Remarks at a Meeting of the Third Committee on Agenda Item 72: Promotion and Protection of Human Rights

Ambassador Michele J. Sison
U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
October 25, 2017


The United States is concerned that the Government of Iran continues to deny the Special Rapporteur access to the country, and we call on Iran to immediately allow a country visit. We condemn ongoing reprisals by the Iranian government against persons who interact with the Special Rapporteur.

We strongly condemn the Iranian government for imprisoning peaceful activists, such as Nargess Mohammadi, often under deplorable prison conditions, and for unjustly detaining foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens and dual nationals. We note the Special Rapporteur has received numerous reports about the use of torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment of prisoners. These include allegations of amputations, stoning, and flogging as forms of punishment, and physical and mental torture to coerce confessions. We share the Rapporteur’s concern over the inhumane treatment of prisoners of conscience, including a pattern of denial of medical treatment which puts many at risk of dying.

Iran’s per capita execution rate remains among the highest in the world, a serious cause for concern considering the many executions carried out for crimes that do not meet international requirements. Iran continues to impose the death penalty on persons who committed alleged crimes as juveniles.

The U.S. shares the Rapporteur’s concerns regarding the continued repression of religious minorities in Iran. Baha’i individuals face severe treatment by the government because of their beliefs, including harsh jail sentences, confiscation of property.