Baku, Azerbaijan, March 12
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
The U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is the most powerless U.N. secretary-general Compared to his predecessors, said Iranian conservative politician, Akbar Velayati. while commenting on Ban`s criticism about human rights` condition in Iran.
Velayati, a senior advisor on international affairs to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that Ban Ki-moon is completely controlled by the U.S., the country's ISNA news agency reported on March 12.
"Mr. Ban Ki-Moon repeats the U.S. officials` statements via the UN tribune," he added.
Ban Ki-moon said on March 11 that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has failed to fulfill campaign promises to allow greater freedom of expression and there has been a sharp rise in executions since his election, Reuters reported.
In a report to the U.N. Human Rights Council, Ban Ki-moon highlighted the prevalent use of capital punishment in Iran and called for the release of political prisoners including house-arrested opposition leaders Mehdi Karoubi and Mirhossein Mousavi as well as activists, lawyers and journalists. Karroubi and Mousavi have been under house arrest since 2011 due to protests against the 2009 disputed presidential election.
In 2009, after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was elected president of Iran for the second straight term, the opposition leaders protested the decision, which later resulted in massive protests across Iran, in particular in Tehran. Many people were arrested and were imprisoned.
On Feb. 11, Iran's Prosecutor General Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei said that the opposition leaders will remain under house arrest until they "repent."
"Some people are pointlessly trying to lift the house arrests, but their efforts will not lead to any result," the prosecutor underlined.
The U.N. special rapporteur on Iran, Ahmed Shaheed, a former Maldives foreign minister, is to issue his own report in the coming days. The Geneva forum is expected to renew his mandate for a year before its current session ends on March 28.