UN expert slams Iran’s child executions
UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran Javaid Rehman also told the UN General Assembly’s human rights committee that he has “credible information” there are at least 90 child offenders on death row in Iran.
Rehman expressed deep concern at the overall use of the death penalty in the Islamic republic, saying its execution rate “remains one of the highest in the world” even after a drop from 507 in 2017 to 253 last year.
So far this year, “conservative estimates indicate that at least 173 executions have been carried out,” he said.
He welcomed an amendment to an Iranian anti-narcotics law in 2017 that led to the reduction in executions last year, but said “there is more work to be done.”
He also said he was encouraged by the “enhanced dialogue” between Iranian authorities and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights “on the administration of justice and child offender executions.”
As for the overall human rights situation in Iran over the past year, Rehman cited a number of “distressing factors,” including a declining economic situation that he said was “worsened by the impact of sanctions, with serious consequences for the realization of economic and social rights.”
The US has been ratcheting up sanctions on Tehran since US President Donald Trump withdrew last year from Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.
Washington contends Iran is not complying with the accord amid new questions about its activities raised by the UN atomic watchdog and is urging other countries to also step up pressure on Tehran.
Against that economic backdrop, Rehman said, those calling for respect of human rights “have been intimidated, harassed, arrested and detained.”
“Between September 2018 and July 2019, at least eight prominent lawyers were arrested for defending political prisoners and human rights defenders, many of whom have received lengthy sentences,” he said.
Read more at: Taipei Times
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