In an effort to effect a change in the penal laws of Iran to meet the international standards of human rights and justice such as those laws effecting children, the Iranian human rights lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei registered for the upcoming parliamentary elections in Iran. However as anticipated, his application was denied by the authorities of the Islamic regime in Iran.
Mr. Mostafaei represents many other Iranian youth facing executions and he has been a proponent of overhaul of Iran’s penal codes in matters such as women and children’s rights. He also co-defended the case of Nazanin Fatehi who was eventually found to be innocent and release. In a letter to Iran’s parliament last year , he asked for a speedy approval of the parliamentary bill effecting juveniles which has been stalled for the past four years. He also wrote another letter asking Ayatollah Shahrudi , the head of Iran’s judiciary to halt child executions until the passage of this juvenile bill in parliament be accessed. None of his letters were responded to. Mostafaei’s effort to enter Iran’s parliament was another attempt by him to help those who are facing injustice in Iran including his clients who are facing imminent executions.
More than half of the reformist candidates have reportedly been disqualified throughout Iran by the conservative interior ministry. The reason for denials was explained to be due to applicants’ “Lack of commitment to Islam in practice” . In 2004 the authorities banned more than 2,000 out of 8,172 candidates who registered, many of them reformists, leading the way for a victory by the conservatives. Even after the controlled election process, all approved parliamentary bills are also subject to approval of Islamic a pre-selected Islamic Guardian Council. Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei (another non-elected position) is the ultimate authority and maintains the final say in all matters.
According to the constitution of the Islamic regime in Iran, the candidates for parliamentary and presidential elections must be pre-selected by the Islamic authorities . This allows Iran’s regime to authorize only Islamic fundamentalists to enter the parliamentary and presidential races. Such pre-selection processes of candidates is in violation of international and democratic election standards.