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Ahmad-Reza Radan

Title: Deputy Chief of Iran’s National Police (Since 2008)

Sanctions: European Union (April 12, 2011) and United States (September 29, 2010)

On September 29, 2010, the United States designated Ahmad-Reza Radan for his involvement in human rights abuses. [1]

In April 2011, the European Union followed suit, naming Radan as an individual subject to sanctions for human rights violations. According to the Official Journal of the European Union, Radan is responsible for the torture, killings, and arrests committed by the Iranian National Police. [2]

According to the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center, Radan became known for cracking down on what he viewed as “un-Islamic” hairstyles and clothing choices, and for filming the torture of detainees. [3] According to The New York Times, Radan said that “in the interrogation of related rebels, we intend to find the link between the plotters and foreign media.”[4]

According to the United States Department of the Treasury, the Iranian government killed 37 protesters and arrested hundreds on December 27, 2009. [5] Despite this, Radan claimed that police and security forces used no lethal force on that day, according to the Tehran Times[6]

Al Arabiya quotes Radan declaring that the police are obligated to “prevent any disturbance of order in society.”[7]

In response to protests in February 2010, Radan said that the “police will not tolerate any unofficial slogan or symbol,” according to the Los Angeles Times.[8]

In May 2011, the Green Voice of Freedom reported that Radan had met with Syrian security officials and has “been providing active assistance to the Syrian regime in crushing dissent in the country.”[9]

In June 2011, The Guardian reported that Iran had deployed 70,000 police personnel across Tehran to enforce the government’s “moral security plan,” which prohibits women from wearing “loose-fitting headscarves, tight overcoats and shortened trousers” and prohibits men from getting “glamorous hairstyles and wearing a necklace.” Radan said that “The enforcement of the moral security plan was requested by the nation and it will be continued until people’s concerns are properly addressed.” [10]

These actions are similar to those that occurred in the summer of 2007, when the Iranian government targeted youth wearing western clothing.  According to the Iran Press Service, Radan declared then that western hairstyles and clothing were “perverted.” [11] The Iran Press Service also quoted Radan as saying that “social order, preventing incivilities in the society are things that are strict duties of the Police. Especially when some models of hair cuts are directly connected with perversion, disturbing public order and minds. We shall stop them and we are not afraid of wave making by foreign media.”[12]

Radan was further quoted as saying in the Iranian press July 2007, “personally, I’m very happy with hanging these rascals, these social nuisances.” [13] According to The Denver Post, Radan said that “the response to those who stand firm against the Iranian regime and its practices is execution.”[14]

<[1]“Executive Order - Blocking Property Of Certain Persons With Respect To Serious Human Rights Abuses By The Government Of Iran and Taking Certain Other Actions,” United States Department of the Treasury, September 29, 2010. (

[2]Council of the European Union, “Council Regulation (EU) No 359/2011 of 12 April 2011 Concerning Restrictive Measures Directed Against Certain Persons, Entities, and Bodies in View of the Situation in Iran.” Official Journal of the European Union, April 14, 2011, p. 7.

[3]“A Year Later: Suppression Continues in Iran,” Iran Human Rights Documentation Center, June 12, 2010, p.32. (

[4]Bill Keller, “Innocent Googling? No Such Thing in Tehran,” The New York Times, June 16, 2009. (

[5]U.S. Department of State, “Press Release: Executive Order Targets Human Rights Abuses,” September 29, 2010. (

[6]“Ahmadinejad Says Protests, ‘U.S., Israeli Scenario’,” Tehran Times, December 31, 2009. (

[7]“Iran Police to Confront “Illegal” Nov. 4 Rallies,” Al Arabiya, November 1, 2009. (

[8]“Iran: As Many as 3 Million Protesters Anticipated at Thursday Rally,” Los Angeles Times, February 8, 2010. (

[9]“Iran’s Top torturer Aiding Syrian Regime in Clampdown,” The Green Voice for Freedom, May 31, 2011. (

[10]Saeed Kamali Dehghan, “Necklace Ban for Men as Tehran’s ‘Moral Police’ Enforce Dress Code,” The Guardian (U.K.), June 14, 2011. (

[11]“Police To Start New Wave Of Crackdown On Young Boys,” Iran Press Service, July 15, 2007. (

[12]“Police To Start New Wave Of Crackdown On Young Boys,” Iran Press Service, July 15, 2007. (

[13]“Police To Start New Wave Of Crackdown On Young Boys,” Iran Press Service, July 15, 2007. (

[14]Ana Sami, “In Death, A Martyr’s Smile Foretells Victory,” The Denver Post, August 10, 2007. (