We have been shocked by the reports that Seyyed Alireza Avaei (a.k.a Avaee), who is currently Minister of “Justice” in the cabinet of President Rouhani, is scheduled to speak before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva tomorrow 27 February 2018.
Alireza Avaei is currently on EU’s and Switzerland’s black lists for serious human rights violations. The European Union added him to its sanctions lists in October 2011, stressing that “As President of the Tehran Judiciary he has been responsible for human rights violations, arbitrary arrests, denials of prisoners’ rights and an increase in executions.”
Avaei was previously the Prosecutor-General and member of the “Death Commission” in Khuzestan province, south of Iran. He issued many death sentences during the 1988 massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in Iran who were mostly from the opposition PMOI/MEK. This was a crime against humanity.
At a civil society hearing in Geneva in February 2018, survivors of the 1988 executions and international human rights experts testified and Avaei’s name was repeatedly brought up over his active role in the massacre.
Speaking from Brussels on Monday, MEP Gérard Deprez, Chair of the Friends of a Free Iran group in the European parliament stressed: “Inviting Alireza Avaie to speak at the UN Human Rights Council is a total disgrace and a mockery of our democratic values. It is an insult to the many victims of human rights violations in Iran. Avaie should instead be brought before an International tribunal to answer for the crimes that he has been involved with in the past three decades.”
Office of Gérard Deprez MEP
Chair, Friends of a Free Iran
Friends of a Free Iran (FoFI) is an informal group in the European Parliament which was formed in 2003 and has enjoyed the support of 300 MEPs from various political groups
Chair: Gérard DEPREZ (ALDE)
Vice-Chairs: Tunne KELAM (EPP), Louis MICHEL (ALDE), Eduard KUKAN (EPP), Jan ZAHRADIL (ECR), José BOVÉ (Greens), Marian HARKIN (ALDE)
Members of the Board: Jarosław WAŁĘSA (EPP), Emma McCLARKIN (ECR), Beatriz Becerra (ALDE), Jude KIRTONDARLING (S&D), Richard ASHWORTH (ECR), Stanislav POLČÁK (EPP), Svetoslav MALINOV (EPP), Julie WARD (S&D), Rina Ronja KARI (GUE/NGL), Petri SARVAMAA (EPP),Tadeusz ZWIEFKA (EPP)