January 22, 2018

NCPDA Statement – November 26, 2007

NCPDA Statement
Contact: Nasser Rashidi
Dir. Tel: 202-487-6989
November 26, 2007

U.N. Third Committee Approves Draft Resolution Expressing Serious Concern About Human Rights Situation in Iran

On October 25, United Nations Third Committee on human rights passed a draft resolution expressing “deep concern” at ongoing human rights violations in Iran. Earlier (on October 18) Amnesty International (AI) had issued a statement condemning the “deploring” human rights conditions in Iran. By October, AI had “recorded almost 250 executions since the beginning of 2007” and noted that “the true total of those put to death could be significantly higher.

Since 1991, Iran has been a party to Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Each treaty explicitly bans the execution of juveniles (who were under 18 at the time of the alleged crimes). Yet, U.N. Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial and summary or arbitrary executions reports (in his October 25th statement to the Third Committee) that “Iran executes more juveniles than any other country. Its prisons currently contain at lest 75 such juveniles who have been sentenced to death.” Over the past year, he adds, “I have written on nine occasions to the Iranian Government concerning these juveniles. I have not received a single response”. Furthermore, “mass executions have been increasingly reported this year, sometimes occurring only a short time after arrest.” At least eight women are also scheduled to be stoned to death.

Despite overwhelming evidence, Iran’s U.N. Ambassador Mohammad Khazaee sought to block a vote on the draft by proposing a motion of “no action.” The motion was defeated by a single vote, with 79 against, 78 in favor and 24 abstentions.

As diplomatic efforts to curb Iran’s rouge behavior moves at a “snail’s pace”, that government is increasingly weary of its restive population. The corresponding escalation of violence against Iranian citizens by its Revolutionary Guards highlights the clerical government’s Achilles heel. Their attempts to portray otherwise notwithstanding, mullahs depend on such oppressive measures due to lack of popular legitimacy. In reality, their interests have always been diabolically opposed to that of the Iranian nation. Mullahs are fully aware that their demise is the wish of and can only be attained by, the Iranian people.

In a statement, Canada’s U.N. Ambassador John McNee said “the sponsors looked forward to a day when the resolution is no longer necessary.” Echoing Mr. McNee’s remarks, the National Coalition of Pro-Democracy Advocates welcomes Third Committee’s action against Iran and urges all governments, NGOs, and human rights advocacy groups to hold Iran accountable for its reprehensible behavior.