HRC55 Side Event Focuses on Persecution of Gender, Ethnicity, and Religion in Iran

GENEVA- On March 18,2024, Skylar Thompson, Director of Global Advocacy and Accountability, contributed to a pivotal side event during the Human Rights Council 55th Session, focusing on the escalating persecution in Iran on the grounds of gender, ethnicity, and religion.

Thompson participated alongside distinguished chair of the FFMI Sara Hossain,who earlier in the day presented the findings to the Human Rights Council. During the side event, she highlighted the disproportionate discriminations towards minorities, particular in regard to the violence shown during the protest. Further, she also addressed the extreme violence towards women and girls that amounted to crimes against humanity of murder, torture, and persecution on the grounds of gender intersecting with the persecution of minorities.

Other panelists included Taimoor Alliassi, Monireh Shiran, Raphaël Chenuil-Hazan and, Nushin Sarkarati.

The session provided a platform to address the worsening human rights situation in the country, highlighting the plight of marginalized groups, particularly women, minorities, and LGBTI individuals. Further, the panel discussed the findings by the FFMI, the historically high number of executions, and pathways to accountability through international mechanisms.

Thompson spoke about acts committed notably against women and girls for non-compliance with mandatory hijab laws or for opposing established gender norms and discriminatory policies which are deeply embedded into the domestic judicial system. She emphasized the urgent need to continue to document extensively the ongoing crimes occurring in Iran, stressing that these events are not isolated incidents but rather systematic oppression targeting specific groups of individuals on the basis of their membership in those groups.. She highlighted the treatment during the protests, but also the long-standing persecution endured by women, minorities, and LGBTI individuals within Iran, stating, “All these acts surrounding the protests have been happening for decades. Iran has persecuted women, they have persecuted minorities, and they have persecuted LGBTI individuals.” Thompson’s call to action included renewing mandates for fact-finding missions and special rapporteurs, underscoring the imperative for international intervention to address the egregious human rights violations perpetrated in Iran.

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