Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Omid, a memorial in defense of human rights in Iran
One Person’s Story

Jila Fathi


Age: 19
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Non-Believer
Civil Status: Single


Date of Killing: 1981
Location of Killing: Evin Prison, Tehran, Tehran Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Unspecified execution method

About this Case

The information about Ms. Jila Fathi has been drawn from an interview with a friend of hers who was a former librarian of the Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults in Kuch-e Esfahan. Since adolescence, Ms. Jila Fathi had been introduced to social issues by her librarian friend through book readings and collective discussions. During the revolution, she participated in anti-monarchy demonstrations.

After the revolution, she became a sympathizer of the Peykar Organization, but she had no organizational connection with them. Kuch-e Esfahan was a small town where Peykar was not present as an organization. She was a high school student expressing her criticism of the Islamic regime freely at school and she advocated the Peykar Organization.

Jila's family was very poor. Her friend recalls that she did not have warm clothes during winters and quoted Jila's mother saying that she denied herself simple and basic comforts such as using a pillow in order to understand the situation of prisoners. Jila had a talent for, and wrote some poetry. According to her cellmates, she always recited a poem in a Gilaki song (Gilaki is a local dialect in Northern Iran).

The Peykar Organization for the Liberation of the Working Class was founded by a number of dissident members of the Mojahedin Khalq Organization who had converted to Marxism-Leninism. Peykar was also joined by a number of political organizations, known as Khat-e Se (Third line). The founding tenets of Peykar included the rejection of guerrilla struggle and a strong stand against the pro-Soviet policies of the Iranian Tudeh Party. Peykar viewed the Soviet Union as a "Social imperialist" state, believed that China had deviated from the Marxist-Leninist principles, and radically opposed all factions of the Islamic regime of Iran. The brutal repression of dissidents by the Iranian government and splits within Peykar in 1981 and 1982 effectively dismantled the organization and scattered its supporters. By the mid-1980s, Peykar no longer existed.

Arrest and detention

After mass arrests began in early summer of 1981, Jila fled Kuch-e Esfahan since everyone there knew her in this small town. She went to Tehran without having a safe place to stay. She would wander the streets during the day and spend the night in her relatives' houses, until she was arrested on the street as a suspect in that same summer.

She was detained at Evin prison. Prison officials did not know anything about her, so they asked the Kuch-e Esfahan authorities for a report on her. Ms. Jila Fathi was known as a leftist and a sympathizer of the Peykar Organization in that town. Her cellmates gave this information to her mother. She had no visitation during her detention.


No information is available on the defendant’s trial.


No information is available on Ms. Jila Fathi’s charges.

The validity of the criminal charges brought against this defendant cannot be ascertained in the absence of the basic guarantees of a fair trial.

Evidence of guilt

The report of this execution does not contain information regarding the evidence provided against the defendant.


No information is available about her defense.


Ms. Jila Fathi was executed at Evin prison in 1981. No specific information is available about her execution. After her execution, her friend visited Jila's mother in the spring of 1982 and saw her will. According to this friend, Jila had written a very brief will with the following content: "I am Jila Fathi, 19 years old. I have nothing else to say."

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