Policy and Vice-President of the Commission, issued the following statement today:
“I am deeply concerned at the number of executions in Iran in 2011. This goes against
the worldwide trend towards the abolition of the death penalty. The number of executions in Iran
last year is reportedly the highest in recent history, making Iran the world’s leading user of the
death penalty per inhabitant.
Thousands of individuals remain at risk of execution, including Ms Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani
and Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani. The EU reiterates its call on Iran not to execute them. Hundreds of
individuals were executed in 2011 after grossly unfair trials, without the right of appeal and for
offences which according to international standards should not result in capital punishment. The
EU recalls that in countries still retaining the death penalty, this sentence may be used only for the
most serious crimes.
The EU holds a strong and principled position against the death penalty. It therefore calls on Iran,
as it does on all states which insist on maintaining the death penalty, to halt pending executions and
to introduce a moratorium.