Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has recently been lecturing the United States and the West on human rights, particularly through Twitter. Recently, the Ayatollah tweeted, “Based on global statistics, US gvt is the biggest violator of #HumanRights.” The Supreme Leader added, “Besides int’l crimes, it commits crimes against its ppl. #Ferguson."
The Ayatollah talks about global statistics, but where are these numbers? His claims could actually spur a real discussion if the Iranian government and Khamenei could cite his claim that the “US govt is the biggest violator of #HumanRights.”
Nevertheless, let us take a deep look at some of the recent developments on the human rights situation in the Islamic Republic that are not unsubstantiated claims, but have been very well documented. However, these reports unfortunately have gone unnoticed by the mainstream media.
The Recent Atrocities Against the Religious Minority, the Baha’i
The Islamic Republic has ratcheted up its religious and cultural cleansing of the Baha’i community and the Baha’i faith in Iran. Last week, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) began its destruction of the Baha’i cemetery in Shiraz, Iran. The cemetery includes several buried men and women who were executed by the Iranian regime itself.
Three of the United Nations experts on human rights in Iran pointed out that “We are dismayed by reports that excavation work has resumed at the cemetery, where at least 950 members of the Bahá’í faith were buried.”
Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief Heiner Bielefeldt stated, “Cemeteries, like places of worship, are an essential part of how people exercise and manifest their right to freedom of religion or belief. Their significance goes beyond their physical presence,” adding, “attacks on cemeteries are unacceptable and are a deliberate violation of freedom of religion or belief. The Government of Iran must take urgent action.”
The persecution of the members of the Baha’i religious minority is systematic in Iran. Those who follow this faith are being discriminated against in several realms including economic, educational, cultural, and career landscapes.
According to Ahmed Shaheed, Special Rapporteur on Iran, there are currently 126 members of the Baha’i faith who are imprisoned in the Islamic Republic on simple charges such as coordinating religious gatherings and speaking up for their rights.
Khamenei should answer this question before ranting about other countries: where is the protection of religious minorities and human rights within the Islamic Republic?
Recent Executions and Public Hangings Under President Hassan Rouhani’s Rule
The rate of executions continues to rise under the rule of the so-called moderate president of the Islamic Republic. Only during the last two weeks, approximately forty-five people were hanged publicly across several cities in Iran. Some of these people were women.
For example, on September 3rd one person was publicly hanged in the city of Savadkuh, located in northern part of the Islamic Republic.
On September 1st, several thousands of people protested the public hanging of a young person in the city of Mahmoudabad.
The Iranian regime's henchmen had to stop the execution due to the risk they encountered from the protesters. According to the National Council of Resistance of Iran, Iran’s state news reported that “3000 people who roared, shouted and resorted to physical action by attacking the security cordon caused the execution to be cancelled.” However, the next day, on September 2nd, the Iranian regime increased its security forces and went ahead with publicly executing the young person in the city of Mahmoudabad, located in northern part of the Islamic Republic.
On September 1st, at least ten prisoners who protested in the Iranian regime prison were collectively executed in the Ghezel Hessar Prison in city of Karaj near Tehran. On August 24th, two prisoners were hanged in public in the city, of Sari. On August 21st and 19th, two other people were hanged in public in city of Qazvin and Khoy.
The “moderate” mullah, President Hassan Rouhani, and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei are setting a record in human rights violations. So far, approximately 1000 people have been executed since he took power a year ago. Hassan Rouhani has not raised even a minimal concern about these egregious human rights abuses and public hangings. In addition, all these executions are approved by Iran’s Islamist judiciary system which is under the control of Iran’s Supreme Leader Khamenei.
On the other hand, the public floggings, public amputation of people’s fingers, and other brutal tactics continue to rise across the Islamic Republic. Iranian people see the Iranian regime's brutality and barbarian punishments in the streets and in public. The Iranian regime and the mullahs attempt to impose fear in its population by publicly conducting amputations, flogging, executions, etc.
By lecturing the United States about human rights, Khamenei is either totally delusional, or he is smartly attempting to divert attention from the atrocities, brutality, high rate of public hangings, and persecutions of religious minorities that continue to rise under the theocratic and Islamist regime of the Ayatollah and mullahs.
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