International People’s Tribunal on Iran Atrocities of November 2019
On 15 November 2019, following a massive, sudden spike in fuel prices, nationwide protests broke out across Iran. Protests were largely peaceful, but in certain cities, public and private property incurred damage, allegedly due to the protestors. At its peak, from 16 November, the government imposed a near-total shutdown of the internet, and conducted a brutal crackdown on protestors. Police, security, and military forces shot and arrested protestors, while the authorities restricted access to information.
Reports that protesters were being killed emerged during the early hours of the protests, with the government admitting at least 255. Media and Human Rights organisations however, have reported a death toll of between 304 and 1,500. Human rights organisation, Justice for Iran has documented incidents of use of unlawful lethal force in 39 cities across 15 provinces, over the course of less than five days, causing hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries.
One year on, in line with the Supreme Leader’s approved policy, the authorities continue to refuse to initiate judicial investigations or criminal proceedings. Instead, the families have had to settle for proposals of money and ‘martyrdom’ while being threatened and intimidated if they wanted to pursue their complaints.
Human rights groups have commenced two initiatives as a minimum form justice and accountability for the victims’ families.
- The establishment of a UN Commission of Inquiry by a group of international and Iranian NGOs;
- The adoption of human rights sanctions (including asset freezing and travel bans) against perpetrators by the EU.
Despite a lot of talks and promises, the international community has failed to take any meaningful or effective action.