UN chief concerned by rising number of executions in Iran

Expressing his “deep sadness” at the recent execution by Iran of two juvenile offenders, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today noted with concern the alarming increase in executions in the country over the last decade.

“Over 700 executions are reported to have taken place so far this year, including at least 40 public, marking the highest total recorded in the past 12 years. The majority of executions were imposed for drug-related offences – crimes that do not meet the threshold of the ‘most serious crimes’ as required by international law,” said a statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson in New York.

Last week, two juvenile offenders were executed in the country, a judgment that breeches international laws.

“The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child – both ratified by Iran – prohibits the imposition of the death penalty for crimes committed by persons below eighteen years of age,” said the statement.

The Secretary-General said that he was deeply saddened by the news of the two executions and added that it reflects a worrying trend in Iran.

He called on the Iranian Government to establish a moratorium on executions with a view to abolishing the death penalty and further reaffirmed the opposition of the United Nations to the imposition of the death penalty.

19 October 2015

Source: UN News Centre

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