In March 2018, the U.N. Human Rights Council and the U.S. Mission in Geneva restated their concerns about the state of human rights in Iran, such as the rigorously restricted rights of both expression and freedom that are enforced by Iranian authorities. People are arrested and imprisoned for expressing different beliefs and the punishments for crimes include floggings and amputations. Iranian authorities have refused to allow U.N. specialists to get involved. These facts about human rights in Iran explore some of the recent and ongoing issues in the country.
Facts About Human Rights in Iran
- In the presidential elections of May 2017, President Hassan Rouhani was elected for a second term. However, he was elected due to a discriminatory election process that included the disqualification of candidates based on their gender, religion or political opinions.
- The first large-scale anti-establishment protest since 2009 happened at the end of December 2017. Many Iranians protested against the ongoing poverty, corruption and political restrictions in their country.
- In 2016, 203 people were executed by law enforcement by October. Different human rights groups also say that the number may be higher, stating that more than 437 people were killed because the majority of executions occurred during the second part of the year.
- The U.S. imposed its first injunction on Iran for violations of human rights in 2010. As a result, 10 different Iranian administrators were given financial constraints and were banned from traveling to the U.S.
- The United Nations Children’s Rights Committee stated in March 2016 that flogging continued to be used as a lawful punishment for boys and girls who had been sentenced for crimes. Despite amendments to Iran’s penal code, children were still being executed in 2016.
- Another fact about human rights in Iran is that there have been continuing restrictions on media and obstructions of foreign television stations. In addition, Iranian authorities have banned 152 journalists from making any financial transactions.
- Iranian authorities continue to restrict medical care for prisoners. These prisoners are forced to live in horrible conditions, including overcrowding, little to no hot water, insect infestations and poor food quality.
- Different intelligence organizations in Iran continuously monitor citizens’ activity on social media websites like Twitter and Facebook. Multiple civilians active on social media have been arrested for comments made on the platforms.
- Women in Iran face heavy discrimination in personal matters like child custody, marriage and divorce. A law that is still in place today is that women need a male guardian’s permission to get married, even if the woman is an adult.
- Trials in Iran continue to be unfair, including prejudices against Iranians with dual citizenship. These citizens and foreigners endure lengthy prison sentences, unfair trials and capricious arrests.
These facts about human rights in Iran shed light on the maltreatment Iranian people have to endure. President Rouhani has been in office for three years, and though he based his campaign on improving human rights conditions, the situation remains the same in Iran.
– Alyssa Hannam