- Ahmed Shaheed, UN, UNHCHR, State Department, EU, Navi Pillay, Ban Ki-Moon, European Parliament
AUGUST 22, 2016: Reporters Without Borders Reports that an appeal court in the city of Saveh, in central Iran, has upheld a lower court’s decision that the Saveh-based journalist and blogger Mohammad Reza Fathi should be flogged because of his posts about city officials.
Under the original ruling handed down on 13 April, Fathi was sentenced to 444 lashes (to be administered in six sessions of 74 lashes) on charges of defamation and publishing false information. In its 12 July ruling, the appeal court confirmed the decision to flog Fathi but modified the sentence. It sentenced him to three sessions of 77 lashes for defamation and three sessions of 76 lashes for publishing false information – for an increased total of 459 lashes.
But the appeal court added that only the second sentence (three sessions of 76 lashes) will be administered in accordance with article 134 of the new Islamic penal code (as amended in 2013), which says that when a defendant is given more than one sentence on criminal charges, only the sentence corresponding to the gravest charge is implemented.
WHEREAS: Iranian journalist Mohammad Reza Fathi has received a brutal flogging sentence solely for the peaceful pursuit of his journalistic profession and posts critical of local authorities, and thus this sentence is ILLEGAL under Articles 18 and 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (to which Iran is a signatory) as well as Article 24 of the Iranian Constitution;
AND WHEREAS: Flogging is a flagrantly brutal and degrading form of torture which is thus ILLEGAL under Article 7 of the above-mentioned International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which states: "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment";
THEREFORE: We, the undersigned, demand that the international community act urgently to intercede on behalf of Mr. Fathi and demand that the Islamic Republic of Iran honor its human rights commitments under both international law and in accordance with its own constitution by IMMEDIATELY and UNCONDTIONALLY reversing the illegal flogging sentence and dropping all charges related to Mr. Fathi's journalistic work
The Halt Flogging of Iranian Journalist Mohammad Reza Fathi petition to Ahmed Shaheed, UN, UNHCHR, State Department, EU, Navi Pillay, Ban Ki-Moon, European Parliament was written by John S. Burke and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.