The European Union strongly condemns the execution of the 17 year old Mohammad Hassanzadeh who was executed on 10 June 2008 in Sanandaj, the capital of the Iranian province of Kurdistan.
As Mohammad Hassanzadeh was a minor and his execution by the Iranian authorities is in direct contravention of international law.
There can be absolutely no justification for the use of the death penalty by the Iranian authorities in the case of juvenile offenders, which explicitly runs counter to the legally binding provisions of international law.
The European Union urges the Islamic Republic of Iran to immediately halt the use of the death penalty in the case of juvenile offenders (relating to crimes committed before the age of 18). The EU also calls upon the Iranian authorities to introduce a moratorium on the use of the death penalty in all instances.
The EU further calls upon the Islamic Republic of Iran to bring its domestic legislation and practice into line with the international human rights conventions which Iran has freely entered into and ratified, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. These two international human rights mechanisms clearly prohibit the execution of minors or people who have been convicted of crimes committed when they were minors. The provisions of these international legal instruments are legally binding on the Islamic Republic of Iran and must be respected by them immediately.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania and Serbia, and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova align themselves with this declaration.
* Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.