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Iran Executed 223 People in First Five Months of 2012, UN Says

The government of Iran carried out as many as 223 executions, of which 82 were done in secret, in the first five months of this year, a United Nations investigator said.

Ahmed Shaheed, the UN special rapporteur on the human rights situation in Iran, said in a report made public today that at least 141 officially announced executions took place between January and early June 2012. A further 82 executions were done in secret in that same period, according to the report.

Under Iranian law, the death sentence can be applied for crimes such as alcohol consumption, adultery and drug trafficking. Two men were sentenced to death in June for drinking, the report says.

There were 53 executions across the country during one week in May, according to the report.

“A large number of those sentenced to death were convicted in the absence of fair trial standards,” Shaheed wrote in the report.

There have been 3,766 floggings since 2002, with 1,444 in 2009 alone, according to the report. Common charges include adultery, public disruption such as taking part in “illegal gatherings” and drug offenses.

Shaheed, who wasn’t allowed to enter Iran to assess the situation, said his 22-page report is based on 99 interviews of which 75 were first-hand accounts.

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