Iran’s clerical regime cut off a man’s fingers for alleged theft in a prison in the northern province of Mazandaran, sparking outrage over the appalling punishment from Amnesty International.Saleh Higazi, Amnesty International’s deputy Middle East and North Africa director, said on Thursday: “Premeditated maiming and mutilation of individuals is not justice. It is a harrowing assault against human dignity. It is shameful that the authorities would attempt to present this punishment as anything other than what it is: an abhorrent form of torture.”Higazi added that “By carrying out this unspeakably cruel punishment, the Iranian authorities have committed torture which is a crime under international law. As a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and also under customary international law, Iran is legally obliged to forbid torture in all circumstances and without exception.“Reforms to Iran’s penal code that would put an end to this outrageous practice are long overdue. Iranian parliamentarians must immediately undertake reforms to abolish all forms of corporal punishment and move towards a criminal justice system that treats prisoners humanely and focuses on rehabilitation.”According to Amnesty, the Mazandaran Justice Department claimed that the amputation of the man’s hand was part of “the Justice Department’s policy to crackdown, severely and without hesitation, on those who disrupt public order and security and steal public funds.”The department said the public welcomes and expects such punishments.Amnesty said in a statement that “The Iranian regulatory code for implementation of corporal punishments such as amputation requires the presence of a physician for the assessment and enforcement of the sentence. This is in direct violation of ethical guidelines and international human rights law, which expressly prohibit health providers’ involvement in torture and other ill-treatment.”The Islamic Republic of Iran’s judicial system is based on a radical interpretation of Sharia Law. In 2018, Iran’s judiciary amputated the hand of a 34-year-old man who was convicted of stealing sheep.In June, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif cited “moral principles” when asked why Iran executes gays for their sexual orientation. Zarif defended his country’s executions of homosexuals in the presence of German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who remained silent during Zarif’s tirade against gays. Iran’s regime has executed between 4,000-6,000 gays and lesbians since the country’s 1979 Islamic revolution, according to a 2008 British WikiLeaks cable.