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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 Marco Cappato, Frédérique Ries, Marios Matsakis
on behalf of the ALDE Group
on Hangings in Iran

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B6-0389/2008

Procedura : 2008/2624(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on Hangings in Iran

The European Parliament,

  • -having regard to its previous resolutions on placeplaceIran and in particular notably those concerning human rights,
  • -having regard to the EU Presidency statements of 4 June 2008 and 10 June 2008 on the imminent execution of juvenile offenders in placeplaceplaceIran,
  • -having regard to the Declaration of 13 June 2008 by the Presidency on behalf of the European Union on the execution of Mohammad Hassanzadeh,
  • -having regard to the resolutions of the General Assembly of the United Nations, 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 United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, to all of which Iran is a party,
  • -having regard to Rule 115(5) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  alarmé par le nombre impressionnant d'exécutions capitales qui ont eu lieu cet été 2008 en Iran, avec un caractère massif et indiscriminé, qui mène l'Iran encore plus aux marges de la communauté internationale et soulignant que le nombre et la méthode choisie pour ces exécutions ont le bût d'envoyer à la population iranienne un message de terreur et répression,

B.  whereas on 27 July 2008, Iranian authorities hanged 29 adults inside Evin prison in Tehran, the authorities said the executed men had been convicted of drug smuggling and murder but it provided the names of only 10 of them and did not release the evidence against them or details of their prosecution,

C.  whereas on 19 August 2008, Iran hanged Reza Hejazi, aged 20, in the central city of Isfahan for stabbing a man to death in a fight when he was 15, whereas the judiciary maintains that minors are not executed in Iran but 17-year-old Mohammad Hassanzadeh was hanged in the western city of Sanandaj in June 2008,

D.  whereas on 27 August 2008, Iran hanged Behnam Zaree, aged 18, executed in prison in Shiraz for murdering a teenager three years ago, whereas Zare is the sixth juvenile offender Iran has executed this year, whereas no other country is known to have executed a juvenile offender in 2008,

E.  whereas since January 2005, Iran has executed at least 26 juvenile offenders, whereas during the same period only four other countries - Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Yemen, and Pakistan - are known to have executed any juvenile offenders, with a combined total of six such executions in the four countries,

F.  whereas Iran has already executed 191 people in 2008, making it likely to maintain its position as carrying out more executions than any country in the world with the exception of China, although its population is 18 times smaller than China's,

G.  whereas the situation of juvenile offenders facing execution in Iran has reached crisis levels, making Tehran's violation of international standards much greater than any other country, whereas at least 132 juvenile offenders are known to be on death row in Iran, although the true number could be much higher,

1.  demande l'abolition immédiate de la peine de mort dans tous les pays qui la pratiquent encore;

2.  condamne vigoureusement toute les exécutions capitales qui ont été enregistrées récemment en Iran; souligne le caractère inhumain de ces punitions et estime qu'avec ces exécutions l'Iran démontre la nature de son régime;

3.  Recalls that these executions flagrantly contravene the international obligations and commitments of Iran as expressly set out in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which prohibit the execution of minors and of persons convicted of crimes committed when they were minors: urges Iran immediately to bring its legislation and its practices into line with these documents, which it voluntarily adopted and ratified; recalls that, as a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Iran is under an obligation to prohibit executions of persons under 18 at the time of the crime;

4.  Urges the Iranian judiciary to immediately commute the sentences of more than 130 prisoners facing death for crimes committed while children;

5.  Fully supports the "Coalition for the abolition of death penalty in placeIran", made up of Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the International Campaign for Human Rights in placeplaceIran, along with six other international and regional human rights organizations: Iran Human Rights, the Iranian League for the Defense of Human Rights, Penal Reform International, Stop Child Executions and Viviere;

6.  Supports the major international and regional organizations' appeal of 8 July 2008, calling on the Iranian authorities to put an immediate stop to juvenile executions; recalling also that, in December 2007, the UN General Assembly expressed concern about the "execution of persons who were under the age of 18 at the time their offense was committed, contrary to the obligations of the Islamic Republic of Iran under Article 37 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and Article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights";

7.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Commission, the Council and to the Iranian President, Government and Parliament.