United for Iran calls for Iran Human Rights Investigation

Apr 23, 20150 comments

United for Iran has joined 18 other organizations in calling for United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein to investigate the ongoing harassment of the family of Younes Asakerah, an Ahwazi Arab man who died after an act of self-immolation in apparent protest against the confiscation of his produce stall. An excerpt of the letter is below:

“According to sources close to the case, local authorities in the southwestern Iranian city of Khorramshahr (Mohammareh in Arabic) had repeatedly confiscated a produce stall belonging to Mr. Asakerah, a street vendor and father of two children. The last confiscation took place on 13 March as the municipality was reportedly clearing unlicensed stalls in preparation for state- organized tours to the city.

On 14 March 2015, Mr. Asakerah went to the Municipal Office to request a permit as directed by the relevant authorities. Once there, municipal officials allegedly denied his request and told him to leave. A source says that Mr. Asakerah threatened that he would commit suicide by setting himself on fire but officials ignored him. That same day he went to a petrol station where he purchased a can of petrol. He returned to the Municipal Office and burnt himself in front of the building. Mr. Asakerah suffered burns on 92 percent of his body and died eight days later on 22 March in Motahhari Hospital in Tehran.”