UN General Assembly Resolution 2001

The 56th session of the United Nations General Assembly, which was held in New York from September to December 2001, adopted yet another resolution defending the rights of Baha’is in Iran. It was the 16th such resolution passed by the United Nations in 17 years.

This resolution, which was approved on 19 December 2001 with a vote of 72 in favor, 49 against, and 46 abstaining, refers to the situation of the Baha’is in three operative paragraphs (UN document no. A/C.3/56/L.50).

In paragraph 3(h), the General Assembly

Expresses its concern ... At the still-existing discrimination against persons belonging to minorities, in particular against the Baha’is, Christians, Jews and Sunnis.
In paragraph 4(d), the General Assembly
Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran ... to eliminate all forms of discrimination based on religious grounds or against persons belonging to minorities and to address this matter in an open manner, with the full participation of the minorities themselves, as well as to implement fully the conclusions and recommendations of the Special Rapporteur on religious intolerance relating to the Baha’is and other minority religious groups until they are completely emancipated.
In operative paragraph 5, the General Assembly
Decides to continue the examination of the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, paying particular attention to further developments, including the situation of the Baha’i s and other minority groups, at its fifty-seventh session under the item entitled ‘Human Rights questions’, in the light of additional elements provided by the Commission on Human Rights.
In paragraph 3(d), the General Assembly
Expresses its concern ... at the growing number of executions in the absence of respect for internationally recognized safeguards, and in particular deplores public and especially cruel executions, such as stoning....
In paragraph 3(e), the General Assembly expressed its concern
at the still unsatisfactory compliance with international standards in the administration of justice, the absence of due process of law and the use of national security laws to deny the rights of the individual....
There was also an indirect reference to the Baha’is as one of Iran’s religious minorities. In operative paragraph 4(h), the General Assembly
Calls upon the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran: to implement judicial reform speedily and completely, to guarantee the dignity of the individual and to ensure the full application of due process of law and fair and transparent procedures by an independent and impartial judiciary and, in this context, to ensure respect for the rights of the defence and the equity of verdicts in all instances, including for members of religious minority groups....
The resolution was cosponsored by 34 countries: Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the United States of America.
General Assembly Plenary Recorded Vote on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran (A/56/583/Add.3 Draft Resolution)
19 December 2001

States who voted in favor (72):

Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Botswana, Bulgaria, Canada, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kiribati, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, St. Kitts and Nevis, Samoa, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, United Kingdom, United States, Yugoslavia.

States who voted against (49):

Afghanistan, Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Chad, China, Comoros, Congo, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Gambia, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Lao PDR, Lebanon, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela, Vietnam.

States who abstained (46):

Angola, Antigua-Barbuda, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Cote d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Georgia, Ghana, Guinea, Jamaica, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mexico, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Nigeria, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Zambia.

States who did not participate in the vote (22):

Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Guinea-Bissau, Iraq, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Liberia, Mongolia, Niger, St. Vincent-Grenadines, Sao Tome Principe, Seychelles, Somalia, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Tonga, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Zimbabwe.

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