Iran: the UN concerned by the imminent application of a sentence of amputation of fingers to eight detainees


Eight men convicted of robbery in Iran face imminent finger amputation as part of their sentence. Seven of these eight men, currently detained in a prison on the outskirts of Tehran, were summoned on Wednesday to be transferred to another establishment for their amputation.

“Seven of these men are currently being held in Greater Tehran’s central prison and the whereabouts of one of them, Hadi Rostami, who was transferred from prison on June 12, is unknown.” press release, Ravina Shamdasani, spokesperson for the OHCHR.

The eight people, seven of whom were identified as Hadi Rostami, Mehdi Sharafian, Mehdi Shahivand, Amir Shirmard, Morteza Jalili, Ebrahim Rafiei, Yaghoub Fazeli Koushki, were sentenced to “have four fingers of the right hand completely cut off so that ‘only the palm of the hand and the thumb remain’.

In 20 years, at least 237 people sentenced to amputations in Iran

According to the services of High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet, all these detainees are likely to be transferred to Evin prison in Tehran. “There are reports that a guillotine for cutting fingers was installed there recently,” Ms Shamdasani added.

This machine would have been used on May 31 to amputate the fingers of another prisoner. A first attempt to transfer the men took place on June 11, but it was halted due to resistance from other prisoners.

Iran’s Penal Code, based on Islamic law, provides for amputation for crimes such as repeat theft.

OHCHR calls on Iran to urgently review its criminal sanctions to remove all forms of corporal punishment, including amputations, flogging and stoning, in accordance with its obligations under international human rights law and recommendations of United Nations human rights mechanisms.

According to the UN, Iranian civil society organizations indicate that at least 237 people, mostly from the poorest sections of society, were sentenced to amputations in Iran between January 1, 2000 and September 24. 2020. These sentences were carried out in at least 129 cases.

More than 100 people executed in Iran since the start of 2022

Iran is a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, article 7 of which prohibits torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment. “As the United Nations Human Rights Committee, which oversees the implementation of the Covenant, has made clear, the prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment includes forms of punishment bodily injury,” concluded the OHCHR spokeswoman.

In addition, Iran executed more than 100 people in the first three months of 2022, according to a report by the UN Secretary General presented yesterday Tuesday, June 21, 2022.

“Between January 1 and March 20, at least 105 people were executed, including many people belonging to ethnic minorities,” UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al said in Geneva. -Nashif, presenting to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ latest report on Iran. In March, 52 people were transferred to Shiraz prison to be executed for drug trafficking.

“While 260 people were executed in 2020, at least 310 people were executed in 2021, including at least 14 women,” she added. “The death penalty continues to be imposed for acts that are not among the most serious crimes, which violates international standards for a fair trial”, argued the Deputy High Commissioner.

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