Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran
A/HRC/43/61 para 68(e)
Full recommendation:
The Special Rapporteur recommends that the Government, the judiciary and the parliament:
Ensure that prisoners and detainees are protected from all forms of torture and ill-treatment and
that confessions obtained through torture or ill- treatment are never admitted as evidence
against the accused.
Assessment using Impact Iran human rights indicators1
A. The Special Rapporteur recommends that the Government, the judiciary and
parliament: ensure that prisoners and detainees are protected from all forms of
torture and other ill-treatment.
Article 38 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran only prohibits torture and other illtreatment when it is “used to extract an admission of guilt or to obtain information”.2
Additionally, Article 39 prohibits all affronts to the dignity of detained or imprisoned persons.
Similarly, Article 578 of the Islamic Penal Code asserts “any civil servant or judicial or nonjudicial agent who corporally mistreats and abuses an accused person in order to force him to
confess shall be sentenced […]”.3 Such provision is reiterated under Article 60 of the Code of
Criminal Procedure. Article 169 of the Prison Regulations prohibits “corporal punishment of the
accused or convicts, and imposing violent, excruciating or humiliating punishments, in all penal
institutions and prisons” and punishments are provided under Article 587 of the Islamic Penal
Code. 4 While Iranian law conditionally prohibits torture and certain abusive conduct during
interrogations, it does not provide a definition of torture per se. Torture and other ill-treatment
inflicted on an individual for other purposes than extracting confessions and/or information is
not, therefore, explicitly prohibited.
The prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment is a jus cogens norm under international law
and cannot be restricted in any circumstances,5 including by conflicting domestic laws.

1

CCPR.7.1.S.1
CCPR.7.1.P.1
CCPR.7.1.O.1; CCPR.7.1.O.2
2
Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran English translation
http://www.iranchamber.com/government/laws/constitution_ch03.php
3
Islamic Penal Code of the Islamic Republic of Iran (2013), English translation, Iran Human Rights Documentation Center,
https://iranhrdc.org/islamic-penal-code-of-the-islamic-republic-of-iran-book-five/
4
Islamic Penal Code of the Islamic Republic of Iran (2013), English translation, Iran Human Rights Documentation Center,
https://iranhrdc.org/islamic-penal-code-of-the-islamic-republic-of-iran-book-five/
5
CCPR General Comment No. 20: Article 7, 10 March 1992, https://www.refworld.org/docid/453883fb0.html

1

Select target paragraph3