Panel Calls for Justice for Victims of 2019 Iranian Protest Crackdown

The Iran Atrocities Tribunal adjourned Sunday in London after hearing five days of testimony from more than 30 witnesses who alleged that Iranian authorities killed, tortured and abused thousands of their countrymen three years ago during protests against Tehran’s sudden increase in the price of gasoline.

The six-lawyer panel, formed by civil society groups but with no official international legal standing, said it had examined more than 100 written statements, videos and pictures of the mostly peaceful protests that turned violent. More submissions are yet to be reviewed, with the panel saying other witnesses have expressed interest in testifying before a final report is issued in early 2022.

Eyewitnesses to the violence blamed Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and special anti-riot forces for the attacks.

Hamid Sabi, one of the lawyers presenting the case against the Iranian authorities, said, “We hope with what we have presented so far, that world governments will consider Magnitsky sanctions against the 133 people we have alleged to be perpetrators of these heinous crimes.”

His reference to Magnitsky sanctions refers to a 2016 U.S. law that allows Washington to blacklist foreign government officials implicated in human rights abuses throughout the world.

Regina Paulose, a co-counsel to the tribunal, said the victims and survivors of the attacks “must have access to justice” under United Nations conventions.

Shadi Sadr, executive director of Justice for Iran and a co-organizer of the tribunal, said after the testimony ended, “By holding the truth to the utmost importance, the honorable panel members have devised a safe space for relatives of the victims and protesters who are accused as ‘rioters’ and ‘terrorists’ by their own state, to stand tall and with pride to voice the truth to the world.”

In a concluding statement, the tribunal said, “The killing of protesters was deliberately concealed from the world through an ‘information blackout.’”

Source: Voice of America

Also Read: ‘Atrocities Tribunal’ Says No Impunity For Iran Leaders Over 2019 Killings

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