Article 502 of Iran’s Criminal Code of Procedure (2015) provides that “whenever the convicted individual suffers from physical or mental illnesses and the implementation of the sentence would exacerbate the illness or delay the recovery, the Judge Overseeing Implementation of Sentences shall, after obtaining the opinion of the Legal Medicine Organization of Iran, postpone the implementation until the time of the recovery”. The Code further adds that, if there is no prospect of recovery and the judge is satisfied that the convicted person is unfit to serve the sentence, the judge can refer the case to the court that originally issued the sentence to issue an alternative sentence.6 Such provision is not in full compliance with international standards, notably Rule 27(c) of the Mandela Rules which states: “Clinical decisions may only be taken by the responsible health-care professionals and may not be overruled or ignored by non-medical prison staff”.7 Iran’s Prisons regulations detail provisions for the supervision and periodic inspection of detention centres and assign these responsibilities to relevant authorities. In its 2019 National Report to the Universal Periodic Review, the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran reported that the Citizenship Rights Watch Board conducts periodic inspections within prisons and detention centers. According to the Government, the body has “received and handled 3,275 complaints and reports, through the complaint system, in relation with civil rights violations. Between 2015 and 2018, a number of 28,504 inspections were carried out to prosecutors' offices, prisons and detention centers.”8 There is no readily available information regarding the outcome of such inspections or whether they led to the improvements of detention conditions. Further, institutions and officials responsible to conducting inspections in detention centres reportedly lack independence, as they may be members of the prisons’ administration or the Judiciary.9 Reports received by OHCHR indicate that detainees are regularly kept in poor conditions in Iranian prisons, notably due to overcrowding and serious lack of basic hygiene, adequate food, water and denial of access to medical care. The Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran received numerous reports of the abusive use of torture to extract confessions, use of solitary confinement, and conditional access to medical treatments upon confession.10 A report published by the Abdorrahman Boroumand Center in partnership with the Human Rights Activists News Agency found that conditions of detentions have further deteriorated since the COVID-19 pandemic started. Prisons’ overcrowding facilitated the proliferation of COVID-19 6 Amnesty International, The Mandela Rules, Rule 27(2), available at 8 National Report, UPR 2019, Islamic Republic of Iran, 9 HRANA < >; UN <> ; HRW < > 10 Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, January 2020, Islamic_Republic_of_IranA4361.pdf 7 2

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