Tags: Iran | rights | UN probe

Iran Rejects U.N. Call for Rights Probes

Wednesday, 17 Feb 2010 11:06 AM


GENEVA — Iran has rejected western calls to allow in the UN expert on torture and for wider investigations into post-election violence, a United Nations report showed on Wednesday.

Tehran, which had maintained this week that there was a standing invitation for UN rights experts, agreed to respond by June to a broad recommendation that it accept requests for visits.

However, it rejected specific calls by Australia, Britain, France and the United States to allow visits by the special rapporteurs on torture and on the independence of judges and lawyers.

"The recommendations... did not enjoy the support of Iran," according to the official report on the 47-member UN Human Rights Council's review of Iran, which took place on Monday.

Iran's then reformist President Mohammad Khatami implemented the standing invitation to all UN human rights experts in 2003.

However, the United Nations says they have been unable gain access since 2005, a period that coincides with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's presidency.

Britain's recommendation that Iran invite the UN Secretary-General to investigate violence since last June's presidential election, as well as calls for a domestic inquiry, were also rejected.

The report showed Iran accepted 123 proposals made during the review -- notably to consider abolishing the death penalty for the religious offences of apostasy and heresy, and to stop torture.

It also agreed to respond to 23 others at the Council's next session in June.

However, it rejected 44 more outright -- all by western states -- including those calling for a halt to discrimination against homosexuals and the release of all political prisoners.

An Iranian official last week invited UN human rights chief Navi Pillay to visit.

Copyright © 2010 AFP. All rights reserved.

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2010-06-17
Wednesday, 17 Feb 2010 11:06 AM
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