Iran: Stop increasingly ruthless crackdown and investigate deaths of protesters

1/4/2018 3:07:25 PM

Many of the hundreds of detainees are believed to be held in overcrowded conditions in the “quarantine section” of Evin prison, which only has capacity for around 180 people.

Many of the hundreds of detainees are believed to be held in overcrowded conditions in the “quarantine section” of Evin prison, which only has capacity for around 180 people.

Amnesty International, 4 January 2018--“The Iranian authorities must ensure the right to peaceful protest, investigate reports that security forces have unlawfully used firearms against unarmed protesters, and protect hundreds of detainees from torture,” Amnesty International said today as crackdown against demonstrations in the country continues.

The human rights organization said: “More than 1,000 people have been arrested and detained in jails notorious for torture and other ill-treatment over the past seven days, with many denied access to their families and lawyers.”

Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research and Advocacy Director, said: “All detainees should be protected from torture and other ill-treatment.”

“Given the alarming scale of the current wave of arrests, it is highly likely that many of those held are peaceful protesters who have been detained arbitrarily and now find themselves in prisons where conditions are dire and torture is a common tool to extract confessions and punish dissidents.”

Philip Luther added: “The Iranian authorities have an appalling track record of carrying out mass arbitrary arrests of peaceful demonstrators.

“The escalation in the intimidation of protesters and the grossly disproportionate restrictions imposed on the right to freedom of expression online over recent days heightens fears that the Iranian authorities may resort to increasingly heavy-handed tactics to crush dissenting voices.

“Peaceful protest is a right, and many people in Iran want to exercise that right. Instead of opting for repression and absurdly accusing protesters of collusion in foreign-orchestrated plots, the Iranian authorities should address their own record of failure to respect a range of civil, political, economic and social rights.”