Sunday , May 26 2024


10 April 2024 – The death penalty or state murder is the Islamic Republic’s most important tool for instilling societal fear to maintain power. Executions in Iran increased dramatically following the “Woman, Life, Freedom” uprising, with at least 834 people executed in 2023.

In 2023, more than half of all recorded executions in Iran were for drug-related charges. At least 471 people were executed without any backlash or political cost for the Islamic Republic. The majority of those executed are from deprived and marginalised communities. The number of executions carried out in the ethnic regions, particularly the Kurd and Baluch, is disproportionally high compared to their population. In 2023, a third of those executed for drug-related charges were Baluch people.

Drug defendants are sentenced to death by Revolutionary Courts based on torture-tainted confessions, without due process and fair trial rights and often without access to a lawyer.

Drug-related executions have not received appropriate international reaction and their daily implementation is met with media silence. This has led to the authorities carrying out 18 times more drug executions in 2023 compared to 2020 with the lowest political cost.

On the other hand, the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) which cooperates with Iran in combating drug trafficking, has not only remained silent about the sharp hike in drug executions, but signed a new agreement with the Islamic Republic in May 2023. In addition to legitimising the state’s use of the death penalty, this cooperation also leads to more executions through financial aid and equipment.

We are concerned that hundreds more will be executed in the coming months if we do not increase the political cost of these executions for the Islamic Republic. We call on all human rights organisations and activists to take part in a special global campaign to stop drug-related executions in Iran.

The aim of the campaign is to echo the voice of the most voiceless victims of the Islamic Republic’s execution and intimidation machine. We also urge the UNODC to make any cooperation with the Islamic Republic contingent on a complete halt on drug-related executions.

Abolition Death Penalty of Iraq Organization
ACAT Belgique
ACAT France
ACAT Germany (Action by Christians for the Abolition of Torture)
Ahwaz Human Rights Organisation (AHRO)
Alborz, Paris – collectif en soutien au soulèvement “Femme, Vie, Liberté”
Alliance Path for Iran (API)
All Human Rights for All in Iran
Alliance Path for Iran (API)
Association des Chercheurs Iraniens (ACI)
Association for the Human Rights of the Azerbaijani People in Iran (AHRAZ)
Balochistan Human Rights Group
Bramsh – Balochistan Women’s Voices
Campaign to Free Political Prisoners in Iran (CFPPI)
Capital Punishment Justice Project, Australia
Center for Human Rights in Iran
Centre Zagros pour les Droits de l’Homme
Death Penalty Focus (USA)
Defenders of Human Rights Center (Shirin Ebadi)
Eleos Justice, Monash University, Australia
Ensemble contre la peine de mort (ECPM)
Ensemble pour l’Iran
Federal Association of Vietnamese Refugees in the Federal Republic of Germany
Feminista Bonn
Frau Leben Freiheit Darmstadt
Frauen für Freiheit e.v
Free Human Association
Free Them Now
Global Campaign to Stop Executions In Iran
Grupo de Apoyo Mutuo, Guatemala
HANA Human Rights Organization
Hands Off Cain
Hengaw Organization for Human Rights
HÁ Organization
Humanity Diaspo, France
International Committee Against Execution (ICAE)
International Iranian Physicians and Healthcare Providers Association (IIPHA)
International Women in Power
Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO)
Iran Human Rights Documentation Center
Iranian Healthcare Association for Democracy and Human Rights
Iransk Solidaritetsforum
Justice for Iran
Justice Supporters Association
Kanoon-e Khavaran
Key and Vulnerable Population Tanzania (KVP Forum)
Kurdistan Human Rights Association – Geneva
Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN)
Kurdistan Human Rights Reporters Center
Kurdpa Human Rights Organization
Kurdish Community of Quebec (Simorgh; Centre socio-culturel des Iraniens de Québec)
Kurds for a Better Future (Kurdistan Human Rights Association – Geneva)
Minnesota 4Iran
Nemiran Center
NIKA, Network of Iranians for Liberty and Democracy
Norsk Iransk Råd
Rescue Alternatives Liberia
Rev Group Iran
Rojhalat Women Organisation
SALAM DHR, Bahrain
Simorgh; Centre socio-culturel des Iraniens de Québec
SolidIran Association
Solidarität mit der Iranischen Revolution – Frankfurt/Mainz
Stop Child Executions (SCE)
The Baloch Activists Campaign
The Christian Union for Progress and Human Rights, DRC
The Sunny Center Foundation (USA)
Transitional Justice Working Group (TJWG), South Korea
Transnational Community Federation e.V
United for Iran (U4I)
United to End Executions in Iran
Voices of Iranians- Frankfurt
Voix de la diaspora iranienne (Voices of Iranians- Frankfurt)
Voluntary Health Association of Kurdistan (Hanai Rojhelat)
Volunteer Doctors of Kurdistan
World Coalition Against the Death Penalty
Woman-Life-Freedom, Melbourne
Women’s Independence and Sustainable Equality (WISE)