Middle East

World Leaders Sign Letter To Stop Execution Of Prisoners In Iran

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Guest post by Jalal Arani

You can read the letter below:

107 Former World Leaders Demand Accountability and Urgent Action to Stop Execution of Protesters in Iran

In a powerful open letter addressed to world leaders, a group of former world leaders representing various nations called for immediate action to halt the execution of detained protesters in Iran. The letter, signed by 107 distinguished former heads of state or government, highlights the urgent need to support the pro-democracy movement and hold the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran accountable for their crimes against humanity.

The open letter, sent to President Joe Biden, President Charles Michel, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, states: “We write to request that your nations set up a joint accountability mechanism for rapid collective action to help halt the execution of detained protesters in Iran.”

The letter emphasizes the bravery of the Iranian protesters who have taken to the streets to demand an end to political oppression. It states, “The brave young men and women of Iran who are continuing to courageously take to the streets demanding an end to political oppression deserve our full support and admiration.”

The former world leaders express their deep concern over the escalating violence perpetrated by the Iranian authorities against protesters. The letter states, “Since popular protests began in Iran following the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, the authorities have murdered as many as 700 protesters, including dozens of children, on the streets or in prison.”

The recent executions of protesters by the Iranian regime have further intensified the call for urgent action. The letter highlights the case of Mohsen Shekari, stating, “Mohsen Shekari was executed on December 8, less than three weeks after he was convicted and sentenced to death for taking part in the protests.” Another case mentioned is that of Majidreza Rahnavard, who was publicly hanged in Mashhad on December 12. The letter describes these executions as attempts by the authorities to intimidate the Iranian population and suppress the popular uprising against the clerical dictatorship.

The open letter draws attention to the long history of human rights violations in Iran and the lack of accountability. It states, “Decades of apparent silence and inaction by the international community have helped fuel a culture of impunity in Iran.” The letter points out that tens of thousands of dissident protesters and political prisoners have been extrajudicially executed since the 1980s. Referring to the 1988 massacre, it states, “As many as 30,000 political prisoners, mostly MEK members, were extra-legally executed or forcibly disappeared.”

While acknowledging the recently commissioned fact-finding mission by the UN Human Rights Council, the former world leaders stressed the need for urgent action. The letter states, “While we welcome the fact-finding mission recently commissioned by the UN Human Rights Council in relation to the crackdown on the ongoing protests, we note that the mission has a more long-term agenda, whereas it is critical to take urgent action now to stop the unlawful use of the death penalty against protesters.”

The letter puts forth specific recommendations for immediate action. It calls for the joint mechanism of world leaders to identify and impose sanctions on the masterminds and perpetrators of the crackdown on protesters. The former world leaders also urge countries to consider imposing targeted economic sanctions, specifically blacklisting the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and its affiliated entities that are leading the crackdown.

In addition, the open letter requests that nations downgrade diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran. It states, “Finally, we request that, where applicable, your nations downgrade diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran, including by withdrawing your ambassadors and likewise expelling the representatives of what is in fact a murderous government.”

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The open letter concludes with the sincere hope that the world’s leading democratic nations will stand in solidarity with the Iranian people and take decisive action to prevent further human rights violations. The letter emphasizes, “We urge you to hold the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran to account for committing crimes against humanity, for acts including the killing of children and the public hanging of protesters, and to use all internationally available means to bring them to justice.”

The former world leaders believe that by implementing these recommendations, world leaders can effectively support the pro-democracy movement in Iran and contribute to the restoration of human rights and justice. The letter concludes, “Today, as brave young Iranians continue their defiant protests to end decades of tyranny, it is imperative that the world’s leading democratic nations act urgently to prevent the Iranian authorities from quelling the ongoing protests through the use of the death penalty in contravention of international law.”

The joint accountability mechanism, targeted economic sanctions, and the downgrading of diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran are seen as critical steps in promoting accountability and discouraging further human rights abuses. The former world leaders firmly believe that swift action is necessary to protect the lives and rights of the courageous Iranian protesters and to stand up against the culture of impunity that has persisted for far too long.

In the face of continued oppression and violence, the open letter serves as a powerful call to world leaders to prioritize human rightsIn the face of continued oppression and violence, the open letter serves as a powerful call to world leaders to prioritize human rights, condemn the Iranian regime’s actions, and take immediate action to halt the execution of protesters. The signatories of the letter, united in their commitment to justice and democracy, urge world leaders to join forces in this critical endeavor.

—————- Links ———————-Signatories Of Open Letter To World Leaders

Text of the Open Letter
————— Bio ———————–
Jalal Arani is a Muslim UK-based Iran Analyst and Researcher, with extensive experience in Iranian politics and the Middle East. He offers insightful analysis of the complex issues facing Iran today. He is an active member of the Iranian opposition diaspora and well-connected to the opposition leaders in the UK and Europe.

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