B’nai B’rith International condemns Iran’s cynical ploy before the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva to divert attention from its serious human rights abuses.In an outrageous display of distorted reality, Iran told the council on Feb. 15 that promoting and defending human rights are a national priority. History proves just the opposite.
“The Tehran regime undertakes horrendous human rights abuses against those who challenge it, as demonstrated by violent efforts to suppress protests over June’s stolen election,” said B’nai B’rith International President Dennis W. Glick. “Rather than a defender of human rights, the oppressive Iranian government takes every opportunity to quash dissenting voices.”
And it’s not just political dissenters who are targeted. The government’s pervasive denial of basic rights to women and juvenile offenders also proves its non-existent support for backing human rights protections.
The United States and some European democracies should be commended for challenging Iran’s claims during this first review of Iran’s human rights record.
“For too long, the Human Rights Council has been complicit in tolerating Iran’s extensive human rights violations,” B’nai B’rith International Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin said. “The council, which has demonstrated an intolerable myopia when it comes to some of the most flagrant abusers in the world, must not let Iran off the hook on its claims.”
Perhaps equally as egregious as its claims of promoting and defending human rights is Iran’s quest to sit on the Human Rights Council, which holds elections in May. The 47-member council is already populated with too many nations that have horrible human rights records.
The Human Rights Council must take this opportunity to apply significant pressure to the Iranian regime in an effort to stop its abuses.