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Iran has been called upon to stop its "horrific wave of executions."
Middle East World News

Iran has been called upon to stop its “horrific wave of executions.”

In September 2022, Mohammad Ghobadlou, aged 23 and reportedly suffering from a mental health condition, was taken into custody for fatally hitting and killing a police officer during a protest near Tehran.

In the wake of Mahsa Amini’s death while in police custody, numerous individuals across the country marched in protest. Amini had been arrested by Iran’s morality police for allegedly not wearing her headscarf correctly.

Mr. Ghobadlou was accused of committing “earthly corruption” and given a death sentence.

Against capital punishment

During his daily briefing from New York, UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric stated that they persist in opposing and denouncing the implementation of the death penalty, in response to a question from a reporter.

The execution of Mr. Ghobadlou, who had a “long-term psychological disability”, was strongly condemned by four experts chosen by the UN Human Rights Council.

A statement was released calling on Iran to abide by international law and cease the “terrible execution” of demonstrators.

Lawyers are not granted access.

They stated that they are concerned about the reports of unjust trial procedures in the case of Mr. Ghobadlou and other cases. These procedures did not meet the standards of due process and fair trial as outlined by international human rights laws that Iran is obligated to follow.

The panel of experts also raised significant alarm over reliable evidence indicating that individuals who were put to death were not granted the opportunity to consult with lawyers while they were held captive and on trial.

The experts expressed their shock over the execution being carried out by the authorities despite the lack of information given to Mr. Ghobadlou and his lawyer regarding the legal grounds for the execution.

The number of executions has reached an all-time high, setting a new record.

According to reports, four individuals in Iran are in danger of being executed soon. This includes two men who participated in the country’s widespread protests. Additionally, 15 other individuals are facing the possibility of the death penalty.

The experts expressed their distress over the alarming increase in executions occurring in Iran. They pointed out that a total of 834 individuals were executed in 2023, which included eight individuals connected to the nationwide protests. The experts implore the Iranian Government to put an end to this appalling trend of executions.

The specialists also urged the Government to guarantee the autonomy of the legal system and to strictly adhere to all international human rights standards for due process and fair trials in cases involving capital punishment.

Additionally, they called upon the authorities to reassess the application and execution of the death penalty, and guarantee that it is reserved solely for the gravest offenses as outlined by international regulations.

About Special Rapporteurs

The four individuals who released the statement are Special Rapporteurs with specific responsibilities regarding human rights in Iran, unlawful killings, judicial independence, and the right to physical and mental well-being.

The members were chosen by the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva and are not employed by the UN or compensated for their duties.