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UN Must Take Immediate Action to Respond to Human Rights Violations against Children in Iran: Save the Children

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (Nov. 22, 2022)—Save the Children calls on the UN Human Rights Council meeting later this week to firmly condemn and respond to reports of killing, maiming, and detention of hundreds of children in Iran and to establish an independent investigative mechanism.

Such a mechanism must be adequately equipped and resourced to investigate the full breadth of violations against children.

The UN should also use all its power to demand the immediate release of hundreds of children detained during protests in Iran in recent weeks when it holds an urgent special session later this week.

According to the UN, more than 40 children are reported to have been killed and between 500-1,000 children are believed to be among more than 14,000 people detained, some threatened with execution, after deadly crackdowns on protesters in Iran.

The protests began after the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Jina Amini on September 16 who died in police custody.

Save the Children International’s CEO Inger Ashing said it was imperative to take action immediately to prevent and stop all human rights violations against children, including the release of hundreds of children currently being held in detention.

“Children should never be targeted for exercising their rights to freedom of expression and to peaceful assembly. They should not be subjected to this kind of violence and fear or be locked up away from their families for just simply speaking up. This violence must stop immediately and children must be released from detention.

“Iran ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child that states that the arrest, detention or imprisonment of children shall be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time. It also states that children must also be treated with respect and care, and be able to keep in contact with their family. This is one of the core UN human rights treaties and must be upheld.”

The Human Rights Council is holding a special session on Thursday, November 24 to address “the deteriorating human rights situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran, especially with respect to women and children” at the request of Council members.

Save the Children is the world’s largest independent child rights organization, reaching tens of millions of children annually in over 100 countries through its work to save and improve children’s lives. Securing children's rights is the foundation of our work. The organization is not active in Iran.

Save the Children has made a 2030 commitment to ensure that violence against children is no longer tolerated and that the most vulnerable children around the world are protected. This includes working with governments to develop and implement protective policies for children as well as listening to and involving them in decision-making.



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