UN-backed review shows government’s lack of commitment to human rights

Press release
en fa fr

(Paris, Geneva) The Iranian government showed its total lack of commitment to addressing serious violations of fundamental human rights during a United Nations (UN)-backed review, FIDH and its Iranian member organization League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran (LDDHI) said today.

Iran’s human rights situation was assessed during its third Universal Periodic Review (UPR) on 8 November 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. The Iranian government accepted 143 of the 329 recommendations it received from UN member states. Another 141 recommendations were not accepted and 45 were “partially supported.” The outcome of Iran’s third UPR is scheduled to be adopted today, during the 43rd session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

"Disappointingly, Tehran failed yet again to demonstrate its willingness to address serious human rights violations. Iran’s refusal to accept recommendations to respect its international human rights obligations — claiming that many of the recommendations were based on flawed assumptions and information — does an injustice to its citizens,"

Karim Lahidji, LDDHI President and FIDH Honorary President

The government did not accept 38 of the 40 recommendations related to the death penalty, including those that called for a moratorium on executions, a limit to the application of capital punishment for the most serious crimes, an end to the use of the death penalty for minors, and the ratification of the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (OP2-ICCPR).

Tehran refused to accept all recommendations that specifically called for the ratification of key international human rights treaties, including the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

The government also refused to accept recommendations that called on the authorities to end all forms of torture and to criminalize torture in national legislation, in line with international standards. While the government accepted recommendations that called on the authorities to guarantee the right to a fair trial, it failed to accept two recommendations that called on the authorities to make specific reforms to the judicial system.

The government did not support recommendations that called for the repeal of draconian laws that criminalize consensual same-sex relations, require women to wear the hijab, and restrict the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly.

Tehran also failed to support recommendations that specifically called for the release of prisoners of conscience, human rights defenders (HRDs), including human rights lawyers, and journalists who have been imprisoned for exercising their rights. In a UPR submission jointly prepared with the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) in March 2019, FIDH and LDDHI detailed the extensive repression of HRDs, including women human rights defenders (WHRDs) and human rights lawyers in Iran.

Lastly, the Iranian government failed to support recommendations to accept visits by the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, which effectively renders meaningless its acceptance of recommendations to cooperate with UN Special Procedures and other mechanisms.

FIDH and LDDHI urge the Iranian government to adhere to its obligations under human rights treaties to which Iran is a state party by immediately beginning a process of implementation of the recommendations that it did not accept or support.

Read more