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Demand Human Rights Before Shaking Hands With Iran

U.S. should judge Iranian President Rouhani on his deeds, not just words.

by
Paula Bolyard

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September 29, 2013 - 3:00 pm
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From Mohabat News, Karaj, Iran – August 27, 2013:

Security authorities arrested three Christians, two of whom are Farsi-speaking, in an arbitrary move without mentioning any charges for their arrest. The unreasonable arrest of these Christian men and an increase in condemnation of Christians by the Iranian judicial authorities all point to a deteriorating situation for the Iranian Christian community. Ebrahim Firouzi and Sevada Aghasar went to visit Masoud Mirzaei in his office in an insurance company in Karaj, when plain-clothes security authorities raided the office and arrested all three Christians present.The arrested Christians are, Masoud Mirzaei, resident of Karaj, Sevada Aghasar, Armenian resident of Tehran, and Ebrahim Firouzi who was arrested again after being sentenced in the Revolutionary Court. The authorities then transferred them to an unknown location. Their location is still unknown at the time of writing this article and no indication has been given with regards to their charges for this arrest.

  • International Christian Concern (ICC): They are “alarmed by the latest series of events that continue a pattern of egregious violations of fundamental rights and freedoms in Iran.”
  • Peresecution.org: “There has not been any improvement in the months since the election of President Hassan Rouhani.”
  • Todd Daniels, ICC Regional Manager for the Middle East: “Iran continues to engage in a pattern of systematic abuse of the basic and fundamental rights of both its own citizens, and in the case of Saeed Abedini, an American citizen.

Thanks to dedicated groups like the American Center for Law and Justice and some at Fox News, many Americans are aware of the plight of Saeed Abedini, an American pastor imprisoned in Iran since 2012 for, essentially, refusing to renounce his faith in Christianity. Pastor Abedini’s imprisonment (as well as the imprisonment of two other Americans) has drawn the attention of Secretary of State John Kerry; the topic even came up in President Obama’s phone conversation with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani this week.

But as we debate the wisdom of extending the hand of friendship to Iran, it’s important to be aware that human rights abuses occur there on a daily basis with no real signs of improvement since the June election.

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I'm not too interested in small, cosmetic and (what would certainly be) temporary changes regarding treatment of minorities in Iran (although I pray for their well being). If we wish to speak of domestic changes which will build trust, let Iran allow a free press and free elections. Of course the Khomeini-ist regime will never allow such measures.

The Khomeini-ists are an aggressive terrorist regime. Their acquisition of nuclear weapons will mark a watershed in history and the complete reversal of W's (poorly executed) policy of "keeping the world's most dangerous weapons out of the hands of the world's most dangerous regimes". That moment will mark the start of a new age of capricious terrorist and gangster regimes and groups acquiring a range of nuclear and biological weapons. The prospect makes me fear for my children's future.

The time for handshakes was 20 years ago.

47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) predates Bushes administration by about 30 years, W just supported the idea because it was already well-established US policy, so don't blame Bush.

Iran is, in fact, fact an NPT signatory, but is in non-compliance and has been since at least the Clinton administration. Several states, including Israel, India, and Pakistan never signed the treaty, and North Korea, an early signatory, has withdrawn from the NPT.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
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