Archiv der Kategorie: Iran Human Rights

UN| Situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Promotion and protection of human rights: human rights situations and reports of special rapporteurs and representatives

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Situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

The General Assembly, Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, as well as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,1 the International Covenants on Human Rights 2 and other international human rights instruments,

Recalling its previous resolutions on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, the most recent of which is resolution 69/190 of 18 December 2014,

1. Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General of 31 August 2015 submitted pursuant to resolution 69/1903 and the report of the Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council of 6 October 2015, 4 submitted pursuant to Council resolution 28/21 of 27 March 2015,5 both on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran;

2. Continues to welcome the pledges made by the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran with regard to some important human rights issues, particularly on eliminating discrimination against women and members of ethnic minorities, and on greater space for freedom of expression and opinion;

3. Acknowledges proposals for legislative and administrative changes in the Islamic Republic of Iran, which, if properly implemented, would address some human rights concerns, including portions of the new Code of Criminal Procedure;

4. Welcomes recent announcements by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran of increased services for victims of domestic violence, as well as draft legislation that may increase penalties for perpetrators of violence against women;

5. Also welcomes steps taken to improve access to education for persons belonging to some ethnic minorities in their native languages;

6. Acknowledges the participation of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran in its second universal periodic review, and welcomes its acceptance of 130 recommendations, as well as its recent engagement with human rights treaty bodies through the submission of periodic national reports, while remaining concerned about the Government’s implementation record in respect of the recommendations that it accepted during its first universal periodic review;

7. Expresses serious concern at the alarming high frequency of and increase in the carrying-out of the death penalty, in disregard of internationally recognized safeguards, including executions undertaken without notification to the prisoner’s family members or legal counsel, and at the continuing imposition and carrying -out of the death penalty against minors and persons who at the time of their offence were under the age of 18, in violation of the obligations of the Islamic Republic of Iran under both the Convention on the Rights of the Child6 and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 2 and for crimes that do not qualify as the most serious crimes, and calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to abolish, in law and in practice, public executions, which are contrary to the 2008 prohibition of this practice by the former head of the judiciary, and executions carried out in violation of its international obligations or in the absence of respect for internationally recognized safeguards;

8. Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to ensure, in law and in practice, that no one is subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, which may include sexual violence, in conformity with the constitutional guarantees of the Islamic Republic of Iran and international obligations;

9. Urges the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to uphold, in law and in practice, procedural guarantees to ensure fair trial standards of law, including timely access to legal representation of one’s choice, the right not to be subjected to torture, cruel and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and consideration of bail and other reasonable terms for release from custody pending trial, and urges the Government to cease enforced disappearances and the widespread and systematic use of arbitrary detention;

10. Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to address the poor conditions of prisons, to eliminate the denial of access to adequate medical treatment and the consequent risk of death faced by prisoners and to put an end to the continued and sustained house arrest of leading opposition figures from the 2009 presidential elections despite serious concerns about their health, as well as the pressure exerted upon their relatives and dependants, including through arrest;

11. Also calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, including the judicial and security branches, to end widespread and serious restrictions, in law and in practice, on the right to freedom of expression, opinion, association and peaceful assembly, including through the ongoing harassment, intimidation, arbitrary detention and prosecution of, as well as the denial of access to higher education for, political opponents, human rights defenders, women’s and minority rights activists, labour leaders, students’ rights activists, academics, filmmakers, journalists, bloggers, social media users, religious leaders, artists, lawyers, recognized and unrecognized religious minorities and their families, and urges the Government to release persons arbitrarily detained for the legitimate exercise of these rights, to consider rescinding unduly harsh sentences, including the death penalty and long-term exile, for exercising such fundamental freedoms and to end reprisals against individuals cooperating with the United Nations human rights mechanisms;

12. Strongly urges the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to eliminate, in law and in practice, all forms of discrimination and other human rights violations against women and girls, to take measures to ensure protection for women and girls against violence, to address the alarming incidence of child, early and forced marriage, to promote women’s participation in decision-making processes and, while recognizing the high enrolment of women in all levels of education in the Islamic Republic of Iran, to lift restrictions on women’s equal access to all aspects of education and women’s equal participation in the labour market and in all aspects of economic, cultural, social and political life;

13. Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to eliminate, in law and in practice, all forms of discrimination and other human rights violations against persons belonging to ethnic, linguistic or other minorities, including but not limited to Arabs, Azeris, Balochis and Kurds and their defenders;

14. Expresses serious concern about ongoing severe limitations and restrictions on the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or beli ef and restrictions on the establishment of places of worship, as well as attacks against places of worship and burial, as well as other human rights violations, including but not limited to harassment, persecution and incitement to hatred that lead to vio lence against persons belonging to recognized and unrecognized religious minorities, including Christians, Jews, Sufi Muslims, Sunni Muslims, Zoroastrians and members of the Baha’i faith and their defenders, and calls on the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to release the seven Baha’i leaders declared by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to have been arbitrarily detained since 2008, and to eliminate, in law and in practice, all forms of discrimination, including the closure of businesses, and other human rights violations against persons belonging to recognized and unrecognized religious minorities;

15. Urges the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to launch a comprehensive accountability process in response to cases of serious human rights violations, including those involving the Iranian judiciary and security agencies and those following the 2009 presidential elections, and calls on the Government to end impunity for such violations;

16. Strongly urges the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to ensure credible, transparent and inclusive parliamentary elections in 2016, and to allow all candidates to stand in a manner consistent with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights1 and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights2 in order to guarantee the free expression of the will of the Iranian people, and to that end calls upon the Government to allow independent national and international observation;

17. Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to implement its obligations under those human rights treaties to which it is already a party, to withdraw any reservations that it has made where such reservations are overly general, imprecise or could be considered incompatible with the object and purpos e of the treaty, to consider acting upon the concluding observations concerning the Islamic Republic of Iran adopted by the bodies of the international human rights treaties to which it is a party and to consider ratifying or acceding to the international human rights treaties to which it is not already a party;

18. Also calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to engage with international human rights mechanisms by:

(a) Cooperating fully with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, including by accepting the repeated requests made by the Special Rapporteur to visit the country in order to carry out his mandate;

(b) Cooperating with other special mechanisms, including by facilitating long-standing requests for access to the country from thematic special procedures mandate holders, whose access to its territory has been restricted or denied, despite the standing invitation issued by the Islamic Republic of Iran, without imposing undue conditions upon those visits;

(c) Implementing all accepted universal periodic review recommendations from its first cycle, in 2010, and its second cycle, in 2014, with the full and genuine participation of independent civil society and other stakeholders in the implementation process;

(d) Building upon the engagement of the Islamic Republic of Iran with the universal periodic review process by continuing to explore cooperation on human rights and justice reform with the United Nations, including the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights;

(e) Following through on its commitment to establish an independent national human rights institution, made in the context of its first universal periodic review by the Human Rights Council, with due regard for the recommendation of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;

19. Further calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to translate the pledges made by the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran with respect to human rights concerns into concrete action that results in demonstrable improvements as soon as possible and to ensure that its national laws are consistent with its obligations under international human rights law and that they are implemented in accordance with its international obligations;

20. Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to address the substantive concerns highlighted in the reports of the Secretary-General and the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, as well as the specific calls to action found in previous resolutions of the General Assembly, and to respect fully its human rights obligations in law and in practice;

21. Strongly encourages the relevant thematic special procedures mandate holders to pay particular attention to, with a view to investigating and reporting on, the human rights situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran;

22. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly at its seventy-first session on the progress made in the implementation of the present resolution, including options and recommendations to improve its implementation, and to submit an interim report to the Human Rights Council at its thirty-first session;

23. Decides to continue its examination of the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran at its seventy-first session under the item entitled “Promotion and protection of human rights”.

Original document

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SFH| Khawari/Barbari – Diskriminierung und Frage der Staatsbürgerschaft

Iran

Khawari/Barbari – Diskriminierung und Frage der Staatsbürgerschaft
Auskunft der SFH-Landeranalyse, Adrian Schuster, 11. Februar 2015, 9 Seiten.

Free Them Now: End Arbitrary House Arrests of Green Movement Leaders

The Iranian Judiciary and Iran’s National Security Council should put an immediate end to four years of extrajudicial house arrest of Green Movement leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi and Zahra Rahnavard, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today.

The Campaign also seeks to call attention to the plight of hundreds of prisoners of conscience who remain in Iranian prisons, many of them since the crackdown on the peaceful protests that followed the disputed 2009 presidential election in Iran, with the Free Them Now initiative launched today.

“The effective imprisonment of opposition political candidates for over four years without charge is an obscene miscarriage of justice and a violation of Iranian and international law,” said Hadi Ghaemi, the executive director of the Campaign.

Iranian authorities initially ordered the house arrest of former presidential candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, and their wives Zahra Rahnavard and Fatemeh Karroubi, in the week of February 14-21, 2011, after the Green Movement leaders publicly called for demonstrations in support of the popular uprisings at that time known as the “Arab Spring.” While Fatemeh Karroubi was eventually released, the other three have remained under house arrest without charges or prosecution since that time. Karroubi and Mousavi have also been denied critically needed medical treatment during this period of effective incarceration.

In recent months, Mehdi Karroubi has called on Iranian parliamentarian Ali Motahari to seek justice for the opposition leaders. Motahari, who is the highest ranking person in government to decry the detention of these three leaders, sent an open letter to the Head of the Iranian Judiciary, Sadegh Larijani, on January 4, 2015, that called the continuation of the house arrests illegal and demanded a fair and public trial for Karroubi and Mousavi.

In the letter Motahari wrote, “You can hold a fair public trial without fear of an imaginary sedition.” Iranian officials have consistently referred to the peaceful protests that followed the disputed 2009 presidential election in Iran as “sedition.” Motahari’s personal website was reportedly blocked a day after it published his letter.

Iranian officials claim that the decision to put these three leaders under house arrest was made by the previous administration’s National Security Council, a political body that lies outside the Judiciary. President Rouhani now serves as the head of the National Security Council, and yet, despite prior pledges concerning “the necessity of ending the house arrest” of these three leaders, he has yet to take any tangible public action towards this end, well into the second year of his term. On February 6, 2015, Iran’s Minister of Justice Mostafa Pourmohammadi stated that the issue of the house arrests is not on the “agenda” of the government, President Rouhani’s cabinet, or the National Security Council.

“Rouhani campaigned on a platform of championing citizens’ rights; there are few greater rights than protection against imprisonment without charge, access to counsel, or any other semblance of due process,” said Ghaemi. “As head of the National Security Council, President Rouhani has the power to release these three leaders and likely wields even more power than the Judiciary on this matter. His lack of attention to these cases calls into question his commitment to this issue.”

The Campaign’s call for the release of the three Green Movement leaders, as well as for the release of the hundreds of political prisoners who remain in Iranian jails, adds to the repeated entreaties of the UN Secretary General and other UN human rights bodies, leading human rights organizations worldwide, prominent Iranian activists, and governments around the globe who have called for the immediate release of these three leaders and all prisoners of conscience in Iran.

“The international community should make it clear to the authorities in Tehran that Iran’s international rehabilitation and reintegration is contingent upon the release of these three leaders and the hundreds of political prisoners languishing in Iranian prisons,” said Gissou Nia, the Campaign’s deputy director.

The Campaign will be highlighting the cases of individual prisoners of conscience, as part of its Free Them Nowinitiative. Show your support by visiting “Free Them Now” and tweeting under the hashtag #FreeThemNow.

UN, Europe aiding execution of drug offenders in Iran: rights groups

Report shows how UN aid comes with targets encouraging death sentences

Five people hang limply from the nooses after they were executed in Iran’s holy second city of Mashhad, on 01 August 2007 (AFP)

Six international human rights groups on Wednesday urged the United Nations to cease its funding for counter-narcotics police operations in Iran until Tehran abolishes the death penalty for drug offenses.

In a jointly-signed letter the groups said that freezing aid – most of which comes from European governments – is justified because of “the widening gulf between Iran’s rhetoric and the realities of its justice system.”

One year after the Iranian presidential election of June 2013, and despite improvements in relations with the West, the use of the death penalty in Iran is higher now than in two decades.

Iran executes more prisoners than any other country except China, with 500 to 625 executed last year according to United Nations estimates. At least half of the condemned were convicted of drug trafficking.

Under international law, Iran and other countries with the death penalty are required to impose it only for the “most serious crimes,” which do not include drug offenses.

In Iran 70-80% of executions are for drug offences. National law stipulates that the punishment can be handed down for possession of as little as 30g of narcotics.

Four Iranians hang limply from the nooses during public execution in the southern city of Shiraz, on 05 September 2007 (AFP)

Europe involved

For many years European nations have seen Iran and Pakistan as important partners in the “war on drugs”, as both countries represent critical supply routes for traffickers looking to transport heroin.

A report by Reprieve, a UK-based charity and one of the letter’s signatories, highlights how European governments, through funding anti-narcotic operations administered by the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), have facilitated thousands of executions in Iran, many of which are handed down to women and children as well as foreign nationals.

The report, European aid for executions, found that millions of dollars worth of funding – used to train and equip Iran’s anti-narcotics police with body-scanners, sniffer dogs, night-vision goggles, and all-terrain vehicles – routinely comes with targets encouraging arrests likely to result in death sentences, despite commitments from the UN and many donor nations to encourage global abolition of the death penalty.

“You look at those on death row in these two places and they are never the cartel kingpins but the poorest and most vulnerable, including children and people who are mentally ill or have learning difficulties,” said Maya Foa, Reprieve’s lead investigator.

“It is utterly hypocritical of countries like Britain to call for worldwide abolition of the death penalty and then support policies in breach of its own human rights rules that encourage the round-up and execution of scapegoats and mules,” she said.

“The UN and EU countries need to be unequivocal in their stance against the death penalty – and that includes ending the anti-narcotics funding that so often leads to executions.”

Some European states have stopped funding drug police in Iran. Acknowledging that the “donations are leading to executions,” Denmark pulled its funding in April 2013.

Executions increasing

Even though some senior Iranian officials have spoken out against capital punishment for drug crimes, there have been signs that the pace of executions has accelerated this year.

On Dec. 4, Mohammad Javad Larijani, the secretary of Iran’s Human Rights Council, said in an interview with the France 24 news channel that “nobody is happy” about the number of executions and that he would like to see Iran’s drug punishment softened. “We are crusading to change this law,” he said.

But Rights groups say in their letter that a few days before Mr. Larijani’s interview, 18 convicted offenders had been hanged in Iran, and that this year at least 318 had been put to death, a pace that would surpass the 331 drug convicts executed in 2013.

This increase in the execution rate belies Mr. Larijani’s reassuring rhetoric and U.N.O.D.C.’s lauding of ‘potentially favorable developments’ on this issue,” reads the letter signed by Human Rights WatchReprieveIran Human Rights, the World Coalition Against the Death PenaltyHarm Reduction International and the Abdorrahman Boroumand Foundation.

Home to one of the most prolific flow of drugs in the world – a flood of heroin and opium bound for the Persian Gulf and Europe – Iran has for decades fought a battle against drugs that its leaders see as religiously inspired, saying it is their Islamic duty to prevent drug abuse.

Thousands of Iranian law enforcement agents have been killed in the fight against drugs often moved across its porous eastern border with Afghanistan, the world’s largest illicit opium and cannabis producer.

Iranian authorities are seizing the highest amounts of opiates and heroin worldwide, according to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, which has advised Iran throughout the period. Iran has over two million addicts, the most in the world.

An instrument of power

Human rights groups say the deaths are designed to spread fear rather than curb the drug trade.

“These executions, every now and again in public, are a demonstration of power and brutality, they send a very clear message to people who are watching, that is what we are able and willing to do,” said Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, a professor of medicine and leading Iranian human rights activist.

“ISIS use the same method; is it very efficient way of spreading fear and terror and keeping control. It’s the strongest instrument of power the Iranian authorities have.”

War orphans are often forced to carry drugs such as heroin and crystal meth between Afghanistan and Iran. Reports suggest some are sentenced to death without appearing in court.

In April 2014, Jannat Mir, a 15-year-old boy from Afghanistan, was hanged in a prison in Isfahan, Iran after being charged with smuggling heroin across the Afghan-Iranian border.

“Jannat Mir was a 9th grade schoolboy who left Afghanistan for Iran two years ago,” his brother Nazok told Azadi Radio, an Afghan affiliate of US-funded Radio Liberty.

“He didn’t have access to a lawyer and the Iranian authorities didn’t allow the family to take the body back to Afghanistan. So they had to bury Jannat Mir in Isfahan.”

Since 2011, France has co-funded a $5.4 million project to strengthen the capacity of counter-narcotics officers along the 1000 km frontier where Jannat Mir was arrested.

A month before Jannat was killed, in Vienna, Yuri Fedotov, the United Nations‘ drug czar, made a point of applauding the Iranians‘ effort to combat drug trafficking. „Iran takes a very active role to fight against illicit drugs.“ Fedotov told reporters. „It is very impressive.“

Poppy production in neighbouring Afghanistan is booming; this year, its export are expected to account for 90 percent of the global heroin trade, and much of that will flow westward, through Iran, and end up in European markets. Iran has over two million addicts, the most in the world.

Since 1979, Iran has executed at least 10,000 alleged drug traffickers caught by the Anti-Narcotics Police. Iran lies on a major drug route between Afghanistan, Europe and Gulf states. Every year, it burns about 100 tons of seized narcotics as a symbol of its determination to fight drugs.

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