UN starts probing rights violations in Iran through diaspora in Europe
Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov. 29 / Trend S. Isayev/
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ahmed Shaheed, will launch a fact-finding mission to three European countries which host Iranian diaspora. Mr. Shaheed will visit France, Germany and Belgium from Nov. 30 - Dec. 8, to gather information about alleged human rights violations in Iran, according to UN Human Rights' press release.
Since his appointment in August 2011, the independent expert has made official requests to the Islamic Republic of Iran for a country visit, without obtaining a positive response from the authorities. He has also encouraged the Government to extend its full cooperation with his mandate as required by the UN Human Rights Council.
"I will continue to make every possible effort to get the Iranian authorities' support," Shaheed said.
"A country visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran would have allowed me to gain better understanding of the situation in the country, explore possible areas of cooperation, offer constructive dialogue with the authorities and produce report that reflect the views of all parties concerned, not the least the views of the Government", he added.
"However, in my first mission as Special Rapporteur on Iran, I will now study wide range of human rights issues by meeting activists within Iranian diaspora, alleged victims of human rights violations, intergovernmental and civil society organizations," he explained. "The information collected in France, Germany and Belgium will help shape my report to the Human Rights Council in March 2012."
The human rights expert will hold a press conference on Thursday 8 December 2011 at 10:30 at the United Nations Regional Information Centre (UNRIC) office in Brussels.