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March 15, 2017 12:41 pm

It’s Time for Action Against Iran’s Human Rights Abuses

avatar by Amir Basiri

Email a copy of "It’s Time for Action Against Iran’s Human Rights Abuses" to a friend
Preparations for a public hanging in Iran. Photo: Wiki Commons.

Preparations for a public hanging in Iran. Photo: Wiki Commons.

Iran’s human rights record is nothing short of abysmal. Asma Jahangir, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on human rights in Iran, recently issued a report detailing scores of Iranian abuses.

The report noted an increasing number of executions — including juvenile executions and public executions (where even children witness the murders). The report also documented the use of torture and long detentions in solitary confinement, the crackdown and discrimination against ethnic and religious minorities, and the regime’s misogynist viewpoint, which has led to horrifying conditions for half of Iranian society.

And how did Iran respond to these allegations?

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Bahram Ghasemi, the Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister for Asia & Pacific Affairs, told the semi-official Fars news agency that the report was full of lies and propaganda.

“Unfortunately, her report, similar to the previous rapporteur, is based on a series of false information and incorrect prejudgments regarding Iran’s human rights situation.” Ghasemi also said that the report was based on “unreliable sources that tarnish [the] report’s integrity and credibility.”

Other Iranian officials took a similar approach.

“They should be thanking us for our human rights record … we have no rivals in this regard,” said Mohammad Javad Larijani, an Iranian conservative politician and a senior adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei on foreign affairs. Larijani also chairs the so-called “High Council for Human Rights.”

Iran’s vows of innocence came amid a public hanging in the city of Yazd in February, and another public hanging near Tehran on March 5.

Iran’s human rights violations must be meaningfully addressed by the international community. Reports are no longer good enough.

Amir Basiri (@amir_bas) is an Iranian human rights activist.

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