A Statistical Look at the Situation of Iranian Workers over the Past Year

Iranian labor rights activists and workers face ongoing rights violations. 

“Worsening workers’ livelihood rings the alarm. They have to ration a rice sack for the next three months. Many items have vanished from their […] baskets and they [can] afford nothing else but loaves of bread. In this situation, this year, they […] face new problems such as the plan to remove Social Security booklets, mass layoffs, discrimination in recruitment against native laborers, inflation and sky-rocketing prices.”

Ahead of International Workers’ Day, Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) highlights the most crucial issues faced by the Iranian worker during past year. Specifically, this report details issues related to wages, wage arrears (or withheld wages), workplace safety, and union rights.  

Iran is rank 102nd in the world in terms of occupational safety. According to the Statistics and Publication Center of HRA, over the past twelve months (from May 1, 2021, to April 27, 2022), at least 10,895 workers have been killed or injured in work related accidents. This number is a combination of reports made by State media and workers’ rights organizations.

During this period, at least 10,084 workers were injured at work, of which 9,385 cases have been mentioned in 14 official reports or have been part of comments made by officials at either national or provincial levels, and the remainder, 699 cases, were reported by civil and labor rights associations.

At least 811 workers lost their lives in work related accidents, of which 438 deaths were reported by 13 official reports and the remainder, 373 deaths, were not mentioned by officials, but were reported by independent organizations.

According to official reports, falling from tall heights is a leading cause of death in work related incidents, responsible for 41.5% of workplace deaths over the past ten years. 

It is worth noting that although the above-mentioned statistics are  high and thus are of grave concern, one must consider that the numbers do not cover all cases and that actual numbers are presumed much higher.

The regimes lack of transparency remains a concern. The official figures do not add up. The Iranian Legal Medicine Organization stated that “during the last 10 years (2008-2018), 15,997 workers lost their lives in work accidents, of which 230 were women.” Based on these figures, the average number of work related casualties would be significantly higher than the officially-announced death toll of 438.

Wage Arrears (Withheld wages) 

According to statistics compiled by HRA’s Statistics and Publication Center, at least 45,462 workers have more than 1,366 combined months of wage arrears. 

Figure 1: the distribution of wage arrears

Based on data gathered by HRA’s Statistics and Publication Center figure 1 shows the distribution of wage arrears among various economic sectors. The public sector companies and organizations are responsible for 76%. The private sector and energy industry are  14 and 7% respectively. The nature of the organizations responsible for 3% of these wage arrears remains unknown. 

Unfortunately, many official reports fail to provide the number of workers awaiting wage arrears, which prevents the reporting of an accurate number. 

Peaceful Assembly and Association 

Media and civil society organizations have reported 589 workers’ protests and 1,741 trade union protests, which  have increased by 57.6% and decreased by 0.6% resepctively compared to the previous year.

Major labor events in the country over the past year include the workers protests of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company, Kut-e Abdollah Municipality, Railway Services & Technical Construction Engineering Company, and the working and retired teachers and social security pensioners.

Over the past 12 months, numerous cities across the country witnessed a wide range of labour protests with various demands such as addressing insurance issues and wage arrears, the latter sometimes accumulating up to 30 months.

In total, 383 labour strikes and 397 union strikes have been reported, which shows a large increase of 70% and 99% respectively. 

Solidarity among workers in various occupations has grown. Workers have to tackle formidable obstacles of suppression, denial of workers’ rights to protest, suppression of any attempt toward unionization and forming independent labour organizations, and the arrest and imprisonment of labour activists. These challenges present hurdles to many things but notably to organization. 

There are no labour unions in the conventional sense. Workers’ efforts to form an independent workers union are suppressed by security and politically-tainted allegations against workers’ rights activists.  A striking illustration of such allegation and suppression can be seen in the cases of the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, Haft Tappeh SugarCane Syndicate, the Coordination Council of Iranian Teachers’ Trade Associations and the Independent Iranian Workers Union (IIWU).

Many workers have been summoned, arrested or convicted for peaceful activities such as protests against low wages, signing a petition in support of labour unions, posting photos of workers’ demonstrations on the internet or even receiving an invitation letter to attend world trade union meetings.

At least 69 workers and workers’ rights activists have been arrested in the past 12 months. The top three cases are the arrest of 30 citizens during International Labor Day rallies, 9 workers of Municipality of Ahvaz, and 4 workers of Mobin Mining and Road Construction. 

Additionally, 7 workers and workers’ rights activists have been sentenced to a combined total of 248 months imprisonment, a combined total of 124 lashes and paying a combined total fine of 23 million Tomans. In the reporting period, 7 workers committed self-immolation, and 8 workers committed suicide. 2 workers were beaten by the security forces. 20 were summoned by security or judicial institutions. 2,576 workers were subjected to layoffs; 8,250 involuntarily lost their jobs; 1,645,739 workers remain deprived of any labour insurance scheme; 8,978 workers were suspended from work due to factory closure or other reasons for which the employer is liable. 

Moreover, 185 trade union activists were arrested. 7 activists were sentenced to a combined total of 229 months imprisonment. 52 individuals were summoned by security or judicial authorities and 3,555 businesses were closed by Public Security Police or other authorities. 

During the past 12 months, retired and working teachers and educators from dozens of cities across the country staged numerous protests, strikes, and rallies to ask for their demands. 1,030 protest gatherings and 372 labour strikes have been recorded. Following these protests, 50 teachers were summoned, 12 were convicted, 9 were subjected to violence by police and security forces and one teacher committed suicide. 6 teachers and teachers union activists were sentenced to a combined total of 169 months in prison and a combined total fine of 21.5 million Tomans.

Prohibition of child labor and the provision of free education for children, the establishment of the highest level of safety standards in the workplace, and the elimination of discriminatory laws for women and migrant workers are other demands of the working community. “These practices must also be the demands of the international community as they are in fact the States obligations under international law,” says Skylar Thompson, HRA’s Senior Advocacy Coordinator. “Iran must ensure provisions are in place to protect workers rights and that includes their right to peaceful assembly and association.”

Iranian Women’s participation in the labour market is significantly less than men. In addition, women carrying less legal protections broadly in Iran’s judicial framework are less protected by labor law and receive fewer benefits. As a result, female workers have less bargaining power than their male counterparts. Production and industrial employers are also less inclined to employ married women, and in some cases employ single women with a pre-condition not to marry or become pregnant, practices which are in it of themselves discriminatory and vastly problematic. 

The Economic Situation

On raising the minimum wage and its effect the economic situation of the Iranian people, the board member of the Islamic Labour Council of Tehran Province, Alireza Fathi stated: “This begs the question of whether raising the minimum wage at the beginning of each year can catch up with the inflation jump in the first three months of the year, which reduces workers’ purchasing power to one third.”

“As labor law dictates, from 30% insurance contribution, 23% is employer’s share and 7% employee’s. Workers are wondering for which social services, housing or family doctor, these insurance contributions are spent”, he added.

Likewise, the head of the National Center of Construction Workers Associations, Akbar Shokat stated: “high inflation and soaring prices on a daily basis have worsened workers’ livelihood to such an extent that the minimum wage announced for this year can only cover the living costs for a few days in one month.” 

A worker of the Municipality of Mariwan describes their diminishing purchasing power: “We have not eaten meat for many months. We spare the yoghurt only for our guests. Earlier, we could afford tomato or potato omelettes several times a week. Now, with such high prices of eggs, we have to suffice to cooked or fried potatoes.”

The head of the Bushehr Trade Association explains how workers’ problems last year have doubled: “Worsening workers’ livelihood rings the alarm. They have to ration a rice sack for the next three months. Many items have vanished from their consumption basket and they afford nothing else but the loaves of bread. In this situation, this year, they have to face new problems such as the plan to remove Social Security booklets, mass layoffs, discrimination in recruitment against native laborers, inflation and sky-rocketing prices.”

As many experts and workers’ rights activists point out, the minimum wage as announced by The Supreme Labor Council falls lower than the actual inflation rate and consumption expenditure of households. Among other reasons, this explains the increase in workers’ protests and their disempowerment to raise their voices.

Prohibition of child labor and the provision of free education for children, the establishment of the highest level of safety standards in the workplace, and the elimination of discriminatory laws for women and migrant workers are other demands of the working community. “These practices must also be the demands of the international community as they are in fact the States obligations under international law,” says Skylar Thompson, HRA’s Senior Advocacy Coordinator. “Iran must ensure provisions are in place to protect workers rights and that includes their right to peaceful assembly and association.”

As Iranian workers celebrate International Workers’ Day there is little prospect of improvement through domestic reform or remedy nonetheless the State remains obligated to uphold its international human rights obligations under both the ICCPR and the ICESCR. Therefore the State is obligated to respect, protect, and fulfill the rights of workers and labour rights activists both in the workplace and when choosing to take to the streets in peaceful assembly or to gather in association. 

 

Figure2: Occupational Accident Classification Chart as documented by HRA

Based on data gathered by HRA’s Statistics and Publication Center, (a collection of 3,730 reports published in the 12 month reporting period) 34% of workplace accidents were caused by being struck by hard objects, 20% by falling from tall heights, 7% by motor vehicle accidents, 6% construction accidents, 10% factory accidents, 10% fire accidents, 3% accidents in the wells, 4% electrocutions, 2% accidents in the mine, 2% suffocation and 1% agricultural accidents.

 

 


For further inquiries please contact Skylar Thompson, Senior Advocacy Coordinator Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) at [email protected]

Iranians celebrate the Persian New Year Despite yet another Gruesome Year of Abuse at the Hands of the Regime

HRANA– As Iranians celebrate the Persian New Year,  HRANA takes a look back at the year 1400 Hijri (March 21, 2021 – March 16, 2022). 

The regime’s security and judicial authorities continued to systematically violate human rights–including the right of freedom of expression, freedom of religion, and the right to discrimination. The regime remained steadfast in its commitment to arbitrarily prosecute and torture human rights activists, execute juvenile offenders after disproportionate and lengthy detentions, it failed to meet obligations to protect women and gender minorities against violence, it took dual and foreign nationals hostage, held prisoners in inhuman conditions, failed to meet obligations to protect the right to health, namely with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic, it continued notorious torture of prisoners, imposed cruel corporal punishments such as flogging, deprived prisoners of conscience adequate medical treatment, and imposed harsh, disproportionate sentences on political prisoners. The list goes on. 

 

Arrests

Based on data gathered from 6,722 reports registered by the Statistics and Publication Center of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA):

  • 1,734 people were arrested for their political activities or the expression of their beliefs and opinions. 
  • 141 people were arrested for adopting a lifestyle considered by the regime unacceptable–including for hosting or attending private parties that were deemed to be in violation of Islamic principles. 
  • 11 people were arrested for modeling, dancing, playing/listening to inappropriate music, and other cultural activities.

 

Of those arrested:

  • 1,047 people were detained for expressing their opinion and beliefs, including 22 minors, 117 workers’ rights activists, 92 journalists (and social media) activists, 64 religious minorities, 6 womens’ rights defenders, and 370 ethnic minorities.

*From the latter, the charges against 347 arrestees are unknown. However, considering HRA’s knowledge of the security institutions in any given area, these arrests have been included in the category of ethnic minorities.

The above figures exclude hundreds of people who were arrested and dozens who were killed or injured during the July 2021 Khuzestan protests (over water shortage and mismanagement), The figure also excludes at least 214 arrestees (including 13 minors) during the 2021 Isfahan water protests. The Security forces and police brutally cracked down on protestors using batons, tear gas, and pellet guns.

 

Sentencing 

Across the country, Public and Revolutionary Courts handled a total of 310 legal cases amounting to a combined total of 12,760 months in prison and a combined total of  667,250,000 tomans in fines (approx. 22,241 USD). In addition, the courts handed down a combined total of 556 months of suspended imprisonment for charges related to political activities. 

Iran’s judicial system continued imposing “inhuman” punishments which are at odds with fundamental human rights and dignity. In a gruesome example, the courts ruled for the mutilation of eyes –which was carried out. The courts continued to issue flogging sentences contrary to international obligations. In addition, issued a combined total of 4,081 lashes (a combined total of 397 lashes carried out in the given period). 

 

Child Rights 

Given that many child abuse cases are silenced by families and government institutions, the available statistics do not reflect an accurate depiction of the issue. Nonetheless, at least 7,764 child abuse cases, 16 cases of sexual abuse and rape, 16 cases of juvenile homicide, 4 cases of juvenile honor killings, 3 self-immolations, 92 suicide attempts, 3 acid attacks, 29 cases of child trafficking and sales, and more than 20 thousands child marriages. In addition, 3 million children dropped out of school in the given time period. 

Although there is no accurate data on the number of child laborers due to activities of organized crime institutions and the government’s failure to tackle this issue, the Iranian Scientific Association of Social Work (ISASW) estimates at least seven million children are active in the workforce. 

 

Women’s Rights 

At least 21,594 cases of domestic violence against women were recorded. Considering the flaws in the law system and entrenched gender inequality in society, the real figures are likely much higher. During the given period there were a registered 12 acid attacks, 4 rapes and/or sexual assaults, 15 female homicides, 10 female self-immolations, 4 suicides, and 20 honor killings. 

 

Use of Force (Kolbars and Sukhtbars)

In the given period, a total of 203 citizens were shot by the regime’s military forces. In these incidents, 91 people were shot dead including 26 Kolbars (Cross Border Carriers), 13 Sukhtbar (Fuel Border Carriers), and 52 other civilians. 112 people were injured, of the injured, 82 people were Kolbars, 12 Sukhtbar, and 18 other civilians.

Additionally, 34 Kolbars were affected by climate and geographic factors such as freezing temperatures and falling from heights. In these accidents, 21 Kolbars were injured and 13 ultimately died. 

It is of note that landmine blasts took the life of 25 citizens and maimed 65 others during this year. Most of these landmines are the remnants of the Iran-Iraq War. The Regime still shirks its responsibility to clear these landmines and hence endangers the life of its citizens living in the mine-affected areas.

 

Executions  

Iran has been one of the world’s top executioners. In the given time period, at least 333 people were executed, including 12 women and 3 juvenile offenders who were under the age of 18 at the time of committing the crime. In addition, the courts sentenced 105 defendants to the death penalty.

 

Prisoners Rights 

Based on HRANA reports, 42 prisoners have been victims of physical assault, 248 prisoners were deprived of adequate medical care, 68 prisoners were held in solitary confinement cells, 193 went on hunger strike as a last resort to achieve urgent demands, 93 inmates were forcefully sent to a prison in exile, 207 inmates were threatened or subjected to regime pressure, 15 inmates were deprived of visitation, 17 inmates were tortured physically or mentally, 21 inmates died in prison by diseases, one inmate committed suicide, one committed self-immolation, 5 inmates were killed by prison guards/officials, 93 prisoners were denied access to a lawyer, 1,889 inmates were held in harsh and inhuman conditions, 34 prisoners were subjected to torture as a means of forced confessions, 203 political prisoners were co-housed with the prisoners of violent crimes, and 88 inmates were denied necessary medical furlough.

There have been 199 incommunicado detentions and 270 cases of detainees kept in an unknown state regarding their sentence.

 

Workers Rights 

During the given period, at least 10,669 workers were laid off or fired, 764 killed and 9,441 injured in workplace accidents. Moreover, 993,726 workers went without work insurance. There were also a reported 68 factory closures. In addition, at least 31,672 workers reported delays in payments.

 

Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association

In the given period 2,769 protest rallies were held across 24 provinces. 

Of the 2,769 documented rallies:

  • 610 workers’ rallies
  • 1,769 union rallies
  • 80 rallies against the suppression of freedom of expression
  • 48 student rallies
  • 262 rallies held by the victims of financial frauds or other fraudulent acts 

In addition, there were 392 labor strikes and 368 union strikes.

 

Concluding Note

Iran’s regime does not allow independent human rights organizations to report and collect data freely. As a result, these figures reveal merely the tip of the iceberg of the human rights situation in Iran. Therefore, it is noteworthy to mention that the figures provided in this report are merely based on the reports of civil society organizations like HRANA and its Statistics and Publication Center.

 

_________________________

For further inquiries please contact Skylar Thompson, Senior Advocacy Coordinator Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) at [email protected]

HRA Highlights Sixty-Nine Dual and Foreign Nationals Detained by Iran From 2003 to Present 

HRANA – HRA has compiled a list of sixty-nine dual and foreign nationals detained by Iran since 2003. The list illustrates a deeply flawed judiciary plagued with the ongoing use of arbitrary detention fueled by an extraordinary lack of due process. It is noteworthy that in recent years a number of these arrests have been made by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). It is overwhelmingly clear that Iran continues to use dual and foreign nationals as political bargaining chips, often charging individuals in connection with espionage and citing national security concerns—with an alarming lack of evidence. HRA has documented extensive evidence of unfair trials, often conducted in a language the accused does not understand, with the denial of legal counsel, disproportionate sentencing, prolonged solitary confinement, and interrogations marred with torture leading to forced and sometimes televised confessions. The list goes on. The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has commented on Iran’s trend of detaining dual nationals confirming that a number of those detained were targeted based on their “nationality or social origin”. 

The detention of dual and foreign nationals is seemingly targeted and systematic and it must be widely condemned. Iran cannot be allowed to use human beings as players in its political chessboard. Despite the foreign ministries’ November 2021 guarantee vowing the safety of dual nationals traveling to Iran, the continued practice and failure to release those currently detained sends a starkly opposite message to Iranians that enjoy dual nationality. A message that it is not safe to return to Iran without a well-founded fear of detention. There is no secret that Iran views dual nationals in this way. The case of Nazanin Zarcari Radcliffe is an unfortunate example of just how serious Iran takes the game. They view Nazanin as ransom for a four-hundred million pound debt owed by the United Kingdom daring back to a 1979 arms deal. It has become clear that Nazanin’s freedom hinges on the payment of said funds. She is not alone. There must be sustained international pressure to release Nazanin and all dual and foreign nationals currently detained by Iran. It’s a dangerous game when politics become more important than the very lives politicians were elected to serve. 

In a letter written from prison, currently detained dual national, Siamak Namazi said Iran’s continued use of hostage diplomacy was like “sprinkl[ing] salt on the wound of distrust.” This is surely a shared sentiment in numerous diplomatic circles attempting to tackle the issue.  

The following list documents sixty-nine dual and foreign nationals detained by Iran from 2003 to the present day. A number of those detained were released prior to the completion of their sentence–illustrating the arbitrariness of the practice. Some were never fortunate enough to return home and ultimately faced execution at the hands of their abductors. While several have been released a number still await a strategic move on the chessboard that has, unfortunately, become their reality. American, British, and Canadian citizens account for the highest number of detentions among dual nationals–the highest number of detentions occurring in 2016. It is worth noting that the actual number of detentions may be higher than reported. Dual national detentions significantly outnumber that of foreign nationals reaffirming the widespread distrust in Iran’s commitment to the safety of dual nationals wishing to “return home”.

(*) denotes the individual remains imprisoned in Iran or otherwise has been denied the ability to return home.

1. Zahra “Ziba” Kazemi-Ahmadabadi

Date of Arrest: June 24, 2003
Date of Release: Killed by Iranian officials following her arrest
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Photographing restricted areas
Conviction: N/A

 


2. Stephane Lherbier

Date of Arrest: November 6, 2005
Date of Release: January 2007
Nationality: French
Charges: Unknown
Conviction:Unknown

 


3. Donald Klein

Date of Arrest:  November 6, 2005
Date of Release: January, 2007
Nationality: German
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


4. Robert Alan Levinson

Date of Arrest: March 2007
Date of Release: Disappeared on March 9, 2007 on Kish Island, Iran
Nationality: American
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


5. Haleh Esfandiari

Date of Arrest: May 8, 2007
Date of Release: August 21, 2007
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges:  Acting against national security and acting to overthrow the regime
Conviction: Unknown

 


6. Hamid Ghasemi Shal

Date of Arrest: 2008
Date of Release: October 2013
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Espionage. In retrial, the charge was changed to assembly and collusion against national security
Conviction: Initially sentenced to death. Later, the verdict was reduced to 5 years imprisonment


7. Saeed Malekpour

Date of Arrest: October 2008
Date of Release: Released from prison before the end of his sentence
Nationality: Iranian-Resident of Canada
Charges: Cybercrime (Pornography)
Conviction: Life imprisonment

 


8. Hossein Derakhshan

Date of Arrest: November 1, 2008
Date of Release: November 19, 2015
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Collaboration with hostile countries, propaganda against the regime, advocating for anti-regime groups, blasphemy, setting up and directing websites with obscene content.
Conviction: 19 years and 6 months imprisonment, five year prohibition from membership and activity on social media


9. Roxana Saberi

Date of Arrest: January 31, 2009
Date of Release: May 11, 2009
Nationality: American
Charges: Espionage and gathering confidential and classified documents
Conviction: 2 years suspended imprisonment

 


10. Maziar Bahari

Date of Arrest: June 1, 2009
Date of Release:
October 13, 2009 
Nationality: 
Iranian-Canadian
Charges:
Assembly and collusion to act against national security, gathering and holding confidential and classified documents, propaganda against the regime, offensive statements against the Supreme Leader of Iran and the President, disturbing public order
Conviction:
13 years and six month imprisonment and 74 lashes


* 11. Fariba Adelkhah

Date of arrest: June 6, 2009
Date of release: Unknown
Citizenship: Iranian-French
Charges: Propaganda against the regime and collusion against national security
Sentence: 6 years and 6 months imprisonment

 


12. Clotilde Reiss

Date of Arrest: July 1, 2009
Date of Release: August 2009
Nationality: French
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 5 years imprisonment, later changed to a fine when she left Iran on May 16, 2016

 


13. Kian Tajbakhsh

Date of Arrest: July 2009
Date of Release: March 13, 2010
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: 5 years imprisonment

 


14. Sarah Shourd

Date of Arrest: July 30, 2009
Date of Release: September 14, 2010
Nationality: American
Charges: Illegally entering the country and espionage
Conviction: Released on bail. She left Iran after her release.

 


15. Vahik Abramian

Date of Arrest: February 20, 2010
Date of Release: March 2011
Nationality: Iranian-Dutch
Charges: Preaching Christian beliefs
Conviction: One year in prison. He returned to the Netherlands after release.

 


16. Shane Bauer

Date of Arrest: September 14, 2010
Date of Release: December 27, 2011
Nationality: American
Charges: Illegally entering the country and espionage
Conviction: 8 years imprisonment

 


17. Josh Fattal

Date of Arrest: September 14, 2010
Date of Release: December 27, 2011
Nationality: American
Charges: Illegally entering the country and espionage
Conviction: 8 years imprisonment

 


18. Amir Mirza Hekmati

Date of Arrest: December 7, 2011
Date of Release: January 2016
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: Initially sentenced to death, later reduced to 10 years imprisonment. He was released through a prisoner swap with the U.S. Government


19. Masoud Karami

Date of Arrest: February 14, 2012
Date of Release: Unknown
Nationality: Iranian-Norwegian
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


20. Saeed Abedini

Date of Arrest: September 2012
Date of Release: Mid-January 2016
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Holding underground church services with the purpose of acting against national security
Conviction: 8 years in prison

 


21. Afshin Shafei

Date of Arrest: December 16, 2012
Date of Release: January 2013
Nationality: Iranian-Norwegian
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Released on bail and left the country

 


22. Roya Saberi Nejad Nikbakht

Date of Arrest: September 28, 2013
Date of Release: Unknown
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: Blasphemy and offensive statements against the heads of three branches of government.
Conviction: 4 years imprisonment

 


23-30. Seven Unidentified Slovak Citizens

Date of Arrest: July 2013
Date of Release: September 2013
Nationality: Slovak
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: Unknown

 


31. Jason Rezaian 

Date of Arrest: July 22, 2014
Date of Release:
January 2016
Nationality:
Iranian-American
Charges:
Espionage and acting against national security
Conviction:
Released though a prisoner swap. In return, the U.S. government released three Iranian prisoners.


* 32. Hasan Rastegari Majd

Date of Arrest: October 27, 2014
Date of Release: Imprisoned in Urmia Prison
Nationality: Iranian-Turkish
Charges: In the first case, “propaganda against the regime through collaboration with an anti-regime group”. In the second case, “offensive statements and propaganda against the regime”. In the third case, “causing unrest in prison and clashing with prison guards”.
Conviction: 15 years imprisonment and revocation of Iranian citizenship for his first case. 2 years imprisonment for the second case and one year for the third.


33. Nosratollah (Farzad) Khosravi-Roodsari

Date of Arrest: 2014
Date of Release: January, 2016
Nationality: Iranian- American
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Released through a prisoner swap with the U.S. Government.

 


34. Mostafa Azizi

Date of Arrest: February 1, 2015
Date of Release: April, 2016
Nationality: Iranian-Resident of Canada
Charges: Assembly and collusion against national security, propaganda against the regime, offensive statements against the Supreme Leader of Iran.
Conviction: 3 years and a fine


35. Nizar Zakka

Date of Arrest: 2015
Date of Release: June 11, 2019
Nationality: Lebanese citizen, US resident
Charges: Espionage and collaboration with hostile countries
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment and a fine of 4.2 million dollars


* 36. Siamak Namazi

Date of arrest: October 2015
Date of release:
N/A
Citizenship:
Iranian-American
Charges:
Collaborating with a hostile government (U.S.A.)
Sentence:
10 years imprisonment

 


37. Matthew Trevithick

Date of Arrest: December 8, 2015
Date of Release:
January 2016
Nationality:
American
Charges:
Espionage
Conviction:
Unknown

 


38. Sanya Bobnevich

Date of Arrest: December 13, 2015
Date of Release: January 2016
Nationality: Croatian-Swedish
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Released on bail

 


39. Kamran Ghaderi

Date of arrest: December 2015
Date of release: N/A
Citizenship: Iranian-Austrian
Charges: Espionage
Sentence: 10 years imprisonment

 


40. Bagher Namazi

Date of Arrest: March 2016
Date of Release: Spring 2019. Released due to need for medical treatment.
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Collaboration with a hostile country (U.S.A.)
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment

 


* 41. Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

Date of Arrest: April, 2016
Date of Release: First case, March 2021. Second case, pending removal of travel ban restrictions.
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: First case, Collusion against the State. Second case, Propaganda against the regime.
Conviction: First case, 5 years imprisonment. Second case, 1-year imprisonment and 1-year travel ban


42. Ahmadreza Jalali

Date of Arrest: April 2016
Date of Release: N/A
Nationality: Iranian-Swedish
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: Executed

 


43. Homa Hoodfar

Date of Arrest: June 6, 2016
Date of Release: October 2016
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


44. Reza (Rabin) Shahini 

Date of Arrest: July 15, 2016
Date of Release: April 2017
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Collaboration with Voice of America news channel (VOA) and appearance in their TV programs, propaganda against the regime in favor of anti-regime groups, membership in anti-regime groups such as the proponents of the re-establishing the monarchy in Iran, instigating people to disturb national security and offensive statements against former and current Supreme Leader of Iran.
Conviction: 18 years imprisonment, of which 9 years is enforceable. He was released on bail of 200 million tomans.


45. Afarin Neysari

Date of Arrest: July 20, 2016
Date of Release: Mid-July, 2018
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 16 years imprisonment. Released on bail of 40 billion tomans

 


46. Karan Vafadari

Date of Arrest: July 20, 2016
Date of Release: Mid-July, 2018
Nationality: Iranian- American
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 27 years imprisonment. Released on bail of 40 billion tomans

 


47. Xiyue Wang 

Date of Arrest: Summer 2016
Date of Release: November 2019
Nationality: Chinese-American
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment. Released through a prisoner swap with the U.S. government in exchange for an Iranian Prisoner.

 


48. Abdolrasoul Dorri-Esfahani

Date of Arrest: August, 2016
Date of Release: Unknown
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Espionage and collaboration with the British Intelligence Service
Conviction: 5 years imprisonment

 


49. Anoosheh Ashoori

Date of Arrest: 2017
Date of Release: N/A
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: Spying for Israel and acquisition of illegitimate property
Conviction: 12 years imprisonment and fine of 33 thousand euros

 


* 50. Morad Tahbaz

Date of Arrest: January 24, 2018
Date of Release: Jailed in Evin Prison
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment

 


51. Kavous Seyed-Emami

Date of Arrest: January 2018
Date of Release: Died in prison
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: Unknown

 


52. Aras Amiri

Date of Arrest: March 2018
Date of Release: July 2021
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment

 


53. Bahareh Amidi (Wife of Emad Sharghi)

Date of Arrest: April 4, 2018
Date of Release: 2018 (likely shortly after arrest)
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


54. Abbas Edalat

Date of Arrest: April 15, 2018
Date of Release: January, 2019
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


55. Michael White

Date of Arrest: July 1, 2018
Date of Release: June 4, 2020
Nationality: American
Charges: Offensive statements against the Supreme Leader of Iran and doxing.
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment

 


56. Kylie Moore Gilbert

Date of Arrest: Fall 2018
Date of Release: November 25, 2020
Nationality: Australian-British
Charges: Acting against national security
Conviction: 10 years imprisonment

 


57. Nelly Erin-Cambervelle

Date of Arrest: October 21, 2018
Date of Release:
February 24, 2019
Nationality:
French
Charges:
Allegedly signing an illegal mining contract
Conviction:
Unknown

 

 


58. Meimanat Hosseini-Chavoshi

Date of Arrest: November, 2018
Date of Release:
January, 2019
Nationality:
Iranian-Australian
Charges:
Collaboration with foreign countries, assembly and collusion against national security through conducting research on the decrease in birth rate
Conviction:
5 years imprisonment


59. Kamil Ahmadi

Date of Arrest: August 11, 2019
Date of Release: November 18, 2019
Nationality: Iranian-British
Charges: Acquisition of illegal wealth through collaboration with institutions hostile to the regime.
Conviction: 9 years imprisonment and a fine of 600,000 euros

 


60. Akbar Lakestani

Date of Arrest: September 28, 2019
Date of Release: November 13, 2019
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Propaganda against the regime
Conviction: Released on bail. He left the country after his release.

 


61. Ruhollah Zam

Date of Arrest: October 2019
Date of Release: Executed
Nationality: Iranian-Resident of France
Charges: Spreading corruption on earth, launching and managing the Telegram channel “Amadnews” and “Sedaye Mardom” to disturb national security, spying for Israel and another country in the region, spying for the French intelligence service, collaborating with the U.S. government, assembly and collusion to act against national security, propaganda against the regime, membership in news outlet “Saham News” to with intent to disturb national security, instigating people, gathering classified information, spreading lies, Instigating military forces of the regime to revolt and disobey, blasphemy, and acquisition of illegal properties
Conviction: Death penalty

 


* 62. Yulia Yuzik

Date of Arrest: October 3, 2019
Date of Release:
October 10, 2019
Nationality:
Russian
Charges:
Espionage
Conviction:
Detained for one week. Left Iran immediately following her release.

 


* 63. Benjamin Briere

Date of Arrest: May 2020
Date of Release: N/A
Nationality: French
Charges: Espionage and propaganda against the regime
Conviction: 8 years imprisonment

 


* 64. Reza Eslami

Date of Arrest: May 10, 2020
Date of Release: Imprisoned
Nationality: Iranian-Canadian
Charges: Collaboration with hostile countries (U.S.A.) against the Islamic Republic of Iran through participation in educational courses about the Rule of Law in Czech Republic.
Conviction: 7 years imprisonment, prohibited from teaching and leaving the country.


* 65. Jamshid Sharmahd

Date of Arrest: August 2020
Date of Release: Unknown
Nationality: Iranian-German
Charges: Unknown
Conviction: Unknown

 


* 66. Nahid Taghavi

Date of Arrest: October 16, 2020
Date of Release: N/A
Nationality: Iranian-German
Charges: Participation in forming unlawful groups and “propaganda against the regime.
Conviction: 10 years and 8 months imprisonment

 


67. Emad Sharghi

Date of Arrest: Fall 2020
Date of Release: N/A
Nationality: Iranian-American
Charges: Espionage and gathering military intelligence
Conviction: 9 years imprisonment and a fine of 600,000 euros

 


68. Tavakoli

Date of Arrest: Unknown
Date of Release: Unknown
Nationality: Dual Nationalities
Charges: Espionage
Conviction: 8 years and 6 months imprisonment

 


* 69. Habib Chaab

Date of Arrest: November 2021
Date of Release:
Unknown
Nationality:
Iranian-Swedish
Charges:
Spreading corruption on earth, leading an anti-regime group, attemptign to sabotage public and private places and planning terrorism operations, destruction of public property
Conviction:
Unknown

_________________________

For further inquiries please contact Skylar Thompson, Senior Advocacy Coordinator Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) at [email protected]

Annual Analytical and Statistical Report on Human Rights in Iran for the year 2021

This leaflet contains the Annual Analytical and Statistical Report on Human Rights in Iran for the year 2021. The report, prepared by the Department of Statistics and Publications of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA), is the result of daily effort on the part of the organization and its members, and as part of a daily statistic and census project that was started by this organization in 2009.
This annual report on human rights violations in Iran collects, analyzes, and documents 5683 reports concerning human rights, gathered from various news sources during 2021 [January 1st to December 20th]. 38% of reports analyzed came from sources gathered and reported by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), while 38% came from official Iranian government sources or sources close to the government. 24% of reports came from other human rights news agencies.

This is the brief version and the full report is available for download in PDF format. Click here

The following 53-pages include statistical overviews and related charts regarding women’s rights, children’s rights, prisoners’ rights, etc. Despite the 1.5% increase in reports of human rights violations in provinces other than Tehran from last year’s Annual Report, data from this year indicates that smaller cities lack adequate reporting and monitoring of human rights.

This report is the result the work of courageous human rights activists in Iran who pay a very high cost for as they strive to enact their humanitarian beliefs. However, for obvious reasons (i.e. existing governmental limitations, bans on the free exchange of information and government interference with the existence of human rights organizations in the country), this report by no means is free of errors and cannot solely reflect the actual status of human rights in Iran. Having said that, it should be emphasized that this report is considered one of the most accurate, comprehensive, and authentic reports on human rights conditions in Iran. It serves as a very informative resource for human rights activists and organizations working on Iran who seek to better understand the challenges and opportunities that they may face.

MONITORING

The following map illustrates the number of reports per province made by human rights organizations and news agencies. This is a direct reflection of each province’s current capacity for civil rights (2021).

The highest number of reports were published in December, while the lowest number of reports published occurred in April.
38% of reports analyzed came from sources gathered and reported by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), while 38% came from official Iranian government sources or sources close to the government. 24% of reports came from other human rights news agencies.
In 2021, at least 2,300 protest rallies were held across 24 provinces. Of these, 1,261 were union rallies, 618 were workers’ rallies, 301 were rallies related to economic hardship, 77 were rallies against the suppression of freedom of expression, and 43 were student rallies. In addition to the rallies, there were also 339 labor strikes and 192 union strikes.
As indicated in the distribution map, there exists a major discrepancy between the capital Tehran, and other parts of the country in terms of the number of published reports. This is while the census of 2016 reported a population of 13,267,637 in Tehran, compared to a population of 66,658,633 in the rest of the country.

ETHNIC MINORITIES

In the field of violations of rights for national and ethnic minorities, a total of 390 reports were registered by the Department of Statistics and Publication of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) in 2021. According to these reports, at least 445 people were arrested. It should be noted that the charges against 409 of these detainees remain unknown.
A total of 61 people were sentenced to 1348 months in prison, which breaks down to 1171 months of imprisonment and 177 months of suspended imprisonment. A total of 103 individuals were summoned by the security and judicial institutions.
Compared to the previous year there has been a 55% increase in the arrest of ethnic minorities and a 21% decrease in prison sentences.
As the following bar graph illustrates, the highest number of violations occurred in the month of January while the lowest occurred in the month of December.

RELIGIOUS MINORITIES

In this category, 144 reports have been registered by the Department of Statistics in 2021. These reports include 57 arrests, 11 cases where religious minorities were prevented from economic activities, 39 summons by judicial and security institutions, 24 cases of deprivation from education, and 60 cases of police home raids.
Judicial authorities have registered 2 cases of desecration, 4 cases of imprisonment, 5 issuances of travel bans (which violate of freedom of movement,) and 6 cases of individuals brought to trial on the basis of religious belief.
81 members of religious minorities were sentenced by judicial institutions to a total of 4174 months of imprisonment. In addition, 4 people were fined one hundred and eighty million tomans (42840 USD), 1 person was sentenced to 74 lashes, and 10 people were deprived of social rights.
The number of citizens arrested in the category of religious minorities has decreased by 25% in 2021 compared to 2020, and the prison sentences issued by the judiciary have decreased by 17%
The highest number of violations have been reported in April, while the lowest occurred in December.
71.77% of human rights reports regarding violations against religious minorities related to violations against Baha’is, 14.29% to Christians, 7.48% to Sunnis 2.04% to Yarsans 1.02% to Dervishes, 0.34% to Jews, and 3.06% to “Others”. Note that reports labeled as “Other” are those that did not belong to a specific group of religious minorities.

FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION

674 reports of violations against freedom of thought and expression have been registered by the Department of Statistics this year. These violations included 1043 individual arrests, 256 summons to judiciary and security authorities, 2 reports of publications banned, and 21 convictions for publications.
111 cases were tried by judicial authorities. 17 cases involved the issuance of travel bans, 64 involved execution of prison sentences, 34 involved house searches, 17 involved internet disruption, 2 involved telecommunication disruptions, 39 involved beatings, 44 involved harassment in the form of threats and intimidation, 77 involved assembly, and 26 involved preventing assembly.
In 2021, 215 arrestees were sentenced to a total of 10140 months of imprisonment. This breaks down to 9541 months in prison and 599 months of suspended prison terms.
Additionally, 24 people were fined a total of 603,575,000 tomans (143,650.85 USD), 16 people were sentenced to a total 998 lashes, and there were 22 cases of deprivation from civil rights.
Compared to 2020, reports regarding violations of freedom of expression have increased by 12%, sentences issued by the judiciary have decreased by 48% based on the number of people tried, and prison sentences decreased by 54%.
Below are charts highlighting violations of the right to freedom of expression.

TRADE UNIONS AND ASSOCIATIONS

1173 reports were registered by the Department of Statistics and Publications related to the rights of trade unions and other associations. 26 members of trade unions were arrested, and 2 individuals were sentenced to a total of 67 months in prison. There were 8 summons to judicial and security institutions, and 23 cases where facilities were closed.
Also reported were instances where 3 people were fined a total 23,500,000 tomans (5593 USD), 3 people received a total of 74 lashes, as well as 2 cases of suicide, 4 cases of houses searched and 5 cases of harassment in the form of beatings. 4 cases were tried by judicial authorities, 405 cases were dismissed, with 147 months of deferral.
In 2021, at least 1261 protests and 192 union strikes were held. There were 4 reported instances of suppression of assembly. Most of these protests were related to salary/wage demands from corporations, bad economic conditions, and lack of proper management of corporations.
It should be noted that due to the compulsory military service for men in Iran and its classification as a job in the annual budget of the country, this group was also examined. In the past year, at least 4 soldiers committed suicide. Various reasons for this are cited, including conscription itself, the high pressure military environment, forced labor, and denial of human dignity.
In reports related to trade unions and associations there has been a 44% decrease in the number of arrests and an 87% decrease in sentences issued compared to the previous year.

ACADEMIA/ RIGHT TO EDUCATION

The Department of Statistics and Publication of Human Rights Activists in Iran registered 56 reports related to violations of academic rights in 2021. 3 students were arrested, and as, as mentioned in the religious rights section of this report, 24 students were prevented from continuing their education because of their religion.
In the category of academia and the right to education, there has been a 50% decrease in the number of arrests. Per our reports, 7 students were sentenced to 160 months in prison and 74 lashes.
Monthly comparisons of the violation of academic rights based on the number of reports, as the following graph illustrates, reveals the highest number of violations occurred in the month of September while the lowest instance is observed in the month of March.

RIGHT TO LIFE (DEATH PENALTY)

288 reports related to the death penalty were have been registered by the Department of Statistics and Publication of Human Rights Activists Association in Iran in 2021. This included 85 death sentences and 299 executions. Based on the announced identifications of some of the individuals executed, 259 were male and 15 were female.
In addition, 4 juvenile offenders were executed in 2021, meaning they were under the age of 18 at the time they committed the crime.
According to these reports, 51% of the executions were based on murder charges, while 40% were related to drug-related charges. 4% of individuals executed were charged with “waging war against God” and 3% were charged with rape. For 2% of executions the charges were unknown.
Of those executed in 2021, 5% were female, and 87% were male, while the gender of the other 8% is unknown.
Executions carried out in 2021 compared to 2020 increased by 26%. The number of death sentences issued decreased by 10%.

CULTURAL RIGHTS

23 reports were registered by the Department of Statistics and Publication of Human Rights Activists Association in Iran related to violations of cultural rights in 2021. This included reports of 6 arrests, as well as the report that 2 individuals were sentenced to 84 months of imprisonment. 7 individuals were summoned to judicial and security organizations. 1 license was revoked and 1 person was banned from working.There were also 4 trials by judicial authorities, 1 house search, 4 cases of obstruction and interference with publications, and 1 case of the destruction of a historical site.
In this category, arrests have decreased by 77% compared to the previous year.
In a monthly comparison, the highest number of violations were reported in May, while the lowest were reported in April, October, and December.

WORKERS’ RIGHTS

The Department of Statistics of Human Rights Activists Association in Iran registered 1474 reports of violations of workers’ rights in 2021. This included 64 arrests. 9 workers activists or workers were sentenced to 276 months in prison, 124 lashes and 23,000,000 tomans (5474 USD) in fines. 42 people were summoned to judicial and security organizations.
The Department also registered 7 cases of trials by judicial authorities, 10 cases of suicide, 7 cases of self-immolation, 9 cases of beatings, 3 cases of house searches, 2 cases of curfew imposition, and 2 cases of imprisonment.
During 2021, a total of 1247 months of overdue payment of salaries to workers was reported. 2073 workers were laid off or fired, 3332 people reported unemployment, 6404884 lacked work insurance, 5434 workers were waiting for work-related decisions. There were also a reported 68 factory closures.
In addition, 616 people have lost their lives in work-related accidents, and 5584 workers have been injured while at work. On a global scale amongst other counties, Iran ranks 102nd in work safety.
In a monthly comparison of workers’ rights violations in 2021, the highest number of violations happened May, with the lowest in December.
In 2021, there were at least 618 worker protests, with 9 reported instances of suppression in this regard, and 339 workers strike took place. The majority of these protests were regarding wages. Based on these reports the arrest of workers has increased by 53% compared to 2020.

CHILDREN’S RIGHTS

A total of 186 reports of violations of children’s rights in 2021 were registered by the Department of Statistics. However, it should be mentioned because of secrecy regarding these incidents, leading to underreporting, there is no accurate statistic in this field. Reports included at least 2117 cases of child abuse, 15 cases of rape and sexual abuse of children, 11 murders of children, 1 self-immolation, 54 cases of child suicide, 1 case of honor killing, 2 cases of acid attacks, 29 cases of sale and trafficking of children and 1448 cases of child abuse in economic activity. In addition, there were more than 9000 instances of child marriage.
3 million students are deprived of the right to education.
Many students in Iran have been denied access to education due to lack of access to e-learning facilities, as well as child marriages, poverty, cultural issues.
As mentioned in the section on the death penalty, at least 4 minors were executed for various offenses during 2021.
During the nation-wide protests, 25 children were arrested.
In monthly comparison in this category, the highest number of violations were reported in January and the lowest number in August.

WOMEN’S RIGHTS

The Department of Statistics Registered 90 reports of violations of women’s rights in 2021. At least 43 women reported physical and sexual abuse. There were also 24 cases of honor-killings, 8 self-immolations, 3 cases of acid attacks, and 4 cases where women’s rights activists were summoned to judicial and security organizations. In addition, there were 20,187 cases of domestic abuse against women and 13 murders.
Based on this report, 7 women have been detained for reasons related to women’s rights. At least 4 women’s rights activists were sentenced to 282 months in prison.
As the following bar graph illustrates, based on the number of reports per month, the highest number of reports were in November and the lowest in April and May.

PRISONERS’ RIGHTS

575 reports of violations of prisoner’s rights were registered in 2021. 26 of these reports were of physical assault of prisoners, 232 of deprivation of medical care, 136 of illegal transfer to solitary confinement, 131 of attempted hunger strikes, 77 of forced transportation or exile, 246 of threats against prisoners, 26 of banning prisoners from having visitors, 23 of torture, 20 of deaths by diseases. 5 arrestees were killed by prison authorities and 5 prisoners committed suicide. There were also 68 cases where prisoners lacked lawyers, 495 reports of prisoners being held in unsuitable circumstances, and 1 case of self-immolation.
In this category, there have also been 272 cases of prisoners kept in an unsure state regarding their sentence and 172 cases of keeping prisoner in conditions of indecision.
As the following bar graph illustrates, the highest number of reports of violations of prisoner’s rights occurred in June and September and lowest in November.

SECURITY FORCES’ VIOLENCE AND CITIZENS’ SAFETY

Death of civilians

This section is dedicated to the killing or injury of civilians by police or military institutions. In 2021, a total of 242 people were shot by military forces. 94 of the victims lost their life. This includes 23 kolbar, 31 fuel carriers and 40 civilians. 148 people were injured by military fire, including 81 kolbar, 51 civilians, and 16 fuel carriers.
Additionally, 28 kolbar were affected by climate and geographic factors such as freezing and falling from heights. 16 of these kolbar were injured and 12 were killed.

Victims of landmines and explosions

The landmines left from the war threaten the lives of civilians living in border cities each year. The Iranian government continues to manufacture and plant anti-personnel mines against international agreements, arguing that the use of these type of landmines is the only effective way to keep its vast borders safe.
Based on reports, at least 15 civilians in the past year have lost their lives to landmines in border areas, while 30 other civilians have been injured.

Floggings

The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) has explicitly banned the use of inhuman or degrading punishments such as flogging. However, based on the reports gathered in 2021, flogging sentences were carried out for at least 3 accused. These accused were sentenced to a total of 214 floggings.
It should be noted that the judiciary issued a total of 6982 flogging sentences in the past year.

Intervention in personal affairs of civilians

In 2021, at least 68 civilians were arrested for attending or hosting personal gatherings and parties. This number is based on 5 official reports in the country.
In 2021, at least 301 groups of civilians –mostly consisting of those who have lost money due to poor economic conditions, or those whose rights have been violated– have organized protests. These protests took place in 24 provinces. The provinces with the most protests were Tehran, Eastern Azerbaijan, Khuzestan, and Khorasan Razavi.
As the following bar graph illustrates, the highest number of reports related to violence from security forces and citizens’ safety occurred in January and the lowest in August.

SENTENCES

The judiciary of the Iranian government, including both in initial trial and appeal, issued 16531 months of imprisonment in 2021. These reports included 1348 months of imprisonment for ethnic minorities, 4174 months of imprisonment for religious minorities, 10140 months of imprisonment related to freedom of expression, 67 months of imprisonment related to union activity, 276 months of imprisonment for workers, 84 months of imprisonment related to cultural rights, 282 months of imprisonment in women’ rights category, and 160 months of imprisonment for students.
These statistics only include the court sentences that indicated detailed information or characteristics of the verdicts.
As the following bar graph illustrates, the highest number of reports was in January and the lowest in September.
Courts sentenced defendants to a total of 787,875,000 tomans (187,514.25 USD) in fines and 2900 lashes in 2021.
In 2021, the number of convictions of citizens and activists decreased by 44%. Moreover, the convictions in the following categories decreased: Religious Minorities by 4%, Ethnic Minorities by 25%, Freedom of Expression by 54%, Unions by 87%, and Cultural Rights by 67%. The following categories saw an increase in convictions: Workers by 50%, Women’s Rights by 56%, and Students by 62%.

ARRESTS

In 2021, security forces arrested 1676 individuals due to political or civil rights-related activities.
The statistical analysis exhibited 26 case of arrest in the trade union category, 445 arrests in the category of ethnic minorities, 57 arrests in the category of religious minorities, 1043 arrests in the category of freedom of expression, 25 arrests related to children’s rights, 3 arrests of students related to the right to education, 6 arrests in the field of cultural rights, and 64 arrests in the category of workers’ rights.
6 women were prosecuted for their activities, including the promotion of their desired lifestyle. 5 of these women were arrested for modeling, and 1 for activism in this area.
As the following bar graph illustrates, based on the number of reports per month, the highest number of reports in this category fell in November and the lowest in December.
In 2021, the number of arrests increased by 14% in total. Broken into categories, the number of arrests increased in the Ethnic Minority category by 55%, Culture decreased by 77%, Religious minorities decreased by 25%, Unions decreased by 44%, Students decreased by 50%, Workers’ Rights increased by 53%, and Freedom of Expression increased by 12%.

SEXUAL AND GENDER MINORITIES

The rights of sexual and gender minorities have previously been analyzed in the Annual Report of Human Rights Activists in Iran as a subset of other categories. The main reason for this was that the small handful of reports in the area did not allow analysis.
Creating an independent categorization, even with a small number of reports, is in fact an attempt to increase surveillance of this group.
The rights of sexual and gender minorities in the country are systematically violated in various ways. The criminalization of homosexuality and the non-recognition of transgender identity before gender reassignment procedures are two of many systematic violations that can seen codified into domestic law.
There are many obstacles in reporting on this topic, including open hatred against members of the community, cultural taboos, legal barriers, and the weakness of Iranian civil rights organizations in monitoring and reporting violations. The government’s policy in dealing with sexual minority issues in Iran exacerbates the vulnerability of these groups.
Of the few reports published in this area, it should be noted that HRANA reported 15 prisoners with uncertain judicial status accused of having homosexual relationships in Wards 2 and 10 of Rajai Shahr Prison in Karaj.
The detention of these citizens was directly related to having a homosexual relationship.
In some cases, security and law enforcement agencies acknowledge the detention and harassment of members of this community. For example, in June of this year, Reza Molouki, head of the FATA police in the east of Tehran Province announced the identification and arrest of a citizen on charges of “corruption on earth”, calling his relationship with a homosexual illegitimate.
Trans citizens face legal problems in addition to cultural issues in the process of changing their identity documents or seeking exemption from conscription. In another report, a citizen living in Tehran, after obtaining a military exemption due to his gender identity, lost his employment and was unable to renew his license as an expert of the Food and Drug Administration.
In 2019, the World Health Organization updated its guidelines on disorders related to sexuality and gender identity in the ICD-11. In doing so, transgender identity was no longer recognized as a “disorder” by the WHO.

 

This is the brief version and the full report is available for download in PDF format.

 

_________________________

For further inquiries please contact Skylar Thompson, Senior Advocacy Coordinator Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) at [email protected]