5 February 1993
COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
Agenda item 12
QUESTION OF THE VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND FUNDAMENTAL FREEDOMS IN ANY PART OF THE WORLD, WITH PARTICULAR REFERENCE TO COLONIAL AND OTHER DEPENDENT COUNTRIES AND TERRITORIES
Final report on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran submitted by the Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights, Mr. Reynaldo Galindo Pohl, pursuant to Commission resolution 1992/67 of 4 March 1992
- Subsequent to the finalization of this report to the Commission on Human Rights at its forty-ninth session, the Special Representative on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran has received a compilation of replies to questions raised with the Iranian Government in his letter of 23 December 1992 as well as in earlier communications reflected in his interim report to the General Assembly at its forty-seventh session.
- The letter dated 27 January 1993 from the Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations Office at Geneva addressed to the Special Representative containing the compilation of replies appears in the annex to the present document.
With reference to your letter of 23 December 1992 in which a number of allegations were brought to the attention of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, I have the honour to transmit a compilation of replies to your questions raised in both the above-cited communication as well as your interim report to the Forty-Seventh Session of the General Assembly.
I would also like to inform you that the list of more than 1,500 (one thousand five hundred) prisoners who were granted amnesty in the first half of 1992 and 1,700 (one thousand seven hundred) prisoners in January 1993 is ready for submission and will be transmitted as soon as we receive it from the capital. Therefore, on this account, more than 3,200 (three thousand two hundred) prisoners had been amnestied during last year.
It would be appreciated if these replies would be made to reflect in your introductory statement before the forty-ninth session of the Commission on Human Rights and be incorporated in your final report.
(Signed): Sirous Nasseri
- REPLIES CONCERNING QUESTIONS PENDING IN THE SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE’S INTERIM REPORT TO THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY AT ITS FORTY-SEVENTH SESSION (A/47/617)*
- (Para. 29) On 28 June there were no executions in Shiraz.
- In July, six persons were sentenced to death in the Province of Khorasan, two of whom were Afghan nationals. Those six persons illegally imported armaments and a hundred tons of drugs through the eastern borders of the country, stole livestock from villages and carried them out of the country; as well as three cases of rebellious acts such as disputing with the armed forces and killing two border guards and wounding two others. There are several Afghan citizens who have migrated to eastern Iran due to the war and insecurity in Afghanistan. The Afghan citizens got married to Iranians and abandoned their nationality and obtained Iranian nationality; thus the existing ancient cultural relations between Iran and Afghanistan and between the citizens of these two countries. With regard to the arrest and punishment of culprits, there is no discrimination between Iranian nationals and foreigners - punishments are issued according to wrong acts committed. (Para. 30)
- In July, four persons were sentenced to death for drug trafficking. It should be mentioned that huge turnovers in drug trafficking, Iran being peripherally situated, favours the transport and transfer of these drugs for consumption to Europe and other countries. The difficulties in controlling the tracks of drug traffickers in Iran are due to its mountainous setting as well as large areas of desert; the neighbouring countries’ inability to cooperate in cutting down drug trafficking; the instability of the central Government on the Afghan border; drug traffickers being very well equipped with advanced technology armaments (up till now drug traffickers have caused the crash of several helicopters guarding borders, as well as using advanced missiles to prevent effective control of the borders); and a considerable tendency among our citizens for transiting drugs. For the reasons mentioned above, if the campaign against drug trafficking is not intensified to limit the consumption of drugs, a large quantity of drugs will be transferred to European countries. (Para. 33)
- Mr. Yahya Kafshdar’s consumption of non-standardized alcoholic drinks poisoned him and he died while being transported to the hospital. The medical documents confirmed the reason for his death. He has not had any trial or conviction record, either temporary or permanent in Ardabil. (Para. 34)
- Prisoners, after completing their term in prison, without presenting any guarantee or bail, are liberated and they enjoy a normal life. At this stage there is no prisoner who after having served his term of imprisonment and regrets his acts has his claim for regret denied. (Para. 65)
* Paragraph to which reply refers is indicated in parenthesis.
- There exists an antipathetic atmosphere in Iran to prisoners, who usually after they have been released encounter several problems including: rejection by society, no access to suitable jobs and debts resulting from their term of imprisonment. Therefore some of them return to their illegal activities. The judicial system, to assist prisoners who complete their term of imprisonment, and in order to prevent them from recividism, has established social assistance offices for them. Furthermore during recent years the judicial system has invested considerably in the field of prevention of crimes in society. (Para. 67)
- The claim is baseless. Prisoners at the termination of their sentences and during the war as well were freed. Disciplinary regulations plan and implement a schedule of normal life individually and in association with others. To this end, the organization of prisons have devoted suitable sports facilities (football fields, covered floors for volleyball, basketball, swimming pools, a gymnasium for exercising, etc.) and cultural establishments (halls for theatres and movies, library) etc. In addition to the above-named facilities, in all prisons, prisoners have access to the mass media, through radio, television, newspapers, magazines, etc. and can take advantage appropriately of those facilities. These establishments have been visited by special representatives during their travel to the Islamic Republic of Iran. (Para. 64)
- The answer was given in reply to paragraph 25. Furthermore, records could be obtained from Messrs. Hamid Nadri, Mohammad Salami, Bechar Shabibi and Mosen Sarmadi. The Organization of Peoples Mojahedin of Iran has explained in a declaration that Mosen Sarmadi and Mohammad Salemi (Salami) in an operation called MORVID (operation of the massacre of the Kurds during the popular uprising) have been killed in the north of Iraq. Therefore the referred claim cannot be genuine. (Para. 24)
- The statement made in this paragraph is correct. (Para. 26)
- No record of detention of Mr. Ali Zamatkershan was obtained. A person called Ali Reza Zamat Kersh was detained by the police for giving shelter for contraband goods of combustibles (gas and gasoline) but due to his regret and ignorance of his crimes by the verdict of the court he got released.
- See paragraph 27. (Para. 74)
- In the rebellion of Mashhad, rebels prevented the recognition of their identity by covering their faces with black scarves. This action caused panic among women and children. For this reason some Iranian authorities’ statements have been made on this subject. (Para. 76)
- There is no temporary or permanent detention record for Messrs. Hassan Hendi, Reza Khalagi and Ahmad Ghiyasi. In addition, operations of house-to-house investigations have not been undertaken in Shush and this claim is false. (Para. 79)
- For police to suspect, accuse or arrest someone they should obtain authorization from the Attorney General and present their legal documents to the accused or to his/her parents. (Para. 80)
- The subject referred to in these paragraphs is refuted. Since the period of revolution till the present time no cultural facilities have been confiscated or banned by the judiciary. (Paras. 92 and 93)
- It should be mentioned that the Ayatollah Fazel Lankarani has no official or temporary occupation in the Islamic Republic of Iran. His explanation is in contrast to the cultural policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran. With regard to freedom of expression, he, as the professor in Hozeh Elmieh of Gom, has his own activities and can express his ideas as he wishes. The Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance in a declaration expressed his agreements with those views expressed by various groups. (Para. 95)
- Although the Tehran Times newspaper claims that newspapers in Iran are afflicted with self-censorship, the problems regarding the press corp in Iran derive from entirely different issues than those described by the Special Representative in the form of a claim. The press situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran has passed through its developing stages, and at present, there hardly exists any other country in the region, or basically in the developing world at large, such extended freedom within the political, social, economic and artistic contexts of the law. Officials are criticized daily in the press, and their offences are publicized to the people. Although some political groups claim that the Government should exercise more supervision over the press, and some government officials have been accused of being deficient for ignoring these requests or in their respect for freedom of the press, the Government continually insists on maintaining freedom of the press. (Para. 91)
- This claim is denied. In spite of the Special Representative’s three trips to Tehran and his direct observation of the situation in the country in this regard, by presenting such claims, instead of highlighting the enthusiasm for assistance and cooperation for the promotion of human rights, creates a negative image related to propagandistic systems of the enemy. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, possession of the machines mentioned does not require any special permission, and in fact, there are hundreds, thousands or perhaps millions of typewriters, photocopiers, computers, fax or shortwave transmitters in the possession of the people. (Paras. 92 and 93)
- Paragraph 94 is denied.
- The publishing licence of the monthly Farad magazine was suspended due to its insults to Islamic values and society. This suspension was decided by the Licence Issuance Committee for Publication, comprised of representatives of the judicial branch, the press corps, the Islamic Consultative Assembly and the executive branch of the Government, with respect to the press laws and the Law of Cultural Heritage adopted by the parliament. Mr. Nasser Arabha was tried in court in the presence of the jury, and was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment. At present, he has served most of his imprisonment. (Para. 96)
- The members of the Board of Directors of Donya-é-Sokhan magazine were not arrested. (Para. 97)
- The weekly Zan-é-Rous magazine was not banned and it continues to be published. (Para. 98)
- The paragraph in question is entirely invalid. During the election, reporters from various countries of the world were invited to Iran, and they participated in election meetings and press conferences in Tehran and other cities. Their reports were published in newspapers and broadcast on radio and television stations throughout the world. Further explanation is that according to the election law adopted by the Islamic Consultative Assembly, mobile campaigning (in the form of convoys and parades) which causes disturbances to public order and traffic is prohibited by law, but the convening of stationary gatherings and meetings during the campaign, in accordance with the law, is without encumbrance. It is noteworthy that as regards the propagatory posters and advertisements which were used by candidates in Tehran and other cities, a large percentage of wall surface was covered by these campaign advertisements, which almost six months later still cover some city walls. (Para. 99)
- According to the laws of the Islamic Republic of Iran, only persons having the necessary qualifications and with no previous misconduct records may be candidates for election. (Para. 100)
- As mentioned previously, the cases of individuals committing offences and having judicial files in this regard are under investigation by the Committee of Examination of Competency. (Para. 101)
- As mentioned before, the Committee of Examination of Competency was established in accordance with the laws adopted by the Islamic Republic of Iran and is performing its legal obligations. (Para. 102)
- During the election, candidates for the Islamic Consultative Assembly campaigned freely, and the large number and diversity of candidates and ballots attests to this fact. As an example, in a small city in which only 150,000 people had the right to vote, 20 people became candidates, among which the minimum number of votes received was 2,000 and the maximum was 60,000. The competency of the candidates was examined by a delegation comprised of local trustees, representative of the judicial and executive branches of the Government and the "Council of Guardians" which investigated the complaints of the candidates. Some of the candidates, by mobilizing like-minded newspapers, attempted to create an atmosphere in which to exert pressure on the Council of Guardians. Nevertheless, no dispute or clash occurred among the advocates of the various candidates, and this important event took place peacefully throughout the country. (Para. 103)
- There are no limitations on women to attain professional positions or to continue their studies, and only infrequently are recommendations made to female students concerning a limited number of fields of study. For instance, women choosing mining due to the difficult work conditions might be advised to study in fields in which they have better job opportunities. The Islamic Republic of Iran, through the gender division of schools, has been able to provide a better atmosphere for education and to minimize sexual corruption. Female teachers may teach in boys’ schools and male teachers in girls’ schools; and in small and remote villages schools may be mixed co-educationally due to the meagerness of the student body. No school has been closed down because of a lack of teachers or students. Women are free to travel abroad and there is no restriction on such travel. Considering the fact that the majority of the Iranian people are Muslim, the holy Islamic codes form the basic guidelines for the laws. While women have full freedom of choice to marry and create a family, they freely accept regulations regarding marriage and the limitation of the rights and duties of both men and women, based on such Islamic criteria. Men and women who do not wish to accept the framework of such laws can resort to temporary marriage in which case they have no travel limitations or other conventional responsibilities of a permanent marriage. The presentation of such claims by the Special Representative serves no purpose other than to create a social gap within the Islamic society and focus away from more creditable issues. (Paras. 104 and 105)
- The freedom to choose a second spouse is among the basic rights of citizens of the Islamic Republic of Iran in order to protect families with no guardians; such a practice is only possible under the supervision of the judicial administration or with the valid permission of the previous family. (Para. 106)
- The allegations mentioned are invalid and beyond the limits of investigation by the Special Representative. (Para. 107)
- The legal philosophy of the observation of "Hijab" for women and men in an Islamic society is fully credible and within the context of conventional international laws. Therefore, since more than 95 per cent of people in Iran are Muslim and thereby follow the laws prevailing upon an Islamic society, all follow and support the appropriate laws and regulations on the rights of society. Women and men in a social environment are obliged to observe the covering attire, as covering up to some extent within Western countries has also been recognized as a part of conventional social criteria. As an example in the West, the presence of nude men and women in public places is limited by the regulations of the particular jurisdiction, which has the authority to determine the code acceptable for each place. As such, how does the Special Representative place such authorization of the Islamic Republic, which is within the context of credible international covenants, in question. (Para. 108)
- While denying the cases mentioned in these paragraphs, the law specifies that in the case where individuals, whether male or female, resort to a certain conduct or behaviour which is contrary to the explicit text of the current laws of the Islamic Republic of Iran or Islamic values, the disciplinary forces will consider such conduct as committing obvious crimes, and are obliged to put the law into effect. Although some political groups believe that women should observe "Hijab" entirely and have criticized the Government for not responding to this matter, until now there have been no confrontations with females who do not observe the "Hijab" properly. It seems that the logic of the Special Representative is more geared to encouraging anarchism rather than supporting conventional international civil and political rights. (Paras. 109-114)
- According to the investigations, no claim has been made by Amir Assgari, Morshed Ali, or Gholam Reza Koushki to the Ministry of Labour or the Organization of Social Security which are the competent authorities to investigate such matters. Further investigation in this regard is taking place. (Paras. 115-117)
- Tehran University claims that there are no records regarding Mr. Mohammad Ziai Pour studying there and requests the Special Representative to provide further information on this matter. (Para. 118)
- Mr. Ismail Movasseghian and Mr. Mehdi Hadji Moniri have not submitted any claims to judicial authorities. It is necessary to present further information about these persons to the Islamic Republic of Iran in order to follow up the case. The government of the city of Ardebil and the Administration of Physical Training express their lack of knowledge about the existence of such a gymnasium. Further investigation in this regard is under way. (Paras. 119 and 120)
- The subject is under investigation by judicial authorities. (Para. 122)
- The validity of this claim is denied. Reply to the Human Rights Committee will be forthcoming. (Paras. 123-126)
- Evidence resulting from official inquiries clearly indicates that Mr. Mahboodi’s accident, as reaffirmed by his family, was merely due to his old age, mental and physical disease. No official complaint has yet been received. (Para. 127)
- The related file of Messrs. Bahman Mithaghi and Kayvan Khalajabadi are under investigation by the competent court. The previous death penalties, after being kept pending, were recently rejected by the Supreme Court. (Para. 128)
- The file is under investigation. The murderers will be treated in a legal and indiscriminate manner.
- Baha’ism has not been recognized as a religion and no right in this regard is available to them. (Paras. 131 and 132)
- The claim is not valid in several cases. Cases in which illegal restrictions have been imposed on this group of Iranian citizens by local authorities will be followed up and responded to accordingly by the appropriate authorities. (Para. 133)
- These kinds of cases are being prosecuted by judicial authorities and in this particular case the subject is under investigation to be clarified. (Paras. 134-138)
- (a) The arrest of Mr. Hossein Esfahan (ESHRAGAI) was, solely due to the violation of the law banning Baha’i sect propaganda in the Islamic Republic of Iran. He is convicted for unlawful activities and his detention is entirely unrelated to the Baha’i faith.
- The allegations concerning four Baha’i women are refuted.
- It has to be acknowledged, with regard to the arrest of 10 Baha’i by 1992, that all citizens were to be treated equally before the law. Every Iranian citizen might face legal prosecution and be kept in custody based on various charges such as civil and penal offences from which the Baha’i followers are not considered to be exempted. However, no citizen can be detained merely due to his belief. (Para. 139)
- The allegations expressed in this paragraph are totally refuted. It has to be mentioned that the Baha’i institutional and organized activities have been legally banned in the Islamic Republic of Iran since 1983, but the Baha’is were obviously entitled to apply their own personal code. (Para. 132)
- The Baha’is in accordance with the law are forbidden to be recruited for Government positions - few cases of Baha’i pensions are under investigation. (Para. 133)
- The legal ban of properties applies to all Iranians who abandoned citizenship and were not present in the country to investigate their own properties. (Paras. 141-143)
- The allegations about Baha’i cemeteries are totally refuted. The violence by the people and the demolition of the Baha’i shrines have been occurring for more than a century. (Paras. 144 and 145)
- The allegations are totally refuted. All Baha’is are entitled to obtain Iranian passports and have the right to exit the country. (Para. 146)
- The Iranian press freely exercises the right to publish different views and perceptions including the cited instances in the paragraph concerned. (Para. 147)
- Replies to the allegations made in the memorandum attached to the letter dated 23 December 1992 and contained in the report of the Special Representative to the Commission on Human Rights at its forty-ninth session (E/CN.4/1993/41)
- In response to the specific cases of the application of the death penalty, it may be stated that as a criminal offender, Mr. Abbas Narou’i killed more than 70 innocent people and the members of the disciplinary forces in the eastern parts of the country. During the last 10 years, he was the head of a group that distributed illicit drugs in over 10 cities in the country. The group was responsible for the transportation of more than 10 tons of illicit drugs from western borders into Iran and its widespread distribution across the country. While transporting 200 kilogrammes of heroin, he was arrested and handed over to the judicial authorities after an armed conflict that left several members of the disciplinary forces wounded or martyred. The defendant’s case was investigated in court and in the presence of his attorney the defendant’s crime was proved. The court rendered the final judgement which was carried out following the endorsement of the Supreme Court. (Para. 68)
- According to the investigations made, such a person was not hanged in Qom on that day. (Para. 69)
- Mr. Elias Tofighi was a member of a terrorist group in Iraq who killed 53 innocent people during 15 military operations across the Iran-Iraq border and in the Kurdistan Province of Iran. He confessed to all his crimes. His case was investigated when several parents or close relatives of the victims filed a complaint. The court investigated the accusations and complaints in the presence of attorneys from both sides and judicial advisers, and issued the "Ghesas". The final judgement was carried out after being endorsed by relevant authorities. Allegations concerning Rahman Eliasi are denied. There is no record on him. (Para. 70)
- The execution of Mr. Faramarz Souri is a fabrication. (Para. 71)
- In 1992, no one was sentenced to capital punishment for political reasons. There are no records on Mr. Saleh Amin Pour and Mr. Hassan Saidi. (Para. 72)
- For lack of sufficient information, the shooting of Colonel Sadeq Rabani by the disciplinary forces was not accepted. It is worth mentioning that on that day no one was killed in Isfahan. (Para. 73).
- Babak Abbasian and a family friend, Alireza, attacked Rashide Aghai and stabbed him to death in a family dispute. Following the investigations made by the disciplinary forces and Criminal Court 142, the murderer and his accomplice were arrested after a year, and the case was brought to court in the presence of the complainant, the defendant and his attorney. The "Ghesas" was rendered as the final judgement because of the complainant’s insistence, was carried out after being endorsed by the Supreme Court. An accomplice to murder, Alireza was sentence to one year of imprisonment. Rashide Aghai Doust was not a member of the Bassij and the murder was not political. (Para. 74)
- All 19 persons were members of an international group of drug traffickers active in the distribution of illicit drugs for several years. Capital punishment was carried out pursuant to the court’s judgement after hearing the defendants and their attorneys and upon being endorsed by the Supreme Court. (Para. 75)
- No one was executed in Bakhtaran or Tehran on 27 or 29 September 1992. (Para. 76)
- The disciplinary forces arrested these persons on charges of murdering the janitor of the building at 82 Valiasr Street and stealing his property. Following the testimony of local people, this case was investigated in Criminal Court 124 which demanded "Ghesas" after hearing the complainants and the defendants and their attorneys. The "Ghesas" was carried out after being endorsed by relevant authorities and the Supreme Court. (Para. 78)
- There were no executions on 18, 19, 20 or 21 October in the provinces of Tehran or Hamadan. All of the mentioned allegations are invalid. Mr. Ali Naroui was arrested in Shiraz for membership in a drug transportation group and for distribution of at least 250 kilograms of heroin and hashish. After hearing the defendant and his attorney, the court rendered the final judgement of the death penalty which was carried out after being endorsed by the Supreme Court. (Paras. 79-83)
- No one was stoned on 1 November 1992. There is no information about the woman. Javad Rahmzadeh killed Hamid Khoshdel, who on the day of the attack was taking a walk with his wife. The disciplinary forces of Mashad arrested the murderer and handed him over to Mashad’s Penal Court 18. The court sentenced him to death in accordance with the provisions of "Ghesas" and "Had" after investigating the case and hearing the defendant and the attorneys from both sides. The sentence was carried out after being endorsed by the Supreme Court. (Para. 84)
- Ardeshir Kianpoor was arrested by the disciplinary forces for the murder of Ali Akbar Alyan, a carpet seller, for financial reasons. The Court demanded the "Ghesas" which was carried out once it was endorsed by the Supreme Court. (Para. 85)
- It took place on 4 October 1990. According to the victims’ case, Bahram Ketabi Razlighi realized that some of the fruit contained in his shop was missing. He hid himself and waited. Next morning a minibus driver from the defence industry stops in front of the shop and starts stealing fruits with the help of Abbas, a friend. The victim follows them and is run over by the minibus driver. The murderer after his arrest said that he did not see the man when he was knocked. The case was submitted to the court which ruled that the murderer claim was false and demanded the "Ghesas". (Para. 86)
- This is invalid and has been responded to in detail above. (Para. 87)
- These allegations are completely false. (Para. 88)
- (a) Ebrahim Haghshenas is convicted for the murder of Mehdi Rostam Azizi, drinking alcoholic beverages and gambling. On 21 March this year, after playing football, Ebrahim and Hassan met a friend, Rostam, and they decided to play gambling in Ebrahim’s place. After some losses and gains Ebrahim and Rostam started fighting. Rostam took his shirt off and told Ebrahim who was holding a knife to attack him and prove that he was a man. He said that he had lost control after drinking alcohol, but the court found that unacceptable. Following the confession, it became clear Ebrahim had drunk alcohol, although he was fully aware when the murder took place. The judge in Criminal Court 134 of Tehran, in reading the verdict had said that the conflict was fully under control by the murderer when the murder took place. Ebrahim was therefore sentenced to death and the other two were sentenced to punitive imprisonment. The defendants objected to the court’s judgement, it was submitted to the Supreme Court. Branch 16 of the Supreme Court reaffirmed the judgement which was sent to the relevant branch to be carried out.
- The dossier of Ahmad Radjabi Analoheh due to killing of his wife has been examined in Penal Court Branch 142 in Tehran. In the light of the proof of the crime, the Court had issued the decree of "Ghesas". (Para. 89)
- No information has been found with respect to Bahman Ghahremani by the courts or by the police force in the city of Yasouj. The claim is denied. (Para. 101)
- Legal measures against any form of arbitrary behaviour is considered by the country’s judicial authorities. Legal steps will be taken against all those who have an abusive behaviour towards security and order of the society. Such cases are currently under prosecution by the disciplinary forces. Observance of the rules of Islamic Hejab (covering) is a social regulation, however, carrying out heavy penalties such as those indicated in paragraph 123 are invalid. Respecting the veil regulation is a part of social law and order. But severe convictions cited under paragraph 123 is denied. The claims under paragraphs 121, 122 and 124 as denied. Harassment and drinking alcoholic beverages in public are an offence. However, the punishments indicated in the paragraphs mentioned are all denied. (Paras. 121-124)
- Commitment to responsibilities provided for in civil and political codes requires mental maturity. For instance, physical maturity is not a condition for participation in general elections. (Para. 172)
- Detention of those persons is denied. stops and warns those who violate the law. newspapers with exaggeration. (Para. 173) Because it is the police that These matters are reflected in the
- Abdollah Bagheri is a leading figure of Komeleh. He has been arrested due to armed attack and armed entrance to the country from the Iraq borders. He has so far confessed four murders, and his dossier is under investigation of the court. (Para. 174 (a)) The case under paragraph 174 (b) is denied. Mr. Hans Bohler who had been arrested because of illegal relations with military personnel of the Islamic Republic of Iran was released recently by giving security for the fulfilment of his obligation. (Para. 174 (c))
- A Kayhan correspondent in Tabriz was detained after publishing some news and was beaten. Recently, there was news that the Minister of the Interior had emphasized that inefficient governors or mayors who create dissatisfaction among people will be discharged. Accordingly, the Governor of central Tabriz, Behrouz Fakhmi, was discharged from duty for violating the law by slapping a hard working colonel of the disciplinary forces while on duty. The news was published in Kayhan’s provincial paper after it was reported in the local newspapers in Tabriz. With the publication of the report, the Governor of Tabriz, Mr. Najafi Azar, assumed that since the Governor of central Tabriz was appointed and brought to Tabriz by him, the issue being publicized undermined his dignity. He sent two letters of refutation after dishonouring the person who had a hand in it. Both letters were published but were not sufficient to withhold the Governor’s anger. As a legal authority, he complained about the supervisory officer of Kayhan in East Azerbaijan in the Justice Administration Office. An officer and a representative of the Governor went to the newspaper’s office in Tabriz to arrest the supervisor. The supervisor and the reporter were taken to the Justice Administration Office in the governorship’s car. Despite explaining paragraph 4 of article 9 of the Press Law passed by the Islamic Consultative Assembly that explicitly states that newspapers are responsible for answering every question, the judicial police, regardless of explanation said that his duty was to arrest the newspapers provincial supervisor. Consequently, Kayhan’s reporter was arrested and, to the astonishment of others, beaten. After the investigations made by the newspaper and the awareness of judicial authorities of the illegal measure, the reporter was freed on bail to introduce himself to the legal authorities the next day. The complaint of the newspaper’s supervisor is being investigated, and an effort is made to avoid the violation of freedom of expression by the press. (Para. 188)
- Mr. Qorban Ali Salehabadi’s crime is that of violating the law, contacting illegal groups and taking part in activities against national security. He was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment. (Para. 195)
- The Islamic Republic of Iran should render educational service meeting international standards. The Ministry of Education aims at providing the necessary educational atmosphere. This year the budget for compulsory education and higher education constitutes 40 per cent of the total budget. This takes place at a time when the military budget comprises 12 per cent of the total budget. This is indicative of the importance of education in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Investment in the field of education will yield positive results in the promotion and support of human rights. (Paras. 212 and 213)
- According to the law on labour of the Islamic Republic of Iran under-age children are forbidden from hard work and night shift work. Such a report will prompt authorities to investigate the case and force employers to observe the law on labour. It should be noted that when the report was published in Salam newspaper, the authorities in the labour Ministry started investigating the matter. (Para. 265)
- The issue was investigated and rare cases were found. The Secretary-General of the Relief Committee stated the issue to seek help and alert people to the poverty in the regions. Such illegal actions are not prevalent and efforts are made to stop such cases resulting from economic poverty through cooperation and work with other institutions and humanitarian organizations. (Para. 266)
- They were not arrested. The disciplinary forces stopped several people and required identification, after which they were released. (Para. 267)
- Ayatollah Janati’s statement was more a criticism and by no means implies the violation of the right to leave or to return to the country. (Para. 262)
- There is no information about Mr. Said Shafizadeh or about such an event having taken place at Mehrabad airport. (Para. 263)
- Mr. Mohammad Sipehr was once summoned by the Justice Department and sentenced to a maximum of 20 days of imprisonment for violating the law. He was not condemned for his faith. (Para. 244)
- Allegations of his torture are denied. The refusal of his exit was because of the security he should give. He is not the leader of the Ingili Church and, at present, he engages freely in his activities. (Para. 245)
- The Government did not dissolve the sacred Bible Association. The owner of the bookstore closed the shop himself and left the country. There are no impediments to his return. In this regard, contacts were made with his relative. His son said that he has sent letters to his father requesting him to return. He is also ready to talk to the Special Representative. The Bible Bookstore which is beside the Bible Society is still open. This claim is completely distorted. The office of the Bible Society stopped working when its president left the country. The bookstore remained closed practically for the same reason. (Para. 246)
- This is totally fabricated. This garden is known as the Garden of Besharat. Summer camps of Ashori-Christians and Armenian-Christians are held here. These activities were held this summer as well. (Para. 247)
- Mehdi Dibaj is not a priest. He has insulted the Holy Prophet of Islam. Allegation about his torture and harassments are invalid. (Para. 248)
- This claim is not a valid one. None of the leaders of the Rabani Society have been arrested. This Society has weekly ceremonies of its own and it has a school in the city of Rasht. Hamshahri, one of the popular morning newspapers, has issued a special edition on the occasion of Christmas about Christians and there are advertisements of a few books of the Rabani Society. There has been an illegal gathering of a few Ashoris. Two of them were arrested and released afterwards. (Para. 249)
- These books belonged to the Church of the Rabani Society and were collected because their contents were found contrary to the law. Presently, thousands of copies of the New Testament are being printed in Iran. (Para. 250)
- The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance supports not only the publications of minorities, but also the entire publication network of the country. In this regard, there are certain regulations for printing materials based on the constitutional principals related to religious minorities . There has not been any application for the New Church construction. (Para. 251)
- Claims in this paragraph are not substantiated. All recognized minorities including Christians, Jews and Zorostrians have weekly ceremonies. Over 30,000 Christians were gathered to welcome the recent arrival of the great Christian leader of Jasligh in Iran. They also held a communal prayer ceremony. During Christmas, this year, there was a television broadcast in the Armenian language. (Para. 252)
- These paragraphs are invalid. Judicial and disciplinary authorities of the Islamic Republic of Iran investigated the issues raised in the paragraphs concerned. The authorities denied the allegations. (Paras. 253-256)
- The validity of IRNA’s report is endorsed. (Para. 257)