Iran protests: UN rights chief says ‘full-fledged’ crisis underway in Iran

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Iran is in a “full-fledged human rights crisis” as the authorities crack down anti-regime dissidents, according to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Turk.

Turk called for “independent, impartial and transparent investigative processes” into human rights violations in Iran during a special session of the UN Human Rights Council on Thursday.

The Islamic Republic has been gripped by a wave of anti-government protests sparked by the death of Mahsa Aminia 22-year-old Kurdish Iranian woman detained by the morality police in September allegedly for not wearing her hijab properly.

Authorities have since released one deadly oppression on protesters, with reports of forced imprisonments and Physical abuse is being used to target the country’s Kurdish minority group. In a recent CNN surveyrevealed secret testimonies of sexual violence against protesters, including boys, in Iran’s detention centers since the start of the unrest.

Turk urged the Iranian authorities to

Security forces have reportedly responded to protests by using lethal force against unarmed protesters and bystanders who posed “no threat,” Turk told the 47-member council in Geneva.

According to Turk, more than 14,000 people, including children, have been arrested in connection with the protests. He said at least 21 of them currently face the death penalty and six have already received death sentences.

The unprecedented national uprising has gripped more than 150 cities and 140 universities in all 31 provinces of Iran, Turk added.

More than 300 people have died since the demonstrations began, according to a human rights group.

“We received reports that injured protesters fear going to the hospital for the risk of being arrested by security forces,” he said.

“I am disturbed by reports that even children suspected of participating in protests are being arrested at school, hundreds of university students have been summoned for questioning, threatened or partially suspended from entering university campuses.

“I call on those in power in Iran to fully respect the fundamental freedoms of expression, association and assembly.

“No society can be calcified or petrified as it can stand at a single moment. To attempt to do so, against the will of its people, is futile.”

Iranian security forces have launched a brutal crackdown on anti-regime protesters.

Tehran strongly condemned the “appalling and disgraceful” emergency meeting of the UN Human Rights Council, just as Iran’s foreign ministry announced a national committee to investigate deaths linked to the protest movement.

The deputy vice-president for women and family affairs in Iran, Khadijeh Karimi, who represented Iran at Thursday’s session, condemned Germany’s “politically motivated” decision to convene the session, describing it as “an orchestrated ploy for ulterior motives.”

Countries like Germany, Britain and France lack “the moral credibility to preach to others about human rights and request a special session on Iran,” Karimi said.

She also defended the behavior of Iranian security forces, saying the government took “necessary measures” after Amini’s “unfortunate” death while in the custody of the morality police.

Iran’s security forces’ violent response to protesters has shaken diplomatic relations between Tehran and Western leaders.

The White House introduced its latest on Wednesday round of sanctions on three officials in Iran’s Kurdish region after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said he was “very concerned that the Iranian authorities are reportedly escalating violence against protesters.”

During an interview with Indian broadcaster NDTV on Thursday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani said foreign powers were interfering in Iran’s internal affairs and creating “false narratives”.

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