To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the Government of Iran about allegations of violence against women.
The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK is concerned by the plight of women in Iran. On 3 June 2010, on the occasion of women’s day in Iran, my honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Alistair Burt, released a statement to show his support for women activists in Iran. Furthermore, he raised the issue of women’s rights during a meeting with the Iranian ambassador on 19 July.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made recently to the Government of Iran about human rights.
Lord Howell of Guildford: We believe that the human rights situation in Iran is deplorable, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office continues to take opportunities to raise human rights with the Government of Iran in both a bilateral context, and with EU partners. In the past two months, the Government have made a number of statements about the human rights situation and have met Iranian officials including most recently when my honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Alistair Burt, met the Iranian ambassador on 19 July 2010. Furthermore, in Geneva last month, the UK signed up to a cross-regional statement by Norway and signed by 55 other states calling on Iran to improve urgently its human rights record.