Iran frees criminals if they volunteer in Syria
Tehran has also been covertly recruiting hundreds of Iraqis, Pakistanis, and Afghan to fight alongside the Syrian government forces
Iranian authorities are pardoning some of their most notorious criminals from its prisons as long as they agree to volunteer to fight in Syria, a local media outlet has reported.
Al-Hissar News, a local human right news website focused on Iranian prisoners, revealed how Tehran coaxes Iranian and Afghan prisoners with promises of amnesty if they returned intact from the war.
According to the source, prisons authority confirmed that the volunteered prisoners would be considered “martyrs”, in addition to benefits and perks to be rewarded to their families if they are killed while fighting on the frontlines.
Thousands of Iranian soldiers and militia fighters have been killed in Syria’s civil war, laying bare the scale of Iran’s intervention to preserve Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s grip on power.
Tehran has also been covertly recruiting hundreds of Iraqis, Pakistanis, and Afghan to fight alongside the Syrian government forces.
A prisoner at Rajaai Shar Karj prison, who refused to be identified for security reasons, said prisoners are restricted from disclosing their intention to volunteer to fight in Syria or clarifying the grounds of their pardons, according to news report.
“My mother staunchly rejected the idea of volunteering and told to let Khamenei and Rafsanjani send their children, not the helpless prisoners and Afghans,” the prisoner was quoted as saying.