European lawmakers today passed a non-binding resolution deploring Iranian security forces’ widespread and disproportionate use of force against non-violent protesters in recent weeks and urged Iran to officially announce the death toll.
The resolution which was supported by all major political groups in the European Parliament also called on Tehran to “announce the total number of deaths and detainees, conduct a prompt, impartial, independent and transparent investigation into allegations of excessive use of force, including direct targeting of protestors by security forces, and hold all perpetrators of violence accountable,” our reporter in Brussels says.
Despite calls by the UN and Amnesty International, Iranian officials have refused to announce the death toll of the November protests. According to Amnesty International at least 304 protesters lost their lives in the protest against the hike in the price of gasoline including 18 children.
Even the high-ranking officials including Khamenei himself who ordered blood money to be paid to the families of those who “had no role in the protests” have admitted that unarmed protesters and innocent individuals individuals were among those killed by security forces. Thousands were arrested by security officials and many are still in detention.
European lawmakers also demanded that all protestors, human rights defenders and journalists currently held under arrest in Iran for exercising their legitimate rights to freedom of expression and assembly are freed unconditionally.
The authorities must “inform all families of the location of their detained relatives,” the statement released by the European Parliament said and reiterated their previous calls for the release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and many others who have been unlawfully detained in Iran.
In regard to Iran’s decision to shut down internet access to global networks, European lawmakers underscored that such actions are a clear violation of the freedom of speech and strongly condemned it.