with request for inclusion in the agenda for the debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 115 of the Rules of Procedure
by Frédérique Ries, Sarah Ludford, Marios Matsakis, Marielle De Sarnez, Sophia in 't Veld
on behalf of the ALDE Group
on Iran: execution of junvenile offenders
NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.
European Parliament resolution on Iran: execution of junvenile offenders
The European Parliament,
having regard to the Council Declaration of 25 February 2008 on the legislative proposal on criminal law in Iran,
having regard to its previous resolutions on Iran, notably those concerning human rights and, in particular, those of 25 October 2007http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+TA+P6-TA-2008-0185+0+DOC+XML+V0//EN and 31 January 2008http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+TA+P6-TA-2008-0185+0+DOC+XML+V0//EN, 24 April 2008 on women's rights in Iran
having regard to its resolution of 8 May 2008 on the Annual Report on Human Rights in the World 2007 and the European Union's policy on the matter,
having regard to the resolutions of the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN), and, in particular, Resolution 62/168 of 18 December 2007 on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran and Resolution 62/149 of 18 December 2007 on a moratorium on the use of the death penalty,
having regard to the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, to all of which Iran is a party,
having regard to the 2nd inter-parliamentary meeting between the European Parliament and the Majlis (the Islamic consultative assembly) of the Islamic Republic of Iran, held in Tehran on 7 to 9 December 2007, and the report thereon,
having regard to Rule 115(5) of its Rules of Procedure,
whereas the general human rights situation in Iran has continued to deteriorate since 2005, and whereas executions alone almost doubled in 2007, making Iran the country with the highest per capita rate of execution after Saudi Arabia, with Iran and Saudi Arabia, together with Yemen, being the only three countries where executions are carried out for crimes committed by people below the age of 18;
Whereas on 10 June 2008 the Iranian authorities hanged Mohammad Hassanzadeh, a youth sentenced to death when he was only 15 years old, - Hassanzadeh, born in 1992, was under the age of 18 when he was sent to the gallows in Sanandaj; whereas a few other countries still execute children (such as Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Yemen, and Pakistan); whereas Iran has accounted for more than two-thirds of such executions in the past three years;
Whereas the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Louise Arbour expressed her concern on Tuesday over reports that four juvenile offenders in the Islamic Republic of Iran are at imminent risk of execution;
Whereas according to reports received, the four – Mr. Behnoud Shojaaee, Mr. Mohammad Fadaaee, Mr. Saeed Jazee, and Mr. Behnam Zaare – have been sentenced to death for crimes that they committed when they were under 18 years old;
whereas the High Commissioner reminded the Iranian authorities of the absolute prohibition on the application of the death penalty for juvenile offenders under international law;
whereas the Islamic Republic of Iran is a party both to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), both of which prohibit the death penalty for juvenile offenders;
whereas in Iran juvenile offenders include those accused of same-sex relations, behaviour that is punishable by death;
Urges the Islamic Republic of Iran to lift the death sentence against the four juvenile offenders and recalls Iran's international human rights obligations in this regard;
Reiterates its strong condemnation of the death penalty and calls for an immediate moratorium on executions in Iran; is appalled that Iran continues to have the highest number of executions of child offenders in the world and that the moratorium on stoning is still not fully implemented; asks for a revision of the acts and behaviours that are criminalised and punishable by death, such as same-sex relations;
Strongly condemns these sentences and recalls that it is the second time the death penalty would be applied to child offenders in Iran in 2008; on 26 February, Iranian authorities executed Javad Shojaii for a crime he committed when he was 16.
Stresses that these sentences run counter to Iran’s legal obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child and threaten the dignity and the morality of the Iranian people.
Notes the directives recently issued by head of judiciary Sharoudi on banning public executions without prior consent and detentions for long periods without charge;
Calls on the members of the newly elected Majlis speedily to pass the pending reform of the Iranian penal code, with the aim, notably, of abolishing stoning and executions of child offenders, to move towards a moratorium on the death penalty and to bring Iranian legislation into line with international human rights obligations;
Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the High Representative of the Common Foreign and Security Policy, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the UN Secretary-General, the UN Security Council, the UN Human Rights Council, the Head of the Judiciary of Iran and the Government and Parliament of the Islamic Republic of Iran.