TEHRAN (Iran News) – Iran’s top rights official has lambasted the UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran for hailing the conviction of an Iranian citizen by a Swedish court.
In a statement, Kazem Gharibabadi, the deputy chief of the Iranian judiciary and secretary of the High Council for Human Rights, termed Javid Rehman’s remarks “extremely disappointing”.
“It is extremely disappointing that Javid Rehman has chosen to publicly support arbitrary detention and sham trial of an Iranian citizen instead of calling out the Swedish authorities and holding them to account for the gross violations of fundamental human rights of the victim,” he said.
In his statement earlier on Friday, Rehman hailed the conviction of Hamid Nouri, a former Iranian judiciary official who was sentenced to life by a Swedish court on Thursday over charges of participating in the execution of jailed dissidents in the late 1980s.
Nouri, who was arrested upon arrival at the Stockholm Airport in November 2019, has been held in solitary confinement for over two years.
He has vehemently rejected allegations leveled against him at the behest of the MEK terrorist group.
“The process and verdict in Sweden constitute a landmark and important leap forward in the pursuit of truth and justice for a dark chapter in Iranian history. It is also a clear signal that denial, despite substantive evidence, and impunity can no longer be tolerated,” Rehman said.
“I urge other States to take on similar investigation and prosecution of serious human rights violations in Iran using principles of universal jurisdiction. There is a serious accountability gap for past and present gross violations of human rights law, and national courts in other States play a fundamental role in filling that gap,” he hastened to add.
Gharibabadi, who previously served as Iran’s permanent envoy to the UN nuclear agency in Vienna, said Rehman’s press statement “in support of a grave injustice” was “yet another indication of his inherent inclination to use his UK-sponsored mandate for a self-aggrandizing campaign to please Iran’s adversaries at the cost of sacrificing the basic principles of human rights.”
In a letter to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights last week, Gharibabadi had expressed his “deep concern” about gross human rights violations committed by the Swedish authorities against Nouri.
“I request you to take all necessary measures to hold Sweden accountable and to prevent further violations and to secure the release of Mr. Nouri,” he said in the letter addressed to Michelle Bachelet.
On Thursday, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani rejected the Swedish court’s verdict as “unacceptable”, which he said was based on unfounded allegations made by the MEK terrorist group.