captured in February while on a flight. He led a shadowy Sunni militant group called Jundallah (Soldiers of God) that had waged a deadly insurgency in southeastern Iran killing civilians as well as military officials.

Iran says the group was backed by the United States.

IRNA, quoting the court statement, said Rigi's group was "responsible for the killing of 154 members of security forces and other innocent people and wounding of 320 people since 2003."

It said Jundallah was "linked to members of foreign intelligence services, including members from US and Zionist regime's intelligence services under the cover of NATO."

It was also linked to intelligence services of some Arabic countries and counter-revolutionary group People's Mujahedeen, the statement said.

Rigi himself was charged with forming the "terrorist group Jundallah which was fighting the Isalmic republic."

"He 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 added.

IRNA said he had been sentenced to be hanged in front of the relatives of some of the victims of his attacks, but the report did not specify whether he was actually executed in their presence.