Rights & Democracy welcomes UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mrs Louise Arbour’s visit to Iran

The High Commissioner attended a meeting on human rights in Tehran September 3, the state-run news agency IRNA reported. The meeting was organized by the Non-Aligned Movement to address human rights and cultural diversity.

While Iran hosts a meeting on human rights, the Iranian regime continues its brutal repression. Over 100 people have been hanged in the past six months according to media reports in Iran. This does not take into account executions taking place in secret. In July and August, the number of executions took a sharp rise.

Human rights organizations and activists as well as political groups and personalities around the world have condemned the new wave of executions and repression in Iran and called on the international community to intervene.

Rights & Democracy strongly condemns these abuses of fundamental human rights.
Mrs. Arbour has met in Tehran with several human rights activists, including Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Shirin Ebadi and members of a women’s rights campaign who aim to gather one million signatures against discriminatory laws that violate women’s rights.

To underscore its support for women’s rights in Iran, Rights & Democracy added its name to this petition to end legalized discrimination against women.

Rights & Democracy plays an active role in promoting the respect of human rights in Iran. On October 19, 2004, Dr. Ebadi, 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner, visited our offices in Montreal and participated in a meeting that we organized in collaboration with several partners.  Last month, in collaboration with Equitas-International Centre for Human Rights Education, Rights & Democracy hosted a discussion with Nazanin Afshin-Jam, the winner of Miss Canada title in 2003, and an active advocate for bringing to an end the practice of executing children in Iran.

In December 2007, Rights & Democracy will grant Iranian human rights activist, Akbar Ganji, the 2007 John Humphrey Freedom Award. Mr. Ganji is an eminent Iranian journalist who has spent six years in prison for exposing rights abuses committed by Iran’s Fundamentalist regime.