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  • “Iran today is a prison”

    It is high time the United States and Europe confronted Iran about its history of human rights abuses committed against its own people. Iran is a problem for the world on so many levels: as a nightmare nuclear power, as a sponsor of international terrorism, a nuclear proliferator and a threat to regional stability in the Middle East. But what has often been missing in the international hand-wringing sessions vis-à-vis Iran is the toll the Tehran regime is taking on its own people. Stating that we will deal with whoever is in power is simply not good enough when it comes to certain kinds of regimes. It leaves the Iranian people with the impression that we simple don’t care – and just as bad, it leaves the regime with the feeling that it can act with impunity against its own population.

    In that context, it is important that Washington and the EU have finally pushed the issue of Iran’s human rights record to come up before the U.N. Human Rights Council. On Tuesday, Iran was denounced in Geneva for its bloody crackdowns following the peaceful protests that followed the contested Iranian election on June 12, one year ago Saturday. The accusations were leveled as the U.N. Security Council voted to impose additional – though not very stringent – new sanctions on Iran.

    It is high time, the world focused on what is going on inside Iran. According to Iranian Radio Free Europe journalist Glonaz Esfandiari, speaking at the Heritage Foundation on June 9th, “Iran today is a prison.”

    The human rights situation, which was bad before last year’s stolen presidential election, has become even more dire, and Iranian dissidents and human rights activists are fleeing the country for fear of the brutal treatment they receive at the hands of interrogators, who use torture and rape as common techniques. The political opposition, the Green Movement, has gone underground, though as Esfandiari made very clear, the Green Movement has not disappeared. In fact, she said, the harsher the repression, the stronger the determination among the opposition in the drive for political freedom.

    In Geneva, U.S. Ambassador Eileen Chamberlain Donahoe stated that the situation in Iran was one of “grave concern.” Since last June, by the U.S. government’s count, some 250 people have been arrested, prosecuted and convicted for participating in post-election protests. Fifty among them are still serving terms. According to Amnesty International, the number people arrested in Iran since the June election is closer of 5,000.

    By the U.S. government’s count at least 35 journalists are currently imprisoned in Iran because of their efforts to report on political activity since the election. This will add to Iran’s status as the country with the most journalists in jail, beating out Cuban and North Korea. Iranian authorities block Internet sites of human rights groups and independent media. Indeed, Iran since last June has created the Iranian Cyber Army (ICA) whose purpose it is to patrol the Internet looking for dissent and human rights activity. Human rights defenders are routinely targeted by the Iranian authorities.

    In Geneva, the Iranian reprehensive did not respond directly to these serious charges, but instead attacked the EU the United States.

    The Iranian people today live under a regime of terror, which will continue until they are allowed their political and human rights to choose the government they want – and not the one the Mullahs have foisted upon them. Furthermore, a truly democratic Iran would be far lass of a threat to international stability and security. Intensified focus on the human right situation in Iran therefore should be part and parcel of a strategy towards liberty for Iranians and peace for their neighbors.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    11 Responses to “Iran today is a prison”

    1. danny roberts says:

      I'd love to see another Country stand up to that rogue regime, remind those medival ass holes that this is the 21st century and tell them to sit down and shut up or we'll just blow your country up, go in there with nukes, and keep our kids home so we could all watch them learn a lesson about the real world thats tired of the're stupid threats, and just put Iranians on the endangered species list! Screw those ignorant bastards once and for all. It should happen soon I hope.

    2. Danny says:

      So is the Gulf Coast of the US. The oil spill has left those people with no escape, little if any opportunity, and dependent on handouts from BP and the rest of taxpayers.

      Eventually we will have a massive number of idle folks along the Gulf Coast living off welfare for years until they can return to harvesting and processsing the Gulf seafoods and servicing tourists. The handouts will not be as much as their income before they lost their livelihood. Breaking and entering, robbing, stealing, drug production, drug use and addiction, gangs, fighting and killing, all these will increase rapidly.

      The Federal Government needs to build a massive prison now near the Gulf Coast to accommodate the hundreds of thousands of criminals that will.

      In this prison there will be no escape, little opportunity, and living off taxpayers. BP will not pay to prevent this rapid rise in crime to come from the oil spill. You can bet on that.

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    4. Bill, Katy, TX USA says:

      Do you really feel that bringing this before the UN Human Rights Group is going to do any good? You can't really believe the UN has any altruistic basis. Look who are members of the Human Rights Group.

      Please don't attribute attributes to a group that doesn't have many. Perhaps you really need to wake up and smell the coffee.

    5. Larry Labit, LaCombe says:

      If you don't want to print my comments, what is my name still doing in the boxes, or do you intend to turn it into the BARRACK HUSSAIN OBAMA REGEIME

    6. SEYED ALI SADJADI says:

      Thanks very much to Ms. Helle Dale. I write this comment from Iran, Tehran. Yes, we are really living in the prison inside Iran with no effective accessibility to the world. Now it is for 4 years that I am operating my volunteering activity as a blogger in Iran, but without having any freedom to do my job free of the threats of the regime. But I have a dream. I can see the day when we will celebrate our freedom inside Iran after 2011. I will survive until that day to see my dream come into reality. On that day I will never forget the governments, such as president Bush's government, who were supporting us in our path to free society.

      Thanks to all American qualified leaderships who were in the right direction of the history.

    7. sara,iran says:

      we irainian are able enogh to solve our prblems and be sure that we dont need your help .we know that there is nothing worse than America,s interference

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