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February 6, 2014 11:22 am
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Canadian Minister Compares Israel and Iran Human Rights Records

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Iran News Agency Mehr's coverage of a public hanging. Photo: Amin Rahmani / Mehr.

Iran News Agency Mehr's coverage of a public hanging. Photo: Amin Rahmani / Mehr.

Jason Kenney, Canada’s Minister of Employment, Social Development & Multiculturalism, took to Twitter on Thursday to reinforce an official statement from John Baird, Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister, that condemned human rights abuses in Iran, by comparing the Islamic Republic’s record to that of Israel.

In the tweet, Kenney said that Iran executes gays, while Israel protects them, (Tel Aviv hosts the only gay pride parade in the Middle East); that Iran executes people of the Bahai faith, while Israel hosts them (its headquarters are in Haifa); and Iran executes thousands, while Israel’s last execution was in 1962. (That execution, on May 31, was of Adolf Eichmann, the Nazi SS officer who organized Adolf Hitler’s “final solution.”)

On Tuesday, Baird had said, in a statement, that “Canada is deeply troubled by reports of a drastic surge in executions in Iran. At least 50 executions have been reported in the first month of 2014 alone. Last year, Iran executed more than 600 people. We will judge Iran by its actions, not just by its words. At this rate, Iran is on track, once again, to have one of the highest rates of execution in the world.”

Last week, Iran’s semi-official state news agency Mehr published photos of a gruesome public hanging in Tehran, where the site had become a spectacle for many onlookers.

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“Despite the electoral promises made by President Hassan Rouhani to improve people’s lives, Iranians continue to live in fear of arbitrary imprisonment, torture and execution by the clerical regime,” Baird said. “Canada deplores Iran’s continued disregard for due process and human rights violations against its people. The Iranian people deserve the dignity, respect and freedom that they have been denied for too long.”


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