February 27, 2018
The United States is appalled to learn that the government of Iran is sending its Justice Minister, Seyyed Alireza Avaei, to address the UN Human Rights Council. Minister Avaei oversaw the summary executions of Iranians in the late 1980’s. As the recent head of the Tehran judiciary and current Minister of Justice, Avaei oversees systematic arbitrary arrests and detentions of Iranians engaging in peaceful political and civic activism, and imprisons them in a network of facilities notorious for suspicious deaths, the use of torture, and denial of medical care.
Iran’s dire human rights environment rightfully receives continued Human Rights Council criticism and deserves more. As UN member states we must use our collective voice to condemn human rights violators who seek to use the Council as a platform to obfuscate their roles or distort the fundamental values this body was created to defend.