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Annual Report on the Death Penalty- 2019

31 Mar

The 12th annual report on the death penalty by Iran Human Rights (IHR) and ECPM (Together Against the Death Penalty) provides an assessment and analysis of the death penalty trends in 2019 in the Islamic Republic of Iran. It sets out the number of executions in 2019, the trend compared to previous years, the legislative framework and procedures, charges, geographic distribution and a monthly breakdown of executions. Lists of the female and juvenile offenders executed in 2019 are also included in the tables. 

The report also looks into the abolitionist movement within Iran, including the forgiveness movement and its contribution to limiting the use of the death penalty, the artists and filmmakers attempting to promote abolition, and the authorities’ attempt to promote the death penalty and crackdown on human rights defenders. 

In 2019, Iran had its fourth Universal Periodic Review (UPR). In March 2020 there will be an opportunity for Iran to engage in a constructive dialogue on human rights. Recommendations on the death penalty given in this round, are included at the end of the report. 

The 2019 report is the result of hard work from IHR members and supporters who took part in reporting, documenting, collecting, analyzing and writing its content. We are especially grateful to IHR sources inside Iran who, by reporting on unannounced and secret executions in 27 different prisons, incur significant risk. Due to the very difficult context, the lack of transparency and the obvious risks and limitations that human rights defenders face in the Islamic Republic of Iran, this report does not give a complete picture of the use of the death penalty in Iran by any means. There are reported executions that are not included in this report due to a lack of sufficient details or an inability to confirm cases through two different sources. However, this report tries to give the most complete and realistic figures possible in the present circumstances3. The current report does not include suspicious deaths of prisoners, nor the hundreds who were killed as a result of direct attempted shooting by the security forces at the protestors during the November nationwide protests. 

ECPM supports the elaboration, editing process, publication and distribution of this report. Problems of transparency over the data and information on the death penalty in Iran should be overcome by a strong strategy of distribution and dissemination. The aim of this report for IHR and ECPM is to bring out the facts and make them known, in order to allow a change of national and international views on the situation of the death penalty in Iran, one of “the world’s leading first executioner.”