March 12, 2015 / 12:21 PM / 2 years ago

U.N. rights investigator denounces abuses in Iran

GENEVA, March 12 (Reuters) - A United Nations human rights investigator called on Iran on Thursday to revoke laws restricting freedoms of the press and expression, release some 30 detained journalists and bloggers and halt satellite jamming and blocking of websites.

Ahmed Shaheed, U.N. special rapporteur on Iran, also said that at least 753 people were believed to have been executed last year, the highest number in 12 years, and urged authorities to rescind capital punishment for drug offences and juveniles.

"High priority should be placed on amending laws and policies that undermine or violate internationally recognised rights and standards," Shaheed said in his annual 81-page report to the U.N. Human Rights Council, meeting in Geneva. (Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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