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Rationale against Human Rights

Iran Attorney General: Human Rights Considerations Have Made us Hold Back on Implementing Divine Law

Fars News Agency / partial translation by Abdorrahman Boroumand Center
Abdorrahman Boroumand Center
January 16, 2019
Web article

Iran Attorney General Mohammad Ja’far Montazeri addressed a special conference of anti-theft law enforcement officials on the morning of January 16. A selection of his comments, delivered by video conference and reported by Fars News, appear below:

“The closure of workshops and factories may have an effect [on rates of robbery and theft]; we must therefore work to make sure those with direct responsibility for job-creation and industrial closures know that when the economic situation facing people has problems, crime rates will increase.”

"We hold back on divine commandments, unfortunately, so that we’re not condemned for human rights at the United Nations”

“People aren’t perfect. For those caught under economic stress and poverty - even if they’re pious and have religion faith – when the pressure mounts and they can’t provide for vital needs, the candle of faith flickers and their religious conviction waivers and they turn to theft and getting their hands on other people’s property to meet their needs.”

“We have methods [of fighting corruption] but we’re inattentive to them. Instead of treating causes, we go after effects. Fighting corruption means fighting these kinds of problems: if we want to be useful and get results, we should plan, synergize between agencies, come up with a strategy, and have a think tank.”

“In a society of piety, people who conduct their lives with the fear of God don’t permit themselves to reach for others’ property. Even if, in the depths of poverty and powerlessness, they might want to commit theft, their faith and virtue stand in the way.”

“One of the mistakes we make is that we fear frenzies whipped up in the name of ‘human rights.’ They tell us that how we deal with thieves is violent. Of course, given the verse in the Qor’an, any man or woman who commits theft, provided they meet certain conditions laid out in religious law, should have his or her hand cut off. God, the Compassionate and Merciful, has issued a decree when it comes to theft. We hold back on divine commandments, unfortunately, so that we’re not condemned for human rights at the United Nations.”

“A thief [deserves the punishment] of hand amputation, and a person plunders the national wealth [deserves the punishment] of execution.”