(Geneva) The UN Special Rapporteur on Iran on Monday denounced possible “crimes against humanity” in that country, in particular after the death of Mahsa Amini, who had been arrested for violating the dress code.
Iran’s human rights abuses are ‘the worst’ the country has seen in four decades, says Javaid Rehman, presenting a new report to the Human Rights Council (HRC) of the United Nations in Geneva.
“The scale and gravity of the violations committed by the Iranian authorities, particularly since the death of Ms. Amini, suggest that international crimes have been committed, including the crimes against humanity of murder, imprisonment, enforced disappearances, torture, rape and sexual violence, and persecution,” he added.
Iran has been rocked by a protest movement since the September 16 death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd. Authorities say hundreds of people, including members of the security forces, have been killed in the context of the protests, which have diminished in scale in recent weeks.
In his report, the Rapporteur, who is mandated by the HRC but does not speak on behalf of the United Nations, stressed that the death of Mahsa Amini “is not an isolated event, but the latest in a long series of extreme violence committed by the Iranian authorities against women and girls”.
“The responsibility of senior officials […] therefore cannot be ignored,” he told the HRC, which in late November opened, despite opposition from Tehran and Beijing, an international investigation into the crackdown. demonstrations, in order to gather evidence of violations and possibly prosecute those responsible.
He also pointed to torture committed against children in detention, and the arrest of dozens of human rights defenders, including at least 600 students, 45 lawyers and 576 civil society activists.
Iranian authorities have so far executed at least four people in connection with the protests and sentenced at least 17 protesters to death while more than 100 face charges that could carry the death penalty, according to the Rapporteur.