For Immediate Release
UN General Assembly: Make Iran Human Rights a Priority
Support Resolution to End Abuses
(New York, November 17, 2015) – The United Nations member countries should vote in favor of Resolution A/C.3/70/L.45 on the promotion and protection of human rights in Iran, Human Rights Watch said today in a joint letter signed by 36 human rights and other organizations.
Citing continuing rights violations in the country, the resolution calls on the government of Iran to meet its domestic and international obligations. The vote is scheduled for November 19, 2015, during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
“The Iranian authorities shouldn’t think they are getting a pass on human rights just because the nuclear accord has been signed,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Passing this resolution will send the message that the world has not forgotten about the country’s ongoing human rights abuses.”
Despite statements from officials in the Rouhani administration indicating that it would address some abuses, there have been no significant improvements in Iran’s human rights record during 2015. The judiciary has issued an alarming number of death sentences, with the authorities executing at least 830 people, including juvenile offenders, between January and November. Many of these executions were for nonviolent crimes for which international law clearly prohibits the death penalty, such as drug-related offenses.
The government also routinely violates the rights to free expression, assembly, and religion. Security forces detain and hand out unfair sentences to journalists, writers, activists, and artists for peacefully expressing their views. The authorities have similarly detained and otherwise harassed groups such as teachers for peacefully organizing and advocating on behalf of their profession and their students. The authorities’ widespread discrimination against women in law and practice ranges from applying unequal personal status laws to barring women from public spaces such as sports stadiums.
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