The British Committee for Iran Freedom (BCFIF) strongly condemns the hanging of a detained Iranian protester, Mostafa Salehi, in the early hours of Wednesday morning, 5 August.

Mr Salehi, 30, was according to reports arrested in the small town of Kahrizsang in the Isfahan province, during the nationwide protests in Iran between December 2017 and January 2018. Reports also show that he was charged with “leading the riots” in the city and sentenced to death following an unfair trial.

This latest execution of detained protesters is an alarming escalation by the Iranian authorities targeting those who have exercised their right to freedom of speech and assembly to participate in anti-regime and anti-government protests going on in Iran in the last three years with demands for genuine change.

The UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, and UN’s Special Rapporteur on Iran, Javaid Rehman, should strongly condemn this new disturbing trend of death sentences and executions against arrested protesters in Iran and again demand the release of all political prisoners and arrested protesters. But they must also take urgent steps to make sure that the UN immediately sends an independent, international fact-finding mission to Iran to visit the prisons and to meet with political prisoners and thousands arrested protesters. The failure of the International Community and the UN to hold the regime in Iran to account for its systematic human rights violations is neither acceptable nor sustainable policy.

The British Committee for Iran Freedom (BCFIF) calls on the UK Government to condemn the execution of Mr Salehi and the regime’s use of death sentences to intimidate the Iranian people and to crush anti-regime protests.

Furthermore, Foreign Secretary, the Rt Hon Dominic Raab, should use FCO’s new global sanction regime to impose sanctions on those Iran regime officials involved in these serious human rights violations.

The British Committee for Iran Freedom (BCFIF) believes that the United Kingdom should lead the efforts at international level to secure the dispatching of a UN-led fact-finding mission to Iran, which has been called for repeatedly by the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Mrs Maryam Rajavi, as a way to stop executions in Iran.

Professor Lord Alton of Liverpool

British Committee for Iran Freedom

6 August 2020