Hengaw's Statement Condemning the Government-Sanctioned Killing of Armita Garavand

Hengaw's Statement Condemning the Government-Sanctioned Killing of Armita Garavand

20:28 - 28 October 2023


Armita Garavand (April 2, 2006 – October 28, 2023) was a teenager who tragically slipped into a coma on September 1, 2023, following an assault by agents of the Islamic Republic of Iran. This assault was prompted by her alleged violation of the mandatory hijab law within the Tehran metro and during her stay at Fajr Hospital, which is affiliated with the Science University of the Army. Armita, an 11th-grade student at a conservatory in Tehran, remained in a coma and, regrettably, passed away after 28 days.

In our role as a human rights organization, we vehemently denounce the killing of Armita at the hands of the security forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran. We hold Ali Khamenei accountable for the tragic death of Armita Garavand, as well as for the undue pressure, torture, and coerced confession extracted from her family. The untimely demise of a teenager for merely exercising her personal freedom to decide whether to wear the hijab or not constitutes a serious violation of human rights.

The freedom to choose one's attire, including the decision to wear the hijab, should be a fundamental right enjoyed by every individual without the threat of punishment or intimidation. Taking a person's life for breaching such a law not only contradicts the principles of human rights but also reveals a disturbing disregard for the sanctity of human life.

Considering the unlikelihood of the Islamic Republic of Iran conducting a thorough investigation into this case, identifying the culprits, and holding them accountable, particularly given their history of concealing the truth, notably in the case of Jina Amini's government-sanctioned murder, and the subsequent loss of trust in government institutions, it is imperative to prevent any further obfuscation. We call for a comprehensive inquiry into the killing of Garavand, to be carried out by an independent medical team consisting of members from Doctors Without Borders and the International Committee of the Red Cross office based in Tehran, along with a representative from the United Nations Fact-Finding Committee in Iran.

We implore the international community and human rights institutions to redouble their efforts in pressuring the Iranian government to uphold the principles of basic human rights within their nation.