Rights Report on Iran Highlights Executions, Political Prisoners

UNITED NATIONS, Oct 25 2012 (IPS) – More than a year into his mandate, Ahmed Shaheed, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran, told the Third Committee of the U.N. General Assembly this week that the rights situation in Iran remains critical, especially as it pertains to human rights defenders, journalists, and religious and ethnic minorities.

According to Shaheed, more than 40 Iranian journalists are in prison, along with human rights defenders like Abdolfattah Soltani, Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, and Mohammad Seifzadeh. These individuals, along with prominent activist Narges Mohammadi, were members of a human rights organisation under the direction of Nobel Peace Laureate and attorney Shirin Ebadi.

Due to government harassment, Ebadi is now forced to live outside Iran to continue her human rights advocacy.

Altogether, Shaheed’s report estimates that some 32 lawyers have been prosecuted since 2009, and that at least nine defence attorneys are currently imprisoned.

Since his appointment in June 2011, the Iranian government has refused to respond to Shaheed’s multiple requests to travel to Iran and visit prisons there, although he conducted nearly 100 interviews with sources both within and outside the country to prepare his reports.

He told I… >>>

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