[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]
[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]
[Personal information has been redacted.]
[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]
[Adapted from website:] Shoaresal
[Date:] 30 Mehr 1398 [22 October 2019]
Khalkhali Killed Hoveyda
Hadi Ghaffari Did Not Respond to the New Allegation of Killing Hoveyda
In recent days, in an interview with the Jamaran News Agency website, Abol-Fazl Tavakkoli-Bina, a member of the United Party, claimed that Sadegh Khalkhali had killed Amir Abbas Hoveyda. All these years, there have been allegations that Hadi Ghaffari killed Hoveyda with a glock pistol in the corridor of Qasr Prison, but he has repeatedly denied this accusation in interviews.
After all, who killed Hoveyda?
The death of the prime minister for thirteen years in the second Pahlavi era is still a matter of debate.
Hojatoleslam Hadi Ghaffari (18 Mordad 1397 [9 August 2018]): “I had no role in Hoveyda’s case and my only crime was that I was present in public court for ten minutes as a spectator… When I got to the court, one of the officials of the court got up and put me in the front row of the court and sat me next to Hoveyda. After the trial was almost over and the accused was taken out, I got up and left… No one, except Mr. Khalkhali and God, knows who killed Hoveyda… Hoveyda’s grave is in the City of Akka [sic] in the Israeli-occupied area… As I have heard, the body of Hoveyda was taken to forensic medicine and was embalmed, then it was taken to Turkey, and from there it was taken to a place called “the Haziratu’l-Quds” in Akka, which is the cemetery of the Baha’is. I saw Hoveyda’s body. He was not even circumcised. He was not a Muslim and did not believe in Islam.”
The former secretary general of the Freedom Movement, Ebrahim Yazdi said, “When Hoveyda was brought from the Jamshidieh barracks to the Refah School, he addressed me saying, ‘I have many things to say’… I told Mr. Khomeini that Hoveyda had a lot of secrets…that we had got to let him to speak out. Mr. Khomeini accepted my suggestion. He told Khalkhali: ‘Do as he says’… When Hoveyda stepped in the corridor of the court, one of the clerics who was there, and I do not want to mention his name now, killed him in the corridor with his own pistol.”
The then head of Qasr Prison, Asghar Rokhsafat, said, “During that period, Mr. Hadi Ghaffari, without having any responsibility, used to come to the Qasr Prison. He used to take out and bring in the accused. He used to take weapons in and out. Repeatedly, I asked the judges why a person without any responsibility comes and goes freely in prison. On the day of Hoveyda’s trial, when he was taken to the back yard of the prison, Hadi Ghaffari killed Hoveyda with one shot before the verdict was announced. I remember when the sound of the shot came at an inappropriate time, I was terrified. When I went toward the sound of gunfire, I realized that Mr. Ghaffari had killed Hoveyda!
The people’s representative in Hoveyda’s trial at the court, Abol-Fazl Hakimi, said, “After a while, they announced a break and took Hoveyda out of the back door of the court. I followed him. Hoveyda was taken down the stairs. That part of the Qasr Prison building had a small courtyard with two solitary, cell-like rooms at the end. Suddenly, the sound of firing bullets came from the cells. Moments later, Mr. Khalkhali and Mr. Ghaffari left the room. Mr. Ghaffari was holding a glock pistol, and Khalkhali, while rebuking [Ghaffari] said, ‘Why did your hand tremble?’ I understood that they have killed Hoveyda.”