Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions A/HRC/29/37/Add.5
para 39
Full recommendation:
The Special Rapporteur thanks the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for its response
to this communication. In its response, the Government indicated that Mr. Ali Chibshat and Mr.
Seyyed Khaled Mousavi were arrested on charge of conducting terrorist acts. According to the
information provided by the Government, their file was considered in a Court in the city of
Ahvaz and the verdict was appealed. The appeal Court reconsidered the case and reaffirmed the
verdict. In interpreting article 6(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,
the United Nations Human Rights Committee has consistently rejected the imposition of a death
sentence for offences that do not result in the loss of life, finding that only cases involving
murder meet the threshold of the most serious crimes provision. The Special Rapporteur urges
the Iranian authorities to bring its domestic legislation into conformity with the most serious
crimes provision under international law, and refrain from any further death sentence or
execution in violation of these standards.
Assessment using Impact Iran human rights indicators 1
In its latest General Comment on Article 6, the Human Rights Committee explicitly stipulated that
the term “the most serious crimes” must “be read restrictively and appertain only to crimes of
extreme gravity, involving intentional killing. Crimes not resulting directly and intentionally in
death […], although serious in nature, can never serve as the basis, within the framework of Article
6, for the imposition of the death penalty. In the same vein, a limited degree of involvement or of
complicity in the commission of even the most serious crimes, […], cannot justify the imposition
of the death penalty.”2
The Islamic Republic of Iran continues to apply the death penalty to a wide range of offences
that do not meet the threshold of “most serious crimes”, in other words, crimes that do not
involve intentional killing, in contravention with article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil
and Political Rights. 3 For example, the death penalty may be applied to some cases of adultery, 4
certain cases of consensual same-sex intercourse between men 5, or for vaguely defined offences
1 CCPR.6.2.S.1

CCPR.6.2.P.1
CCPR.6.2.O.3
2 UN Human Rights Committee (HRC), General comment no. 36, Article 6 (Right to Life), 3 September 2019, CCPR/C/GC/35,
available at: https://www.refworld.org/docid/5e5e75e04.html
3 UN Human Rights Committee (HRC), General comment no. 36, Article 6 (Right to Life), 3 September 2019, CCPR/C/GC/35,
available at: https://www.refworld.org/docid/5e5e75e04.html
4
Islamic Penal Code (2013), Articles 136 and 225, English translation, Iran Human Rights Documentation Center,
https://iranhrdc.org/english-translation-of-books-i-ii-of-the-new-islamic-penal-code/
5 Islamic Penal Code (2013), Article 235, English translation, Iran Human Rights Documentation Center,
https://iranhrdc.org/english-translation-of-books-i-ii-of-the-new-islamic-penal-code/

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