Jun 14, 2023

UNPO Presents a Joint Submission Addressing Human Rights Situation in Iran to the UN

The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) has collaborated with the Association of Human Rights in Kurdistan - Geneva (KMMK-G), the Ahwaz Human Rights Organization (AHRO), and the Balochistan Human Rights Group (BHRG) to present a joint submission ahead of the UN Secretary General's report on the human rights situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This submission comes on the occasion of the 78th session of the General Assembly and sheds light on the pressing human rights challenges faced by marginalized communities, particularly the Ahwazi Arabs, Kurds, and Baluch minorities.

The comprehensive joint submission delves into critical topics and provides recorded cases and evidence that highlight the human rights violations experienced by these communities in Iran. The submission addresses various forms of discrimination faced by minority communities in Iran. These include the overall issue of the death penalty, the lack of freedom of assembly and association, the right to a fair trial, and the challenging situation of women in minority regions.

The submission in particularly emphasizes the issue of the disproportionate use of executions against Kurdish, Baluch, and Ahwazi Arab citizens following the 'Woman, Life, Freedom' protests. Compiling this submission was particularly challenging due to the disturbing and alarming reports of largescale executions and arrests in minority regions, particularly Kurdistan and Baluchistan, in the aftermath of these the protests.

For instance, KMMK-G has identified the names of three hundred nineteen (319) prisoners, including 8 women who were executed in Iran from January 1, 2023 to May 23rd, 2023.  More than 50% of these executions were carried out against Kurdish and Baluch citizens, despite Kurds and Baluchis comprising only 20% of Iran's 85 million population.

By presenting this joint submission, we call upon the international community and the UN Secretary-General to urgently address the human rights violations suffered by minorities in Iran. We strongly emphasize the need for accountability, justice, and the protection of the rights and dignity of minorities in Iran.

Our recommendations to the General Secretary are as follows:

  1. Urgently call upon the Iranian government to halt all forms of discrimination, oppression, and human rights violations against the Ahwazi Arabs, Kurds, and Baluch minorities.
  2. Demand the immediate release of individuals unfairly detained, and ensure that their cases are reviewed in accordance with international standards of due process and fair trial.
  3. Establish monitoring mechanisms to regularly assess and report on the human rights situation of marginalized communities in Iran, paying particular attention to the Ahwazi Arabs, Kurds, and Baluch minorities.
  4. Advocate for the implementation of comprehensive legal reforms that guarantee the rights of minorities, including the right to freedom of expression, assembly, and association, as well as cultural and linguistic rights.
  5. Encourage the Iranian government to engage in meaningful dialogue with representatives of these marginalized communities to address their concerns, grievances, and aspirations, and promote inclusive and participatory decision-making processes.
  6. Provide technical assistance and capacity-building support to civil society organizations working on human rights and minority issues concerning Iran, to strengthen their efforts in documenting violations, providing support to victims, and advocating for change.

We eagerly await the publication of the General Secretary’s report based on the submissions of UNPO and numerous other human rights groups in and outside of Iran. We look forward to the consideration of our recommendations by the United Nations, recognizing the importance of addressing the serious issue of discrimination against minorities in Iran and globally. The UNPO remains committed in our efforts to raise awareness of the discrimination facing minorities in Iran and worldwide and advocate for the rights of marginalized communities and at the international level.