[QODLink]
Middle East
UN says secret executions widespread in Iran
Report says executions carried out without knowledge or presence of inmates' lawyers or families.
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2011 09:51
A demonstrator dressed as a victim of a stoning execution protests in Berlin, Germany [File: GALLO/GETTY]

Hundreds of prisoners have been secretly executed in Iran, according to a new UN report which details growing human rights abuses in the Islamic republic.

The report, obtained by the AFP news agency, said 200 officially announced executions had taken place in 2011 with at least 83, including those of three political prisoners, in January alone.

Highlighting a jail in Mashhad, in eastern Iran, the report said "authorities reportedly conducted more than 300 secret executions at Vakilabad prison in 2010".

"It has also been reported that at least 146 secret executions have taken place to date in 2011," it said.

"Vakilabad officials, in violation of Iranian law, allegedly carried out the executions without the knowledge or presence of the inmates' lawyers or families and without prior notification to those executed."

The findings were compiled by Ahmed Shaheed, the new UN special rapporteur on the human rights situation in Iran.

Shaheed, who assumed responsibility for the mandate on August 1, billed it as an interim report cataloguing the most recent trends in the human rights situation in Iran.

He also noted that four per cent of executions stipulated no charges, that 100 juveniles were on death row, and that more than 100 executions this year alone were for drug-related offences.

The report, which is to be presented to the UN General Assembly on Wednesday, details a raft of abuses from the denial of women's rights to torture, but the most shocking data was the skyrocketing rate of executions.

Human Rights Watch counted 388 executions in Iran in 2010, while Amnesty International put the figure at 252, ranking the Islamic republic second only to China in the number of people put to death last year.

Tehran says the death penalty is essential to maintain law and order, and that it is applied only after exhaustive judicial proceedings.

Murder, rape, armed robbery, drug trafficking and adultery are among the crimes punishable by death in Iran.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Israel's Operation Protective Edge is the third major offensive on the Gaza Strip in six years.
Muslims and Arabs in the US say they face discrimination in many areas of life, 13 years after the 9/11 attacks.
At one UN site alone, approximately four children below the age of five are dying each day.
Featured
A handful of agencies that provide tours to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea say business is growing.
A political power struggle masquerading as religious strife grips Nigeria - with mixed-faith couples paying the price.
The current surge in undocumented child migrants from Central America has galvanized US anti-immigration groups.
Absenteeism among doctors at government hospitals is rife, prompting innovative efforts to ensure they turn up for work.
Marginalised and jobless, desperate young men in Nairobi slums provide fertile ground for al-Shabab.
join our mailing list