Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

iran-christianGENEVA, SWITZERLAND (Worthy News)-- During a press conference in Geneva this month, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran released his latest report, according to Barnabas Aid.

"I report with deep regret that despite overtures and announcements emanating from the newly elected Iranian government, and perhaps even in spite of modest attempts to take steps towards reform, the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran remains of serious concern," said Ahmed Shaheed.

According to the report, at least 49 Iranian Christians were detained in 2013; at least 42 were arrested and of those, 35 were given from one to 10 years' imprisonment for their participation in house churches and other Christian activities. The Christians most prosecuted were converts from Islam and those who evangelized, or otherwise ministered to Iranian Muslims.

The report was also critical of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's proposed charter of citizens' rights that has failed to address laws that discriminate against religious minorities. Rouhani's charter also failed to curb the use of cruel and inhumane punishments, including flogging, hanging, stoning and amputation as well as the use of capital punishment.

After his election in 2013, Rouhani promised to uphold justice and civil rights and to release political prisoners. Although 80 such prisoners were freed prior to his address at the UN General Assembly in September, hundreds more continue to languish in Iranian jails.