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Iran chief judge says no detention without formal charges

[JURIST] Iranian judiciary chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Shahroudi has issued a decree barring judges from ordering the detention of suspects without the filing of formal charges, Iranian media reported Wednesday. Currently, the Iranian Constitution [text] allows suspects to be held for up to 24 hours without charges. The decree also calls on judicial institutions to refrain from summoning people or granting bail before formal charges are pressed. It is not clear what effect Shahroudi's order will have as the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and National Security [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] rarely confers with judges before detaining suspects.

Last month, Shahroudi issued a ban [JURIST report] against all public executions not specially permitted by the head of the judiciary. Iran [JURIST news archive] has faced increasing international criticism from human rights advocates for its execution methods, including the use of stoning [JURIST reports]. The New York Times has more. IRNA has local coverage.

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