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New UN human rights expert on Iran seeks cooperation and dialogue with Government

GENEVA (6 August 2018) – The new UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Javaid Rehman, has reached out to the Iranian Government with a view to seeking its cooperation with his mandate in accordance with Human Rights Council resolution

“I look forward to constructive engagement with the Iranian authorities and hope to create a space for informed and open dialogue with the authorities,” Rehman said.

The Special Rapporteur also added that he will seek to build on previous engagement between his predecessor, the late Asma Jahangir, and the authorities on the full compliance of the State with its international human rights obligations. Rehman said he had already received a number of reports raising concerns about alleged violations of human rights in the country.

“I have written to the Iranian authorities to introduce myself and express my interest in visiting the country in order to obtain a better understanding of the human rights situation in the country,” he said.

In addition to engaging with the Iranian authorities, the Special Rapporteur will also work with civil society and human rights defenders, in accordance with the code of conduct for Special Procedures mandate holders.

“I intend to clearly set out some of the measures that the Iranian authorities have taken and can further take with respect to the human rights situation in the country, and to also draw attention to the voices of the victims of alleged violations in line with my mandate,” he said.


Javaid Rehman is a Professor of International Human Rights Law and Muslim Constitutionalism at Brunel University, London. Mr Rehman teaches human rights law and Islamic law and continues to publish extensively in the subjects of international human rights law, Islamic law and constitutional practices of Muslim majority States.  Several of his published works have been translated into various languages.  As a human rights lawyer, Mr Rehman has also provided legal opinions in various high-profile cases in a number of jurisdictions. On 6 July 2018, Mr. Rehman was appointed as the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran. He commenced his duties officially on 13 July 2018 and will present his first report to the seventy-third session of the General Assembly.

The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.

UN Human Rights, Country Page: Iran

For additional information, please email sr-iran@ohchr.org, or contact Gurdip Sangha (Tel. +41 22 928 9235 / email: gsangha@ohchr.org).

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts please contact:  Jeremy Laurence – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383/ jlaurence@ohchr.org)

This year is the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN on 10 December 1948. The Universal Declaration – translated into a world record 500 languages – is rooted in the principle that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” It remains relevant to everyone, every day. In honour of the 70th anniversary of this extraordinarily influential document, and to prevent its vital principles from being eroded, we are urging people everywhere to Stand Up for Human Rights: www.standup4humanrights.org