Iran: UN General Assembly deplores persistent human rights violations

Yesterday, the third committee of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution expressing its deep concern about “ongoing and recurring” violations of human rights in Iran, notably the alarming high frequency of executions. UN member states call on the Iranian government to abolish execution of minors, abolish torture, eliminate all forms of discrimination and other human rights violations against women and deepen its engagement with UN human rights mechanisms, amongst other things.

The adoption of this resolution comes as the Iranian Government has been supposedly displaying signs of change following the election of President Hassan Rouhani in June 2013 and his taking of office on 3 August 2013. FIDH, and its member organisations the League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran (LDDHI), and the Defenders of Human Rights Centre (DHRC), believe the change of government has had no impact on the human rights situation so far.

«Isolated ’good will’ gestures, including the release of Ms. Nasrin Sotoudeh last September, do not affect the overall continued repression and human rights violations, not to mention the ongoing imprisonment of other human rights defenders, journalists or trade unionists», said Karim Lahidji, FIDH President.

«Pledges to improve human rights conditions do not result in an improvement of the human rights situation in practice. The escalation in the number of executions is the worst example of the Iranian regime’s ongoing violation of human rights», added Shirin Ebadi, DHRC president.

FIDH, DHRC and LDDHI, particularly welcome the fact that the new resolution includes many concerns and recommendations submitted to UN member states by our organisations in early October, in which we outlined gross violations of human rights that continue to take place in Iran.

Ahmed Shaheed, UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, noted that Iranian authorities had executed 724 people in 18 months, between January 2012 and June 2013, including dozens after Rouhani was elected in June.

The resolution was approved by 83 countries. 36 voted against and 62 abstained.

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