Our IOPHR representative, Hamid Gharagozloo and chair of the Iran action group at IRF gave his report at the Weekly IRF Roundtable meeting.
At a time when the regime in Iran is facing insurmountable existential challenges, both at home and abroad, such as the critical negotiations with the U.S. and a presidential election that the people of Iran are intent on boycotting, the atrocities of Khamenei’s regime against the people of Iran continues at an unprecedented and alarming rate. Any rational thinker would expect Khamenei’s regime to at least temporarily behave and try to paint a positive image of his rule to facilitate negotiations with the U.S. and the E.U. Maybe this arrogant disregard for human life and international law stems from a sense of confidence gained from the recently signed 25-year treaty with China, and that is why we see that the exact opposite happening.
From the continual killing of Baluchis and Sunnis, to the summons and arrests of Bahai’s, to the barbaric oppression of women, to the threats against the families of the 176 murdered passengers onboard the downed Ukrainian plane (done at the direct order of Khamenei) so that they will not pursue the cases of their lost loved ones in international courts, to withholding COVID-19 vaccines from the people of Iran in order to force them to participate in the sham elections, to the gradual murder of dissidents and activists such as Mohammad Nourizad and thousands like him in the dungeons of the regime through drugs and medications, to the oppression and intimidation of millions of Gonabadi Sufis to force them to abide by the wishes of the regime and help its survival, the atrocities abound.
These are just a snapshot of the crimes against humanity that are happening in Iran on a constant, daily basis, but what is particularly concerning of late is the death threat issued by a member of the Basij forces named Mansour Amiriyan against Dr. Seyed Azmayesh, the founder of the International Organisation to Preserve Human Rights (IOPHR) and a renowned Sufi master. For more than 20 years, IOPHR has been one of the few reliable sources of news and a voice of the oppressed in Iran. About a week ago, Dr. Azmayesh received a video clip of Mansour Amiriyan loading an automatic rifle while telling Dr. Azmayesh that he must declare his allegiance to the regime-approved leader of the Gonabadi Sufis, indicating that Dr. Azmayesh must submit to the regime and its wishes, or else…
As many of you know, Khamenei’s regime gradually murdered Dr. Noor-Ali Tabandeh, the former spiritual leader of the Gonabadi Sufis, over the course of a two-year house arrest by administering incorrect medications and unknown drugs to him, in order to take over the Gonabadi Sufi order.
I cannot emphasize enough the importance of establishing human rights and religious freedom as fundamental and critical components of any negotiations with this regime, and humbly ask all concerned participants to be a voice for the oppressed people of Iran by letting President Biden’s administration know about the brutal realities that Iranians face every day. The fact of the matter is that Khamenei and his regime are incapable of reform and cannot be trusted. The past 42 years have proven that one can only negotiate with this regime from a position of strength, and history has repeatedly taught us that appeasing tyrants leads to horrific consequences on a global scale.