Executions in Iran 'alarming,' U.N. envoys say

March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM
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GENEVA, Switzerland, March 12 (UPI) -- The use of capital punishment in Iran is 'truly alarming," U.N. special envoys said in response to the hanging of a child bride.

U.N. envoys on human rights said they were appalled by reports an Iranian woman, Farzaneh Moradi, was hanged last week at the Isfahan prison in Iran for murdering her husband. The envoys say she was duped into confessing by the actual attacker, who argued authorities wouldn't take action against someone under the age of 18.

"This is yet another truly alarming case which demonstrates the need for an immediate moratorium on the death penalty in the Islamic Republic of Iran," special envoy on the situation of human rights in Iran Ahmed Shaheed said in a statement Wednesday from Geneva, Switzerland.

Last month, Ravina Shamdasani, a spokeswoman for U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, said at least 80 people have been executed in Iran this year and most of those were for drug-related offenses.

The spokeswoman said at least 500 people were executed last year and 57 of the death sentences were conducted in public.

Christof Heyns, special envoy on summary executions, said Wednesday the rate at which prisoners were executed in Iran was alarming.

"The government continues to execute individuals at a staggering rate, despite serious questions about fair trial standards," he said.

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