Iran: Over 760,000 people sign petition calling for UN to adopt investigation mechanism into 'crimes' against protesters

Iran: Over 760,000 people sign petition calling for UN to adopt investigation mechanism into 'crimes' against protesters
Hundreds of thousands of people have signed a petition calling for the UN to create an independent mechanism to investigate crimes against protesters in Iran and hold authorities accountable, said Amnesty International on Thursday.
2 min read
03 November, 2022
Iranians continue to take to the streets despite a brutal crackdown by authorities who vowed to put an end to the demonstrations [Getty]

More than 760,000 people worldwide have signed a petition calling for an independent UN mechanism to be established and conduct investigations into alleged crimes committed by Iranian authorities, according to Amnesty International on Thursday. 

The petition, named 'End the protest bloodshed in Iran', accuses Iran of using live ammunition and tear gas against peaceful protesters, who have taken to the streets for several weeks following the death in custody of Mahsa Amini. 

It calls on states within the UN Human Rights Council to end the ongoing "crisis of impunity in Iran" which has emboldened authorities to kill over 200 protesters, at least 30 of whom were children, according to Amnesty. 

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"The people of Iran continue to courageously protest and call for the end of widespread repression and the establishment of a political system that respects equality and upholds human rights," said Heba Morayef, Amnesty International’s Director for the Middle East and North Africa. 

"Will member states of the UN Human Rights Council respond to the cries of people in Iran and activists across the globe to urgently establish an international mechanism on crimes committed by the Iranian authorities?" she added. 

Amnesty said a special session on Iran was needed to establish a means to hold authorities accountable for their most serious crimes against protesters under international law and human rights violations.

The rights body has been publicly calling for urgent UN action since 17 October alongside 42 other organisations.  

This week, the US and Albania organised an informal meeting at the UN to discuss the protests. Iran urged countries not to attend, saying it would be "counterproductive to the promotion of human rights". 

Iranian-born actress and activist Nazanin Boniadi was present, where she "conveyed people’s demands for immediate action". 

US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield said Washington would work with member states to remove Iran from the UN Commission on the Status of Women and would raise the issue at every UN forum.

The widespread protests in Iran were sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in September. The young woman was allegedly beaten to death by Iran's so-called morality police. Demands for accountability over her death have morphed into a wider challenge against authorities.