Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Promoting tolerance and justice through knowledge and understanding

Public Flogging in Khorasan Razavi: Man Accused of Burglaries Given 74 Lashes at Site of Alleged Crime

The Provincial Ministry of Justice Office of Khorasan Razavi / Translation by Abdorrahman Boroumand Center
Abdorrahman Boroumand Center
September 26, 2018
Web article


According to the director of public relations and communications, after the lashing sentence of a convict was carried out in the Zebar Khan Region, the Provincial Ministry of Justice Office of Khorasan Razavi issued an announcement.

Public Lashing Sentence Carried Out in Khorasan Razavi

After the lashing sentence of a convict was carried out in the Zebar Khan Region, the Provincial Ministry of Justice Office of Khorasan Razavi issued an announcement. It reads,

In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate the Merciful

“Justice is the foundation of the state.” [Quotation from the Quran]

After multiple robberies had taken place committed by an individual named A. T., son of Ismail, and his arrest by the agents of the Judiciary and subsequent opening of a criminal case against him in the Public and Revolutionary courts of Zebar Khan Region, the individual was proved to be a criminal. After an indictment had been issued against him, A. T.’s case was referred to a competent court. In view of the validation of the indictment by Branch 101 of the Criminal Court and Branch 2 of the Public Court of the Zebar Khan Region, which led to the issuance of a guilty verdict; as well as the validation of the verdict by Branch 25 of the Court of Appeals of Khorasan Razavi Province and the finality of the verdict, the legal procedures to carry out the sentence started. After the legal procedures were finished, part of the verdict calling for the convict to receive 74 lashes in public at the site of the crime was carried outon the same day.

It is to be noted that the convict is addicted to narcotics, and has had criminal records in multiple crimes including robbery, and the crimes he committed severely disturbed the public in the region. As such, A. T., son of Islamil, was sentenced to three years of imprisonment, return of the robbed items to the owner, and receiving 74 lashes in public at the site of the crime.

Director of the Public Relations and Communications of the Provincial Ministry of Justice Office of Khorasan Razavi


ABF Note


Findings of guilt in the Islamic Republic of Iran's Judicial Proceedings

The Islamic Republic of Iran's criminal justice system regularly falls short of the standards for due process necessary for impartiality, fairness, and efficacy. Suspects are often held incommunicado and not told of the reason for their detainment. Defendants are frequently prohibited from examining the evidence used against them. Defendants are sometimes prohibited from having their lawyers present in court. Additionally, confessions, made under duress or torture, are commonly admitted as proof of guilt. Because Iran's courts regularly disregard principles essential to the proper administration of justice, findings of guilt may not be evaluated with certainty.

Corporal Punishment: the Legal context in the Islamic Republic of Iran

The Islamic Republic's criminal code recognizes corporal punishment for a wide range of offenses: consumption of alcohol, theft, adultery, "flouting" of public morals, and mixing of the sexes in public. Judges have the latitude to mete out corporal punishment for those sentenced to death. In such cases, the flogging is carried out before death to maximize the suffering of defendant. Aside from flogging, the Islamic Republic also employs amputations as a punishment for theft. In such cases, the defendant is taken to a hospital and put under anesthesia as his hand or foot is amputated. In some cases the left foot and right hand are cut off, making it difficult for the condemned to walk, even with the assistance of a cane or crutches.

The Islamic Republic's Systematic Violation of its International Obligations under International Law

The use of corporal punishment is contrary to international law and is addressed in several international agreements. Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which Iran has ratified, states that, "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." Identical language is also used in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which Iran is also a party to. The strongest expression of international disapproval is contained in the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT). This treaty defines torture as, "any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as ... punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed." Although the Islamic Republic of Iran has yet to sign the CAT, the prohibition on torture is now considered jus cogens and, therefore, part of customary international law. Furthermore, even though the norm against corporal punishment is not yet a jus cogens, there is increasing evidence that it is illegal under international human rights law.[1] In Osbourne v. Jamaica, the Committee Against Torture (a body of experts responsible for monitoring compliance with the Convention) held that "corporal punishment constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment contrary to Article 7 of the Convention." The Islamic Republic of Iran's systematic violations of its obligations under international law have been addressed by the UN General Assembly multiple times, most recently in December 2007. In Resolution 62/168, the UN expressed deep concern with Iran's continued flouting of international human rights law, particularly, "confirmed instances of torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, including flogging and amputations."