The United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council is launching an international fact-finding mission into the violent repression of mass protests in Iran. The protests, which started in September, are being dealt with harshly. 25 countries from the UN Council, including the Netherlands, voted in favor of the motion. Six countries, including Armenia, China and Pakistan, voted against. Sixteen countries abstained from the vote.
Two months ago, 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died after being violently arrested by the Iranian police for not wearing her headscarf properly. Since her death, there have been fierce protests in the country, which are still taking place across the country. The Iranian regime is responding increasingly harshly to the protests. Human rights groups say the regime has arrested a total of more than 15,000 demonstrators, a claim the country denies. Iranian courts have already handed down several death sentences against detained demonstrators. According to the human rights organization Iranian Human Rights 416 people, including 51 children, have been killed by violence by Iranian authorities. Most of the deaths occur in Kurdish regions in Iran, where according to the organization even more violent action is taken against demonstrators.
Read also: Kurds play a leading role in the uprising against the Iranian regime: ‘We finally feel supported by the rest of the country’
The fact-finding mission, requested by Germany and Iceland, will investigate all human rights violations in Iran since the protests began on September 16 this year. After the chairman of the council read out the result, there was great cheering among the activists present. This important and long-awaited step shows that the cries for justice from the people of Iran have finally been heard responded Amnesty International. In his speech UN human rights chief Volker Türk called the situation in Iran a “full-fledged human rights crisis”.