Iran: Authorities Accused of Raping and Sexually Harassing Detainees
Monday, November 15, 2010 2:50 PM

In the wake of the post-election demonstrations, the Iranian authorities took severe action to suppress anyone viewed as criticizing the state. Thousands of people were arrested, and stories of abuse from these individuals are numerous. Among the main abuses being detailed, accusations of rape of both women and men have been raised.


Women in detention have reported sexual insults, threats, and rape being used against them by the authorities with frequency. The British media recently covered the story of a woman who was detained and raped by security forces because her fiancée was involved in demonstrations. A female student, Zahra Kamali, relayed to Amnesty International that she was sexually harassed and groped when arrested.


The authorities in Iran have acknowledged that some abuse occurred in the Kahrazik detention center, but otherwise have denied all allegations of mistreatment and rape as a torture tactic. Rape carried out by public officials or at their instigation qualifies as torture, according to international and regional human rights bodies. The gravity of abuse being reported in Iran has led to a number of human rights organizations, such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, to call for the UN Secretary General to appoint a special envoy to investigate the situation.


Compiled from: Rape In Iran's Prisons: The Cruellest Torture,, (15 November 2010).