Iran Slams UN 'fact-finding' protest mission as 'shameful'

Published November 25th, 2022 - 07:37 GMT
Woman in Iran protests
This UGC image posted on Twitter reportedly on October 26, 2022 shows an unveiled woman standing on top of a vehicle as thousands make their way towards Aichi cemetery in Saqez, Mahsa Amini's home town in the western Iranian province of Kurdistan, to mark 40 days since her death, defying heightened security measures as part of a bloody crackdown on women-led protests. (Photo by UGC / AFP)

Iran on Thursday slammed the adoption of a resolution by the UN Human Rights Council for the establishment of a fact-finding mission to investigate alleged human rights violations in the country related to protests that began on Sept. 16.

"The regime in Berlin, as the main provider of CWs (chemical weapons) to Saddam, and other opportunists have conducted massive HR (human rights) violations through unjust & inhumane sanctions," Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said on Twitter, referring to former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.

Amir-Abdollahian claimed that human rights mechanisms are being abused to "perpetrate more HR violations, all in the name of a farce 'solidarity' with Iranians."

"Even worse and more shameful, they're doing this for cheap domestic games. Iran, as a strong and stable country, is fully committed to human rights but won't allow foreign meddling in its internal affairs," he added.

Earlier Thursday, the UN Human Rights Council voted to establish an independent international fact-finding mission to investigate alleged human rights violations in Iran related to protests.

The council adopted the resolution with 25 votes in favor, six against and 16 abstentions.

The resolution, put forward by Germany and Iceland, calls on Iran to end "discrimination and violence against women and girls in public and private life and in law, and in practice and to uphold all human rights."

Those include the right to freedom of opinion, expression, peaceful assembly, association, and freedom of religion or belief.

Iran has been roiled by deadly protests since September after the death of a 22-year-old Iranian woman named Mahsa Amini, who was arrested by the morality police for allegedly violating the Islamic dress code.

 

Amini died in police custody, with the government blaming her death on a health condition, an explanation that has been roundly rejected by her family and demonstrators, who maintained she was murdered by police.

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The UN human rights chief on Thursday called for independent and transparent investigations into rights violations during protests in Iran, where killings are said to have passed 400 this year, and 85 people are on death row for alleged offenses committed as children.

Volker Turk, the UN high commissioner for human rights, was speaking at a special session of the Human Rights Council on Iran's "deteriorating human rights situation" following an official request by Germany and Iceland, supported by at least 49 states.

"We are now in a full-fledged human rights crisis," said Turk.

"It pains me to see what is happening in the country. The images of children killed. Of women beaten in the streets. Of people sentenced to death," he added.

The resolution put forward by Germany and Iceland calls on Iran to end "discrimination and violence against women and girls in public and private life and in law, and in practice and to uphold all human rights, including the right to freedoms of opinion, expression, and opinion, peaceful assembly, association and the right to freedom of religion or belief.”

Turk said the world has seen waves of protests over the past years, calling for justice, equality, dignity, and respect for human rights.

"They have been met with violence and repression. The unnecessary and disproportionate use of force must come to an end," said the human rights chief.

"The old methods and the fortress mentality of those who wield power simply don't work. In fact, they only aggravate the situation," he said.

Turk said that the current protests, sparked on Sept. 16 following the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, an Iranian woman, have expanded throughout the country.

"Protests have reportedly taken place in over 150 cities and 140 universities in all 31 provinces of Iran," Turk said.

"Minority regions continue to be disproportionately affected, especially in terms of casualties. Some of their representatives in Parliament have voiced criticism towards the response by the authorities to these protests," he added.

Khadijeh Karimi, deputy of Iran’s vice president for women and family affairs, addressed the council on behalf of Iran.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran deeply regrets that the Human Rights Council is abused once again by some arrogant States to antagonize a sovereign UN Member State that is fully committed to its obligation to promote and protect human rights,” she said.


© Copyright Andolu Ajansi

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