On the forty-first anniversary of the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran (November 4), Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pointed out that the Iranian regime continues to take hostages to advance its malign agenda. He called on Iran to release wrongfully detained U.S. citizens Morad Tahbaz and Siamak and Baquer Namazi, as well as to account for the fate of FBI agent Robert Levinson who was abducted 13 years ago.
But as Secretary Pompeo declared, “These innocent people are not the only victims of the Iranian regime’s brutality – the regime’s longest suffering victims are the Iranian people, and they deserve better.”
The recent report by Javaid Rehman, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran supports Secretary Pompeo’s assessment. In comments to the UN General Assembly’s Third Committee on his report, Mr. Rehman said the human rights situation in Iran is “characterized by systematic violations of human rights and impunity.”
Citing the regime’s brutal response to last year’s anti-government protests in which hundreds of people were killed, Mr. Rehman said Iran “must conduct an independent, impartial and transparent inquiry into the violent crackdown against protests in November 2019 and January 2020, and bring human rights violators to justice.”
But the actions of the regime show that transparency and justice are of absolutely no concern.
“The use of torture and harsh sentences against those who protested; the harassment of victims calling for justice, and the lack of accountability of those responsible.”
Special Rapporteur Rehman also cited the death sentences given to protesters after forced confessions and the “alarming” prison conditions for political prisoners, including lawyers, journalists, conservationists and human rights defenders.
“A clear pattern is emerging in an attempt to silence public dissent over the social, economic and political situation in Iran.”
As Secretary Pompeo has said to Iran’s leaders, “True prosperity will only come to Iran when you cease terrorizing your people and jailing them…Treat your people with basic dignity, to which every member of mankind is entitled.”