- It is increasingly recognized that human rights are essential to achieving sustainable development. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) served a conduit for promoting certain economic and social rights, but the initiative failed to recognize the need to address other core human rights and standards. By contrast, human rights principles and standards are now reflected in the new global development framework, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
- The Islamic Republic of Iran has been actively engaged in shaping the post-2015 development agenda, and volunteered to present its progress towards realizing the SDGs at the Volunteer National Review (VNR) during the second annual High-level Political Forum in July 2017. A human rights approach must be a central part of the Government’s development agenda in order to better realize the initiative’s objective to realize “more peaceful, just and inclusive societies which are free from fear and violence” with attention to democratic governance, rule of law, access to justice and personal security (in Goal 16), as well as an enabling international environment (in Goal 17 and throughout the framework)”.
- This report attempts to assess Iran’s performance with regard to specific indicators and targets for each of these goals, and explores how the promotion and protection of human rights in Iran supports the realization of the SDGs. It is based on both official governmental sources and reports from independent civil society organizations monitoring and documenting the Iranian government’s capacity to realize the SDG, among other international obligations. This includes Government statements, or “Key Messages” submitted by the Iranian government to inform the VNR process.
- This assessment is by no means comprehensive. However, our organization has identified several SDGs for which a human rights approach is particularly important — including SDG goals 1 (no poverty), 4 (quality education), 5 (gender equality), 8 (decent work and economic growth), 10 (reduced inequalities) and 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions).