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Iran

Barometer

Retentionist
Country status
+
Sentenced
582+
Execution(s)
+
Conviction(s)
Figures for 2022. + : Authorities do not communicate exact numbers, estimated at several hundreds.

Urgent context in the escalation of executions in Iran

Press release
March 2024
The 16th Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran, published jointly by Iran Human…

On 16 September 2022, a 22-year-old Iranian woman named Mahsa Amini died in a Tehran hospital. Three days before, she had been arrested by the Iranian morality police for “wearing inappropriate clothing” and severely beaten, according to several witnesses present at the arrest. Born in the Iranian province of Kurdistan, she was on holiday in Tehran at the time of her arrest and was about to pursue university studies in the province of West Azerbaijan. As soon as her death was announced, demonstrations against the regime took place and continued for the following weeks, not only in Iranian Kurdistan, but also in Tehran and Mashhad and then throughout the country. On 30 September, more than 66 people were killed in Zahedan by the security forces who fired live ammunition to suppress a demonstration. Several children were hit. This day has since been considered as “Bloody Friday” by the Iranians.

On 12 November 2022, a court in Tehran handed down the first death sentence to a man for taking part in the protests.

ECPM was among the first to warn of the risk of escalation in the use of the death penalty. 2022 was already marked by a very significant increase in the number of executions. Between 1 January 2022 and November 2022, Iran had already executed at least 450 people (333 by 2021).

The death penalty in Iran – 2023

ECPM has been working with the iranian civil society since 2012

ECPM has a particular focus on Iran, the country that holds the record for the highest number of executions relative to its population. Since 2012, ECPM has been working closely with local NGOs to highlight discrimination linked to the use of the death penalty and to advocate for improvements in respect for human rights. Each year, a report on the death penalty in Iran is published and widely disseminated. It provides an assessment and analysis of the evolution of the situation in this country, where it is particularly difficult to obtain information from the authorities. As a reliable information and advocacy tool, the report has contributed over the years to positive developments in Iran: although executions continue unabated, stoning was, for example, suspended in 2011, and the death penalty was abolished for the majority of drug-related offences in 2017.

By supporting the work of civil society (diaspora networks and actors) and conducting advocacy in regional and international bodies, ECPM encourages Iran to gradually move towards greater respect for human rights and therefore abolition: for example, through greater transparency, compliance with international minimum standards on the use of the death penalty, reducing its scope of application, or limiting its use to the most serious crimes.

The encouraging reforms seen in recent years are creating a momentum that can be harnessed to bring about major changes in the use of the death penalty in Iran and the legal and procedural framework underpinning it. This is the objective of Impact Iran, a network uniting ECPM and sixteen other NGOs: by conducting essential advocacy for the renewal of the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on Iran (drafting letters, co-signing letters, holding specific meetings with diplomatic missions and members of the OHCHR), as well as for the inclusion of recommendations on the death penalty in the Special Rapporteur’s annual report, the network brings the abolitionist cause to the country, but also to the European Parliament and the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC).

The death penalty situation in Iran remains alarming with a significant rise in executions in 2021 (+25%) and an increasing number of Iranian women being executed. Another disturbing finding documented in our latest report: the number of drug-related executions has increased dramatically, with a total of 126 people executed over the year, an increase of approximately 100 compared to the previous year.

At the 46th session of the Human Rights Council, Taimoor Aliassi, on behalf of ECPM and Kurdistan Human Rights-Geneva, Iran Human Rights and Abdorrahman Boroumand Center, alerted the Council to the alarming use of the death penalty in Iran (March 2021)

All reports

Overview of the death penalty
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran in 2023
Mar 2024
Overview of the death penalty
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2022
Apr 2023
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2021
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention, Overview of the death penalty
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2020
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2019
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2018
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2017
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2016
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2014
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2013
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2012
Oct 2022
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2011
Oct 2022
Human Rights Protection Mechanisms
Iran 34th session of the working group on the UPR death penalty
Sep 2022
Abolition process
The process of abolishing the death penalty in member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation
Oct 2020
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2015
Oct 2015
Conditions of detention
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran 2014
Jan 2015

All tools

The death penalty in Iran – 2023
La peine de mort en Iran – 2023
The death penalty in law and in practice in Iran
Infographics – the death penalty in Iran (2022)
Cahiers de l’abolition #2 : On the death penalty in Iran

All news

In the field
Raising Awareness Among Young People About the Universal Abolition of the Death Penalty: Its Application in Iran and Against LGBTQIA+ People
13 June 2024
Du 13 au 31 mai derniers, ECPM, accompagnée d’Asal Asabian, a rencontré près de 200 jeunes collégien·nes et lycéen·nes d’Île-de-France. Asal Abasian est un·e journaliste queer iranien·ne, lauréate de l'initiative Marianne 2021, militant·e féministe et des droits des personnes LGBTQIA+. En partageant son histoire poignante et ses combats, iel a…
Advocacy
Asal Abasian’s fight: “Queer identity, for me, signifies a struggle”
12 June 2024
Asal Abasian, an Iranian journalist and queer feminist activist, was forced into exile due to theirs fight for human rights. Compelled to leave theirs country, Asal found refuge in Paris, where they work to give a voice to marginalized communities, especially LGBTQIA+ individuals and women. In this interview, Asal reveals…
Plaidoyer
Call for joint action to stop drug-related executions in Iran
10 April 2024
10 April 2024 - The death penalty or state murder is the Islamic Republic’s most important tool for instilling societal fear to maintain power. Executions in Iran increased dramatically following the “Woman, Life, Freedom” uprising, with at least 834 people executed in 2023.
Advocacy
Review of the Iran advocacy during the 55th session of the Human Rights Council
19 March 2024
Side event following the release of the Iran report on the death penalty On March 14, 2024, ECPM, Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO), Impact Iran, and Baluchistan Human Rights Group organised a side event during the session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva. More than 60 participants, including representatives from…
Plaidoyer, Uncategorized
Joint letter signed by 43 NGOs calling for the renewal of the mandates of the SR and FFM on Iran
18 March 2024
In this joint appeal to the United Nations Human Rights Council member states, various Iranian and international human rights organizations call for the renewal of the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on Iran and the extension of the mandate of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission. These mandates are crucial…
Press release
Death penalty in Iran: An appalling number of executions in 2023
04 March 2024
The 16th Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran, published jointly by Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO) and ECPM (Together against the death penalty), is alarming: there has been an explosive rise in the number of executions in 2023. At least 834 people were executed, an increase of 43% compared…
Press release
Narges Mohammadi is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
06 October 2023
As a militant and passionate advocate for the Iranian resistance, Narges Mohammadi has devoted her life to defending human rights in her country. She has never stopped her struggle, even from the prison cells where she has been regularly incarcerated since 1998.
Advocacy, Event
ECPM heads to the Middle East for the Fourth Regional Congress on the Death Penalty
02 May 2023
After Morocco (2012), Malaysia (2015) and Abidjan (2018), ECPM, Penal Reform International, Adaleh Center for Human Rights Studies teams and their partners are now heading to the Middle East to organize the fourth regional congress on the death penalty that will take place on July 11 and 12, 2023. An…
Press release, Publication
Death penalty in Iran: Highest number of executions since 2015
13 April 2023
The 15th Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran, jointly produced by Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO) and Ensemble Contre la Peine de Mort (ECPM), is enlightening: executions continued to rise in 2022. At least 582 prisoners sentenced to death were executed, an increase of 75% compared to 2021. The…
Taïmoor Aliassi témoigne devant une classe de quatrièmes
Sur le terrain, Témoignage
Special school interventions on the situation in Iran: the urgent need to educate young people on the abolition of the death penalty
29 March 2023
At the beginning of March, ECPM visited schools in the Ile de France region for a special school curriculum on Iran. On this occasion, Shole Pakravan and Taimoor Aliassi, Iranian abolitionist activists, accompanied our teams to testify on / to share their inspiring stories. Their mission? To bring the voice…
Événement
ECPM and its partners at the UN to alert on the use of the death penalty in Iran
28 March 2023
On 20 March, ECPM and several of its partners were at the Palais des Nations in Geneva for the Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran. ECPM co-signed two oral interventions on the death penalty in Iran, one with Iran Human Rights and…
Testimony
ECPM partner of the film Seven Winters in Tehran
06 March 2023
As part of there work in Iran and a special series of school interventions concerning the wave of executions in the country, ECPM associates with Nour Films for the cinema release of the documentary 7 winters in Tehran. ECPM receives Shole Paravan, mother of Reyhaneh Jabarri, executed in 2014. She…
Advocacy
10 Key points to understand the hidden side of the death penalty in Iran
27 February 2023
Since the beginning of the uprising, triggered by the death in custody of Mahsa Amini on 16 September 2022, more than 300 people, including at least 41 minors, have lost their lives. Thousands of people have reportedly been arrested. Although it is difficult to obtain precise figures, at least 100…
Advocacy
Escalation of the executions in Iran : ECPM stands by its Iranian partners
18 January 2023
On 16 September 2022, 22-year-old Iranian woman Mahsa Amini died in a Tehran hospital. Three days before, she had been arrested by the Iranian morality police for "wearing inappropriate clothing" and severely beaten, according to several witnesses who were present during the arrest. Given the scale of the protests, ECPM…
Advocacy, Event, In the field
Meet the laureates of the 8th World Congress against the death penalty
23 November 2022
The 8th World Congress Against the Death Penalty was also an opportunity to highlight civil society actors working towards universal abolition. ECPM, the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty and their partners highlighted the exceptional work of organizations particularly invested in the different spheres of the abolitionist struggle such as:…
Uncategorized
Iranian lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh awarded the Robert-Badinter Prize
18 November 2022
Iranian lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, a long-time human rights activist in her country, is the first recipient of the Robert-Badinter Prize, the Grand Prize of the public, awarded today in Berlin, at the conclusion of the 8th World Congress against the Death Penalty, which brought together the world abolitionist community since…
Advocacy, Editorial / opinion page
Impact Iran applauds Germany’s initiative for a Special Session on human rights in Iran and calls for the swift establishment of an investigative accountability body
03 November 2022
Impact Iran applauds the German Government’s recent announcement of its decision to support a Special Session of the UN Human Rights Council on the grave human rights situation in Iran, with a view to "establish[ing] a UN mechanism" to ensure that "evidence can be collected and documented."
Editorial / opinion page
Édito : De la Russie à l’Iran… Les leçons à retenir
05 March 2022
Editorial / opinion page
ECPM calls on sports organisations to mobilize against the death penalty
16 February 2022
report 2020 Iran
Uncategorized
Publication of the 13th Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran
30 March 2021
La situation de la peine de mort en Iran est alarmante : avec au moins 267 exécutions en 2020, l’Iran est l’État qui exécute le plus au monde par rapport à sa population. Le 13e Rapport annuel sur la peine de mort en Iran, réalisé par Iran Human Rights (IHR) et ECPM,…
Editorial / opinion page
Joint intervention at the UN Human Rights Council on the alarming use of the death penalty in Iran
09 March 2021
Iran is one of the world’s biggest executioners. In 2020, over 230 executions were reported. An estimated 3,000 people on death row, including 85 minors, are currently held in Iranian prisons. On the occasion of the 46th session of the Human Rights Council, Taimoor Aliassi, on behalf of ECPM and…
Editorial / opinion page
Urgent action to release Kurdish activists and others arbitrarily detained in Iran
03 February 2021
We, the undersigned 36 civil society and human rights organizations, call for the urgent attention of the international community to an ongoing wave of arbitrary arrests, incommunicado detention, and enforced disappearances by the Iranian authorities, targeting scores of people from Iran’s disadvantaged Kurdish minority in the provinces of Alborz, Kermanshah,…
cover publication
Publication
The process of abolishing the death penalty in member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)
26 November 2020
As the 47th session of the Council of Foreign Ministers organised by the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is being held in Niamey, Niger, on 27 and 28 November 2020, ECPM and Nael Georges publish the study The process of abolishing the death penalty in member states of the Organisation…
Publication
Release of the 12th Annual Report on the death penalty in Iran
31 March 2020
The figure is alarming and echoes the concerns of human rights defenders: at least 280 people were executed last year in Iran, which remains the country with the highest death penalty in the world after China. The 12th annual report on the death penalty in Iran, carried out by Iran…
group picture of a side event in Iran
Event, In the field
The main observers of the death penalty in Iran gathered at the UN
13 September 2019
During its review by the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) working group in 2014, Iran received the second highest number of recommendations on the death penalty. Five years later, it is still on the podium of the countries condemning to death and executing the most in the world. In order to…
Picture of Raphael and Mahmood
Publication
Annual report on the death penalty in Iran: key issues and figures
26 April 2019
The 11th Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran, prepared by Iran Human Rights (IHR) with the support of ECPM, provides an assessment and analysis of trends in the death penalty in 2018 in the Islamic Republic of Iran, which has the highest number of executions per year after…