New UN report decries ‘pattern’ of torture, abuse in Iranian prisons

A new United Nation report criticizes the Iranian regime for its continued crackdown on freedom of expression and restrictions on access to information, while detainees appeared to be systematically subjected to abuse, including torture, staged suicide and rape.

The report, which was published on 5th of March 2018, and drafted by Asma Jahangir human rights activist and lawyer serving as one of the UN’s best expert on the rights situation in Iran, who died at age 66 last month.

According to the report, Jahangir stated that she had seen “a worrying picture developing in the human rights situation” in Iran since her last report in August.

In the report, Jahangir the human rights advocate voiced deep concern over the recent harsh crackdown on the anti-Mulla’s protests in Iran, with more than 20 people killed and at least 1,000 arrested in a matter of days at the turn of the year.

Jahangir said she remained alarmed over the general conditions of detention in Iran. Although she was never permitted to visit Iran, she said in recent months she had met with at least six people who had fled the country “who still bore marks of torture” suffered in detention.

Jahangir also pointed to recent findings by the Freedom from Torture organisation of widespread torture during interrogations of detainees, either to extract information about them or their family and friends, and to force confessions.

Electric shocks, amputations and mental pressure

The torture methods documented included rape and other sexual violence, electric shocks, and amputations, she wrote, urging Tehran to stop such practices and hold perpetrators to account.

She suggested the government should “consider the use of modern technology to monitor detention centres to deter… torture.”

Jahangir also raised “grave concern (over) a pattern of denial of medical treatment to certain categories of detainees, especially prisoners of conscience, political prisoners and human rights defenders.”

Pointing to a number of cases where there is an “imminent threat to life,” she called on Tehran to urgently “investigate, address, and remedy such allegations.”

She also said she remained troubled by the continuing large number of executions in Iran, with 482 executions reported in the country last year, including five juvenile offenders. That number is down from 530 in 2016 and 969 in 2015, but the UN expert said she remained “alarmed,” pointing to the “consistently reported pattern of serious violations of the right to fair trial and denial of due process” in the country.

Jahangir also urged Tehran to halt the use of harsh corporal punishment, pointing out that 50 flogging sentences and five amputation sentences were reportedly carried out in the country last year.

Jahangir called for freedom and the press and online access, saying the government had closed 7 million internet addresses over the past three years.

Journalists, bloggers and internet users have been arrested, and number of the human rights activist reported that their families and relative been harassed by the regimes’ intelligent agency.

Meanwhile women, religious and ethnic minorities, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender are the main subject to discrimination

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