- Parliamentary Assembly
debate on 25 June 2009 (24th Sitting) (see Doc. 11968, report of the Political Affairs Committee, rapporteur:
Mr Lindblad). Text adopted by the Assembly on
25 June 2009 (24th Sitting).
1 The Parliamentary
Assembly is deeply concerned about the situation in Iran following
the announcement of the results of the presidential election held
on 12 June 2009, according to which the incumbent President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad won 66% of the votes cast.
2 Numerous alleged irregularities during the vote, evoked by
the three defeated presidential candidates, as well as 646 complaints
of misconduct lodged with the Council of Guardians, raise justified
concerns as regards the fairness of the electoral process as established
by Iranian law. In particular, reported cases of opposition monitors
being refused access to polling stations and a large number of mobile
ballot boxes not subject to verification by monitors are in clear
contradiction with basic electoral standards.
3 Non-violent protests and massive peaceful demonstrations in
favour of the main opposition candidate, Hossein Mousavi, which
have been taking place in Iran since 13 June 2009, constitute a
legitimate political action inscribed in the democratic principle
of freedom of expression. Use of violence against peaceful demonstrators
is a serious infringement of human rights and the basic principles
4 The Assembly deplores the recent actions of the state police
and the Basij militia, which resulted in the death of at least 18
people, according to the official sources, and many more according
to independent sources, as well as numerous other casualties.
5 Similarly, the Assembly regrets the excessive use of force
and brutality by the police, as well as the fact that over 400 demonstrators
have been placed in detention.
6 Moreover, the official statements made, and repressive measures
taken, by the Iranian authorities in reaction to the massive demonstrations
give rise to utmost concern about future possible developments.
In particular, the detention of a number of politicians, their families
and journalists, including five members of the family of Hashemi
Rafsanjani and Ebrahim Yazdi, a former foreign minister and a leader
of the Freedom Movement of Iran, the closure of the opposition newspapers,
the blockage of websites and mobile phone services and the restrictions
imposed on domestic and foreign journalists, illustrate the government’s
intention to suppress the opposition and to avoid any form of political
dialogue as it has succeeded in doing for thirty years now.
7 The Council of Europe and its Assembly, as a leading European
parliamentary organisation standing for human rights, democracy
and the rule of law, cannot remain silent in the face of such lack
of respect for universal values and of the serious threat of further
violence, potentially leading to dramatic consequences.
8 The situation in Iran has been a matter of concern for the
Assembly for a long time, in particular the nuclear issue, which
has been the subject of several debates and resulted in Resolutions
1436 (2005) and 1567 (2007) on Iran’s nuclear programme: the need
for an international response. Another report is under preparation
in the Political Affairs Committee.
9 Furthermore, Iran’s destabilising role in the region, including
its support for terrorist activities, provocative statements on
and refusal to recognise Israel and the denial of the Holocaust,
has been condemned on the occasion of numerous debates on the situation
in the Middle East.
10 The Assembly firmly believes that the only way to find a peaceful
and sustainable solution to the present situation in Iran, as well
as stability and peace in the region, is through democracy, respect
for human rights and the rule of law.
11 The Assembly notes that the election of Barack Obama as President
of the United States and his statements demonstrating his readiness
to launch an enhanced dialogue with the Iranian authorities have opened
up a new window of opportunity for confidence building and for enabling
the Iranian people to take the place they deserve in the international
12 The Assembly recalls the deep concern over violence against
demonstrators and the post-election crisis in Iran expressed by
the Presidency of the European Union and by the United Nations Secretary-General,
Ban Ki-moon, in their respective declarations.
13 The Assembly expresses the very firm hope that Europe will
play its full part in resolving this crisis, which is of direct
concern to it, in line with the position adopted by the Council
of the European Union on 18 and 19 June 2009 strongly condemning
the use of violence and stressing the urgent need for Iran to engage
in dialogue with the international community on all matters of concern.
14 The Assembly stands ready to contribute to efforts aimed at
building confidence and promoting democratic values by engaging
in a dialogue with the Iranian Parliament and the democratic forces
in Iran, as well as with Iranian civil society.
The Assembly urges the Iranian authorities to:
15.1 refrain from using force and
violence against peaceful demonstrators;
15.2 15.2.release the more than 400 people detained during
the peaceful demonstrations of the last few days;
15.3 release the more than 170 politicians and their families,
and the journalists detained following the demonstrations;
lift the restrictive measures imposed on freedom of expression
and, in particular;
15.4.1 stop closing
15.4.2 stop disrupting Internet and mobile services;
15.4.3 stop sanctioning and expelling foreign journalists and
allow them, as well as domestic journalists, to report freely on
15.5 allow an independent and credible investigation into the
alleged irregularities in the election process;
15.6 initiate a meaningful dialogue in the internal political
15.7 respond in a positive way to the new approach of the United
States administration and establish a dialogue with the international
community with a view to mutual confidence building.
16 The Assembly calls on all sides of Iranian politics to refrain
from any form of violence to achieve political goals and to favour
The Assembly calls on Council of Europe member and observer
17.1 intensify contacts
with the Iranian authorities with a view to conveying the concerns
of the international community;
17.2 17.2.establish an enhanced political dialogue.
18 The Assembly calls on the Iranian Parliament to contribute
to regional stability and to engage in a meaningful dialogue with
the international community.
The Assembly resolves to:
up its contacts with the Iranian Parliament and the democratic forces
in Iran as well as Iranian civil society;
19.2 follow closely how the situation in Iran develops.