Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran
A/HRC/28/70 para 97
Full recommendation:
The Special Rapporteur encourages the Government to consider ending its satellite
jamming, given its impact on the health of its citizens and on the right to access to
information. He also calls for the enhancement of policies that govern gender confirmation
surgeries for transgender individuals to ensure the protection of the right to health of those
who may consider such procedures.
Assessment drafted using Impact Iran’s human rights indicators1
A. Encourages the Government to consider ending its satellite jamming
The government of Iran has been jamming both foreign and domestic satellite signals since 2003.
This measure is implemented with the aim of preventing access to independent news and
unbiased information.2 The practice of satellite jamming was highly prevalent during the 2009
protests around the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. According to reports one of
the techniques used by the government to jam satellites involves surface level jamming using
trucks that roam residential neighborhoods, which is associated with a high health risk. Citizens
of Shiraz in Fars staged a protest in 2017, calling attention to their exposure to harmful jamming
signals and blaming the government for a number of health issues ranging from headaches to
cancer. In the same year, Shiraz medical authorities estimated that local satellite jamming could
cause up to 24.000 cases of cancer in the region in the next few years.3
B. Enhancement of policies that govern gender confirmation surgeries for
transgender individuals to ensure the protection of the right to health
Human right organizations have reported on Iranian authorities’ recurring practices regarding the
use of a range of coercive medical procedures designed for LGBTI individuals of any age. These
procedures include conversion or reparative therapies, hormone treatments and sex reassignment
and sterilization surgeries.4 A fatwa by the then Supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini in 1986
established the legal framework for diagnosing Trans people with what is called “Gender
Identity Disorder.” Though being Trans is not a crime in Iran, Trans people are forced to choose
between being diagnosed with Gender Identity Disorder (GID), which leads to coerced gender
1

CCPR.25.1.S.3; CCPR.26.1.P.1; CCPR.26.1.O.1; ESCR.12.2.4.S.1; ESCR.12.2.4.P.1; ESCR.12.2.3.P.4; ESCR.12.2.4.O.1
https://en.radiofarda.com/a/iran-staellite-jamming-health/29364815.html
3
https://spacewatch.global/2017/04/iranian-satellite-jamming-shiraz-cause-24000-cancer-cases-coming-years/
4
6RANG. Submission to the UN Independent Expert on Protection Against Violence and Discrimination Based on Sexual
Orientation and Gender Identity, March 2019.
2

1

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