By JUBIN KATIRAIE
According to the Iran Human Rights Monitor (Iran HRM), the number of executions in Iran has increased since the presidential election in June. With the 52 executions that took place in July taking the total number for 2021 so far up to 192, it shows just how the human rights situation in Iran is worsening.
Iran HRM said, “Of these, only five have been reported by the state media. The actual number of executions in Iran is much higher. The Iranian regime carries out most executions in secret and out of the public eye. No witnesses are present at the time of execution but those who carry them out.”
One of the last countries in the world that, to this day, continues to routinely use the death penalty for crimes committed by children under the age of 18, Iran is in complete violation of its commitment to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, as well as the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
One example of this is the case of Ebrahim Shahbakhsh, a 23-year-old prisoner from Baluchi. He was executed in July by Iranian authorities, six years after his arrest on drug-related charges at the age of 17.
Of the 52 executions that took place in July, 18 were in regards to drug-related offenses, 30 were carried out for murder charges, and 2 for rape. It is unknown if the details or reason behind the final 2 executions.
Iran HRM said, “Ebrahim Raisi has become president of Iran, even though his resume is filled with crimes against the Iranian people and humanity. Shortly after his ascension was announced, Amnesty International Secretary-General Agnès Callamard criticized Raisi’s rise to the second-most powerful position in the country.”
Callamard stated that the fact that Ebrahim Raisi has been able to ascend to a presidential role instead of undergoing any investigation into his crimes against humanity over the past 4 decades is a grim reminder that impunity continues to reign supreme in Iran.
Iran HRM said, “According to Amnesty International Iran is the most prolific user of capital punishment in the region and the second worldwide after China.”
Even though government officials have admitted that the executions of inmates who have been convicted for drug-related charges are ineffective in the battle to combat drug smuggling, the Iranian government is continuing to implement death sentences for these prisoners. In fact, the executions are bringing about the reverse effect, with drug smuggling still continuing to take place.
Iran HRM is now calling upon the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN Human Rights Council, and other human rights institutions around the world to take urgent action in order to save the lives of the Iranian prisoners who are currently on death row.
Iran HRM said, “The Iranian regime’s dossier of human rights violations must be referred to the UN Security Council. The leaders and officials of the clerical regime in Iran must face justice for four decades of committing crimes against humanity.”