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According to a report presented Tuesday by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Iran implemented more than 100 people in the first 3 months of 2022, continuing an alarming upward trend. Trying to speak before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, UN deputy civil rights chief Nada Al-Nashif introduced Guterres’ latest report on Iran, condemning the country’s rising number of executions.
While 260 people were executed in 2020, at least 310 people were executed in 2021, along with at least 14 women, according to her, who added that the trend had continued this year.
She claimed that between January 1 and March 20, “at least 105 people were executed,” many of whom did belong to minority groups.
Nashif stated that Guterres’ report expressed grave concern about the rise in executions for minor crimes, including drug-related offences.
“The death penalty is still being imposed on the basis of charges that do not amount to’most serious crimes,’ and in ways that are inconsistent with fair trial standards,” she told the council.
According to Nashif, 52 people condemned to death on drug-related charges were converted to Shiraz prison for implementation in March.
She also expressed concern about the sustained use of the capital punishment for juvenile offenders, which is illegal under international law.
‘Use of excessive force’ –
According to her, at least two people who have committed their alleged crimes as juveniles were executed between August 2021 and March 2022, and more than 85 young delinquents remain on death row.
“In a positive development, the Supreme Court decided in February 2022 to revoke the death penalty against a child offender who had been on death row for 18 years,” Nashif continued.
The deputy rights chief also condemned other human rights violations in Iran, particularly in response to recent protests over a variety of significant social, political, and economic challenges.
“Excessive use of force is the authorities’ default response to handling assemblies,” she said.
“During protests in April and May 2022, at least 55 people were arrested, including teachers, lawyers, labour rights defenders, artists, and academics, many of whom are facing national security charges.”
She added that no steps have been taken to date to establish accountability for offences committed during the nationwide protests in November 2019.
Unnecessary deaths have occurred as a result of excessive force used by authorities against border courier service, peaceful protesters, and those in detention, according to Nashif.
“The scale of deaths in detention… is gravely concerning,” she stated.
Iran’s deputy permanent representative in Geneva, Mehdi Ali Abadi, slammed the report, saying it was based on a malicious mandate imposed on the UN by Western countries to stigmatise Iran, and that it was “biassed by default.”