Several international news agencies published a report on the latest statement by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani regarding the release of several political prisoners in Iran. Quoting Mr. Rouhani, the French news agency AFP wrote, "’We don’t like to have anyone or see anyone in prison. We would like to have empty prisons,’ he told a forum of the Asia Society and Council on Foreign Relations."
Iran Human Rights (IHR) has issued the following response to Mr. Rouhani’s statement: "Mr. Rouhani, don’t empty the prisons by executing prisoners." Recently, in a meeting with the forum of the Asia Society and Council on Foreign Relations, referring to the release of political prisoners, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was quoted as saying, "We want to empty prisons."
Welcoming the release of a number of political prisoners in Iran, IHR urges the international community to pay closer attention to the wave of executions in Iran.
Since the Presidential election of June 14, 2013, at least 213 prisoners have been executed in Iran. 125 of these executions, among them a juvenile offender who had committed an alleged offence at the age of 14, were announced officially by state run media in Iran. At least four women are among those executed.
In the same period less than 100 political prisoners have been given amnesty or released. Some of these prisoners had just few weeks left to serve on their sentences. Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, the spokesperson of IHR said:
“We are very glad that these prisoners have been released, but we should keep in mind that most of the prisoners released in the past weeks had been sentenced to prison based on false allegations, were subjected to maltreatment and had sentences that were illegal according to international standards. We ask the international community and the media to pay closer attention to the wave of executions in Iran. We want the international community to ask Iranian authorities to stop executing and to say, ‘Don’t empty prisons by executing prisoners.' In addition to the death penalty, which is an inhumane punishment, there are several reports indicating many of those executed in Iran have been subjected to unfair trials, torture and forced confessions. Further, their executions are a clear violation of Iran’s international obligations. We urge the international community to react in strong opposition to the wave of executions in Iran.”