The publication of the news of the Belgian government’s request to the parliament of this country to approve the bill to sign the judicial cooperation agreement between the Kingdom of Belgium and the anti-human regime ruling Iran, caused a wave of astonishment, disbelief and astonishment among all free-thinkers, freedom-seekers and human rights activists. Considering the very dangerous consequences of the approval of such a bill for the future of Belgium and Europe, as well as confronting the widespread influence of the systematic corruption of the Islamic Republic of Iran regime, especially in democratic countries, the International Organisation to Preserve Human Rights decided to, based on its inherent duty, and by examining and explaining some of the hidden dimensions of this very dangerous agreement, should enlighten the minds of the respected representatives of the parliament as well as the public opinion of Belgium, Europe and the world regarding the very dangerous and irreparable consequences of its approval in the Belgian parliament.:
1- The Iranian regime is by all measure, one of the most corrupt ruling systems in the world!
As the Islamic Republic of Iran, has been recognized as one of the most corrupt countries in the world according to the latest Transparency International report, which ranks Iran as 150th most corrupt country, among 180 countries in the world. Therefore, the Belgium parliament’s approval of above mentioned measure, will result in Belgium dealing directly with one of the most corrupt and inhuman regimes in the world. Therefore, the question arises for all freedom seekers, how a democratic nation like Belgium can even think of signing a joint judicial corporation with a regime that well known globally for its corruption and inhumanity?
2- There is a fundamental unequivocal difference between the legal systems of Belgium and Iran
The Belgian judicial system is based on the legal system of »Civil Law« or civil rights, in which individual rights and freedoms play a central role, and the most important feature of this legal system is the a set of laws that are considered the main source of judicial decisions in Belgian courts. While Iran’s judicial system – which, of course, can hardly be called a system – is based on the ideas and decrees of clerics, which completely supersede the parliamentary codified and approved laws. This point is explicitly stated in the Article 167 of the Iranian Constitution. Therefore, based on this principle, a judge can issue a verdict, by referring to Islamic sources or fatwas, and use these sources to bypass any legal law. In other words, in Iran a judge can, based on the opinions of clerics, usually Shiites, from anywhere in the world – For example, the opinions of a cleric in North Africa – decide to issue a court order for an Iranian citizen that overrules Iranian codified laws!
3. Iran’s judicial system lacks structure
Iran’s judicial system has at least three different jurisdictions, including the normal law courts, the revolution courts and the special court for the clergy. Thus, many Iranian laws, including civil and criminal procedures are not recognized by the two main parts of the Iranian judicial system, namely the revolutionary courts and the special court for the clergy. Moreover, the very existence of the special clergy court shows that in Iran’s judicial system, not all citizens are considered equal before the law, as the clergy have special status in Iran, which violates the principle of justice and equality.
4- Iranian justice system has effectively legalised paedophilia
Iran’s judicial system is the only judicial system in the world, where paedophilia has effectively been legalised and goes unpunished.
According to the fatwas of the majority of clerics, which is the main source of judicial ruuling, marriage and performing incomplete sex with breastfed children from six months and above is completely legal and is even can be registered in the marriage registers. Also, marriage with full sex is legal from the age of thirteen, which of course, It can be registered in the marriage and divorce registry offices. So, a thirteen year old can be married, even though legally, they can’t even open a bank account before they are 18! Therefore the question arise that does the Belgian legal system really want to cooperate with such a legal system?
5- Judicial cooperation with Iran is in fact a violation of sanctions.
In general, Iran’s ruling system faces four groups of sanctions: United Nations sanctions, European Union sanctions, US Congressional sanctions and unilateral sanctions by governments such as Canada.
Some of these sanctions relate to Iran’s efforts to acquire nuclear technology, some relate to the Iranian missile program and medium-range missiles, which are obviously aggressive and can target the centre of Europe, and some sanctions, are in regards to human rights violations of the Iranian regime. According to some reports, the number of sanctions imposed against Iran is as high as 1,733
So the question arises, can the Belgian government really give a written guarantee that none of these sanctions will be violated during judicial cooperation with Iran’s judicial system?
Moreover, the punishment system of the Iranian regime’s judicial system is discriminatory. For example, under Iranian laws, punishments for the same crimes can vary according to the person’s religion and beliefs. Thus, the punishment for a cleric for the same crimes will not be the same as an ordinary Muslim, nor for a non-Muslim. As punishment under the judicial system in Iran follow a type of discrimination that is akin to religious apartheid.
6- Belgium’s cooperation with the IRGC will help the Iranian system to achieve its aim of exporting its extremist ideology globally.
As Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran announced recently, Iran is beginning its second phase of its revolution. The first step of the revolution was the establishment a stable Islamic fundamentalist system for more than forty years, and the second step is to spread this fundamentalist system to the whole world, especially Africa, Europe and America.
Moreover, this point is not even a secret, as many laws of Iran are set on the same basis, that is, the killing of infidels is not only, not a crime according to Iranian laws, but they may even be encouraged. For example, Article 210 of the Islamic Penal Code stipulates that the execution of the sentence of retribution in the case of the victim being a non-Muslim is conditional on his being a ‘dhimmi’. In Iranian jurisprudence, ‘dhimmi’ refers to non-Muslims, who are people of the book; that is, Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians. So as a result, if the victim is a non-Dhammi infidel, the perpetrator will not face justice. For example, if an Iranian is sentenced to twenty years in prison in Belgium and returns to Iran to serve the sentence, if he can prove that the victim or victims were not Muslims, he can be exempt from punishment by paying a very small fine. In addition, if a man kills his wife or children, they will face a very short punishment according to Iran’s laws. So the question arises will these cases also be included in the judicial cooperation agreement between Iran and Belgium?
7. Belgian National Security Considerations
The signing of this agreement will seriously jeopardize the security of Belgium because the most important military ally of Belgium, the United States of America, is considered as a hostile state in the Iran’s judicial system.
As the Tehran Prosecutor Abadi announced on October 18, 2016, Siamak Namazi and his father, Bagher Namazi, two Iranian-American citizens who were detained in Iran, were each sentenced to 10 years in prison on the charge of “collaborating with the hostile government of the United States”. According to this report, Nizar Zaka, a Lebanese citizen living in America, who travelled to Tehran to participate in a conference and who was arrested, was also sentenced to 10 years in prison for the crime of collaborating with the “hostile government of America.” Earlier, Gholamhossein Ajei, the spokesperson of the Judiciary, referring to Shahram Amiri’s case, said: “Regarding the access to the secrets of the system, he has been in contact with our hostile enemy, the Great Satan, and has sold our information to them.” In 2013, the Iranian physicist Omid Kokabi was convicted of the crime of collaborating with the “hostile American government” in two branches of the Revolutionary Court.
It also should be noted that according to Article 508 of the Islamic Penal Code, “anyone or a group who cooperates with hostile foreign countries in any way against the Islamic Republic of Iran, if he is not recognized as a combatant, he will be sentenced to one to ten years in prison, so cooperation with the Iranian judicial system, means cooperating with a system that officially considers Belgium’s most important ally, the United States of America, as an “enemy”. Therefore, the approval of this treaty will jeopardize the security of Belgium.
8- The proposed agreement is in actually in conflict with the international obligations of the Kingdom of Belgium
The signing of this agreement is a clear contradiction with the commitments of the Belgian government in the implementation of Article 5 and Article 6 of the NATO North Atlantic Treaty.
This is noteworthy, as Iran has so far carried out dozens of military attacks on the interests of the United States the most important military ally of Belgium. Iran has also repeatedly attacked the Ain al-Assad base in Iraq, which is the location of American forces. In addition, according to published reports, The Quds Force has killed more than 1,100 American soldiers in attacks in addition to the undeniable documentation, that Iran had a logistical role in the attacks of September 11, 2001. Therefore, according to the provisions of Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, which states: “…any armed attack against one or more of in Europe and North America; it will be considered as an attack against all of them…” Belgium’s judicial cooperation with Iran is in complete contradiction with the commitments of the Belgian government to its military ally.
9- Nullification of sanctions against Russia
This agreement will in effect make the sanctions against Russia ineffective
As the ruling regime of Iran is one of Russia’s closest allies, this agreement will also make many European and international sanctions against Russia ineffective. Moreover, the Belgium’s judicial cooperation with Iran will be for the benefit of Russia and to the detriment of the people of Ukraine, who are currently facing Russian military aggression with empty hands.
10- Different criminalization and the escape of criminals from punishment
This agreement will allow for different levels of criminalization and escape of criminals from punishment
As many actions that are crimes in Belgium are not only, not crimes in Iran, but are actually encouraged under Iranian laws.
For example, attack on the interests of Israel and the United States around the world, including in Europe, are not criminal acts in Iran. Therefore, criminals who return to Iran to serve their sentences will not only be exempt from punishment, but also will even be encouraged to continue their actions. For example, Kazem Darabi, who was imprisoned in Germany for the terrorism and was sentenced to life imprisonment, after entering Iran, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iran officially welcomed him. Another example was the case of Ali Vakili Rad, who was also sentenced to life imprisonment in France for the murder of Shapour Bakhtiar and Soroush Katbia, who once returned to Iran was officially welcomed by the then Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iran
11- Help to exempt non-Iranian criminals from punishment
This agreement will in effect also allow non-Iranian criminals to escape from punishment by becoming Iranian citizens. An example of such situation was the case Anis Naqsh, who is an international terrorist and was assistant to the famous terrorist Carlos, who murdered a French citizen and was sentenced to life imprisonment. However, in 1986, after obtaining Iranian citizenship, he was able to go free from French prison and travel to Iran where he established an organization in Tehran to coordinate terrorist operations around the world.
12- Belgian cooperation with Iranian judiciary is fundamental violation of human rights
With the aim of clarifying the unpredictable dimensions of human rights violations by Belgium in the event of the ratification of this agreement, the IOPHR would like to draw the attention of honourable representatives of the Belgian Parliament to some of the realities of human rights in Iran which are as follow:.
- Last year, Iran’s judicial system took the second place in the world after China by issuing more than 333 death sentences. Of course, based on the population per capita, Iran’s judicial system has taken the first place in the world for issuing death sentences.
- During the first six months of this year, more than 259 people have been executed in Iran, which shows a 70% increase compared to last year. Some executions are very brutal, such as throwing the sentenced person from a mountain or execution by stoning.
- Iran’s judicial system is the only judicial system in the world where judicial decisions on amputation are issued. According to reports, dozens of people across Iran are currently waiting for the implementation of the sentence to cut off their hands, and several cases of eye sockets removal have been reported.
- Iran’s judicial system is the most anti-feminist judicial system in the world, and hundreds of women are currently serving more than ten years in prison just for not wearing a headscarf.
- Ms. Zainab Jalalian, who was arrested at the age of 22, has spent her best days behind bars for more than fourteen years without any form of family visitation and without even one day of furlough, just because she is a woman. Ms. Saba Kord Afshari was sentenced to 24 years in prison just for opposing the mandatory hijab. Yasman Ariani, Monireh Arabshahi and Mozhgan Keshavarz, three women who protested the mandatory hijab, have been sentenced to more than 31 years in prison in Branch 54 of the Court of Appeal of Tehran Province. These are just a few examples of the thousands of women who are in prison because of hijab. It should be noted that according to the researches of IOPHR, “Hijab” is not a Quranic ruling and the Iranian judicial system only issues such heavy rulings for brave and fighting Iranian women with the aim of intimidation and suppression.
- Iran’s judicial system is also inherently opposed to environmental activists, and so far, at least 55 environmentalists have been sentenced to long-term prison terms for challenging the government’s environmental policies.
- In addition, the killing of prisoners in Iranian prisons by prison guards is completely normal and the perpetrators are not punished. For example, the murder of 33-year-old Behnam Mahjoubi Gonabadi Sufi, 64-year-old environmental activist Kavos Seyed Emami and hundreds of others whose names have been reported to human rights institutions.
13- Cooperation with the Iranian judiciary will promote state terrorism
Belgium’s judicial cooperation with Iran will clearly support a regime, which is known for global terrorism. Especially as the Iranian judicial system officially encourages international terrorism. As over the last forty years, it has been responsible for at least 400 assassination of Iranian citizens abroad by squads sent by the Islamic Republic of Iran. Some of the terrorist operations organized by the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran are as follows:
- The explosion of the United States embassy in Lebanon, 1983
- Mykonos restaurant attack in Germany, 1992
- Discovery of missiles from Iranian ships in the port of Antwerp in 1996
- Bombing of the Amia Jewish Center in Argentina, 1994
- Bombing of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia, 1996
- Involvement in the attacks of September 11, 2001
- Terrorist act in Kenya, 2012
- Bombing in Bangkok, 2012
- Bombings in India, 2012
- Terrorist act in Bahrain, 2015
- Attack on Japanese and Norwegian tankers in 2019
- Attempt to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington
- Extensive acts of terrorism in Iraq, such as the killing of free-thinking journalists who oppose Iran’s presence in Iraq
- The killing of more than 1100 American soldiers
- The killing of some political activists in Iraq
- Drone attack on the Iraqi Prime Minister’s residence
- Multiple missile attacks on the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan
- The plan to assassinate the American ambassador in South Africa 2020
- The discovery of the terrorist plans of the intelligence officer of the Islamic Republic in Kenya, November 2021
- Attempt to kill Israeli tourists in Istanbul June 2022
It is also noteworthy that during the last forty years not a single international terrorist has been tried and punished in Iran’s judicial system, all of which is a clear message to the representatives of the Belgian Parliament that Iranian judiciary is openly supportive of international terrorism.
The approval of this contract undoubtedly means legitimizing all the violations and crimes committed by the lawless regime ruling Iran.
Based on this, the International Organization to Preserve Human Rights reminds that considering that the position of the Kingdom of Belgium in the international transparency list has dropped three places in the last year, it is hoped that the honorable members of the parliament by making a correct and calculated decision will not only further reduce the position of Belgium in this not to prevent the list, but to cause this most complete federal democracy in the world to return to its true position among the top ten or even the top five countries in the world..
At the end, this quote from Alireza Panahian, the head of the think tank of the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ali Khamenei, in the Iranian universities is mentioned, who said that the Islamic Revolution of Iran is conquering the “Most Important Bottlenecks” of the world.
The question is, is the Belgian judicial system also one of those bottlenecks?
The International Organisation to Preserve Human Rights
London, Brussels, Berlin, Toronto, Washington
3rd July 2022