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Twenty-Eighth Session of the Human Rights Council, Geneva, 2 to 27 March 2015

The UK delivers a statement on the human rights situation in Iran during the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Iran, Dr Ahmed Shaheed,16 March 2015.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The UN building in Geneva
The Human Rights Council takes place at the Palais des Nations, Geneva

Mr President,

The United Kingdom would like to thank the Special Rapporteur, Dr Ahmed Shaheed, for his report and presentation to the Committee and supports the statement on behalf of the EU.

Mr Rapporteur, the United Kingdom strongly supports your mandate and your role. We continue to be deeply concerned by the human rights situation in Iran.

We remain concerned about the increase in the number of executions you refer to in your report, including the fact that 2014 saw the highest number of executions in 12 years. We fully support your recommendations that there should be a ban on the practice of juvenile executions and that Iran should align its practices with its obligations under international law.

The United Kingdom also supports your recommendation that the Iranian authorities should immediately nullify the death sentences against all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, whose alleged actions do not constitute a serious crime under international law.

The United Kingdom supports your emphasis on the importance of the right to freely associate and assemble with like-minded groups or individuals, and to promote peaceful ideas and activities. We agree with your recommendation that non-governmental organisations, including unregistered associations should be allowed to function freely, and that their members should be free to operate in a safe environment. The United Kingdom joins you in calling on the authorities to prosecute and sentence appropriately all officials found responsible for illegal detentions, and the torture and ill-treatment of detainees.

The United Kingdom remains deeply concerned by the treatment of all religious minorities in Iran, including the Baha’i and Christian communities. Do you assess that the situation for religious minorities in Iran is changing?

Your report mentions the proposed legislation concerning women and girls’ sexual and reproductive rights. What do you assess will be the effect on women’s physical, social and mental well-being, if this legislation is passed?

Thank you.

Published 16 March 2015