Mustafa Nili, a Distinguished Human Rights Lawyer

Mustafa Nili, a distinguished human rights lawyer, is known for his tireless defense of Iranian citizens and activists regardless of the political threats he has routinely faced. From the Green Movement to the 2019 Protests to the COVID-19 crisis in Iran, Nili has always been committed to the Iranian people. This is his story.

Recognizing courageous women human rights activists inside Iran

This International Women’s Day, we wanted to honor and acknowledge some of the women activists doing incredible work on the ground inside Iran. These women, and many others like them in Iran have shown immense courage and determination in the face of imprisonment, violence, and unyielding repression. Their resolve continues to inspire us, and we […]

UN Human Rights Council Passes New Investigative Mechanism in Session on Iran Abuses

The United Nations Human Rights Council convened a special session Thursday on ongoing human rights abuses in Iran. During the session, the council passed a new mechanism that will compile facts on rights abuses on the ground, setting the stage for international accountability measures targeting those responsible for abuses. The mechanism passed 25-6, with 16 abstentions. China’s effort to strip the mechanism of its power was voted down, 6-25.

UN Seeks Accountability from Iran for Human Rights Violations

The United Nations General Assembly Third Committee – which considers measures on human rights – approved a resolution on November 16th condemning the Iranian government’s human rights abuses and expressing support for the Iranian protesters who are fighting for their basic rights and freedom. According to a UN statement, the resolution “sends a message to the Iranian people that the international community stands with them.” Furthermore, it calls “for independent, impartial, and transparent investigations and accountability for the Government of Iran’s continued human rights violations.” Recently, the ambassadors of Germany and Iceland sent a letter to the UN Office in Geneva requesting a special session of the Human Rights Council on the deteriorating human rights situation in Iran. The special session is now scheduled to happen on November 24th. 

Extent of the Islamic Republic’s Brutal Crimes Exposed by Human Rights Groups

Since the killing of Mahsa Amini—at the hands of Iran’s so-called morality police—sparked nationwide demonstrations in Iran weeks ago, security forces have tried to subdue protests through condemnable and excessive displays of violence against Iranian people. The scope and severity of the state’s brutal crackdown on protests have been illuminated in a shocking new report […]

Iranian Lawyers and Human Rights Defenders Sentenced

The decision by Khamenei to politicize the pandemic as Iranians suffered the consequences was particularly egregious at a time when access to the vaccine was crucial to combating the virus. But before any suit could even be filed, the group was detained by Iranian security forces. Though a few of the detainees were quickly released, a group of five lawyers and activists remained unjustly behind bars, denied their freedom and their right to try to hold their officials accountable.

UNHRC Report on Human Rights Situation in Iran

The United Nations Human Rights Council marked its 50th session with days of speakers and presentations to look back on its work, including achievements and lessons, and to look to a future of greater engagement with human rights on a global scale. Yesterday, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al-Nashif presented the Secretary-General’s […]

UN Envoy Sparks Controversy on Human Rights Situation in Iran

Alena Douhan, the United Nations Special Rapporteur of unilateral coercive measures, was in Iran last week to examine and report on the impact of U.S. sanctions on the humanitarian situation in Iran. A professor of international law at the Belarusian State University, Douhan was appointed in 2020 and reports to the United Nations Human Rights […]

Diaspora communities, humanitarian and human rights organizations call on Biden to reform sanctions policies

Washington, DC – Today, 24 organizations representing American diaspora communities impacted by U.S. sanctions, as well as humanitarian relief, human rights, and pro-peace organizations, called on the Biden administration to reassess U.S. sanctions and economic policies that carry a heavy human cost, worsened by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The letter states, “Whether country-wide sanctions or […]