• Iran must release jailed Sakharov laureate Nasrin Sotoudeh 
  • Egypt must end mass trials and stop condemning people under 18 to death 
  • Tanzania must stop harassing and suppressing LGBTI people  

MEPs urge Iran to release jailed Sakharov laureate Nasrin Sotoudeh, and deplore state attacks on human rights defenders and LGTBI people in Egypt and Tanzania.

On Thursday, the European Parliament adopted three resolutions taking stock of the human rights situation in Iran, Egypt and Tanzania.

Iran

The European Parliament calls on the Iranian government to immediately and unconditionally release imprisoned human rights lawyer and Sakharov laureate Nasrin Sotoudeh, who has been charged by a Revolutionary Court with ‘espionage in hiding’. MEPs commend Ms Sotoudeh for her courage and commitment, and urge Iran’s judiciary system to respect due process and fair trials and disclose information on the charges against her.

The resolution also expresses its sympathy for and solidarity with the campaign against the country’s mandatory dress code and condemns the detention of women who removed their headscarves as part of the campaign. The resolution was adopted by 552 votes in favour, 6 against with 38 abstentions. The adopted text will be available here (13.12.2018).

Egypt

MEPs strongly condemn the continuous restrictions on fundamental democratic rights in Egypt, including on freedom of expression, association and assembly, political pluralism and the rule of law. They also call on the Egyptian authorities to drop all existing baseless criminal investigations into the work of non-governmental organisations.

The resolution, adopted by a show of hands, finally expresses MEPs’ serious concern at the mass trials by Egyptian courts and the large number of death sentences and long prison terms handed down, including against people under 18 at the time of their alleged offence . The adopted text will be available here (13.12.2018).

Tanzania

Tanzanian authorities must stop suppressing the country’s LGBTI community, and repeal laws criminalising homosexuality, says the resolution, adopted by a show of hands . MEPs express their serious concern about the deteriorating political situation in Tanzania, which has worsened since the election of President John Pombe Magufuli in 2015.

They also urge Tanzanian politicians to repeal any laws, policies or barriers to services and information that women, girls and young mothers need for a healthy life. This includes President Magufuli’s declaration that girls who give birth should not be allowed to return to school. The adopted text will be available here (13.12.2018).