NGOs Call on UN Member States to Support UNGA Resolution Addressing Human Rights Abuses in Iran
(November 21, 2012) — Human rights and press freedom organizations have called on UN member states to support the resolution on the situation of human rights in Iran being voted on by the Third Committee of the 67th UN General Assembly on November 27, 2012. In calling for support for the measure, the organizations pointed to the torture and death earlier this month of Sattar Beheshti, simply for blogging on Facebook, to highlight the dire situation of human rights and freedom in Iran. Other reports indicate that as many as 81 people may have been executed in Iran in the past 10 days alone.
“In recent years, the Islamic Republic of Iran has increasingly and systematically repressed its population and committed widespread and far-ranging abuses with impunity,” wrote the authors of the letter. “Until the Islamic Republic of Iran stops its repressive practices against its people and begins cooperation and compliance with its human rights obligations, the international community has an obligation to stand up for the Iranian people and hold their government to account for its widespread transgressions.”
The resolution describes “ongoing, systematic, widespread, and serious” restrictions of freedom of association, peaceful assembly, association, and freedom of opinion and expression; the systematic targeting of human rights defenders; pervasive gender inequality and violence against women; increased discrimination and persecution of religious and ethnic minorities; persistent failure to uphold the rule of law; and ongoing severe limitations and restrictions on the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief.
In a report published by United for Iran last month, the organization called on non-Western powers, specifically South Africa, Brazil, Turkey, Indonesia, Nigeria and India to take leadership and begin supporting critical human rights resolutions on Iran. United for Iran also called on Russia and China to cease their opposition to measures aimed at bringing Iran into compliance with its international human rights obligations. “For Iran to make progress on human rights and begin the process of democratization, countries around the world, including states that enjoy close ties to Iran, must demonstrate a clear commitment to advance the legitimate democratic demands of the Iranian people,” the report stated.
Among the signatories of the letter include the Committee to Protect Journalists, Iran Human Rights, the Boroumand Foundation, the Cairo Institute for Human Rights, the Legal Resources Consortium, the International Campaign for Human Rights, Arseh Sevom, Iran Human Rights Documentation Center, and Justice for Iran.