Iran Focus: Geneva, Mar. 24 – The top United Nations human rights body on Thursday appointed a new Special Rapporteur to investigate spiralling human rights violations in Iran.
Geneva, Mar. 24 – The top United Nations human rights body on Thursday appointed a new Special Rapporteur to investigate spiralling human rights violations in Iran.
The decision by the UN Human Rights Council to appoint a Special Rapporteur was supported by the US and most European countries. Other co-sponsors of the resolution were Chile, Columbia, Maldives, Panama, Peru and Zambia. It marks the first time since 2002 that a Special Rapporteur has been appointed for Iran.
Maryam Rajavi, head of the opposition coalition National Council of Resistance of Iran, welcomed the decision to appoint a Special Rapporteur, saying it was a “clear sign” of the international community’s “awakening” regarding severe and systematic violations of human rights in Iran.
Amnesty International says it has recorded over 200 executions in Iran in 2010 that were acknowledged by the authorities. Credible reports suggest that hundreds more people were executed in secret, the group said on Tuesday. The rate of executions in Iran has sharply increased since December 2010. So far in 2011, over 100 people have been executed.
The first Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on Iran was approved in 1984. The first Rapporteur was Andres Aguilar from Venezuela. After his resignation in 1986, Reynaldo Galindo Pohl, a law professor and human rights expert from Venezuela was appointed to the position. Following Galindo Pohl’s departure in 1994, the Commission appointed Maurice Copithorne, a noted Canadian jurist, as its Special Rapporteur on Iran. His mandate ended in 2002 and was not renewed.
The Human Rights Council, the successor to the Commission on Human Rights, is comprised of 47 countries.