Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi addressed the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) with talks of “justice” and “democracy” as protests outside the UN and inside Iran itself demand the end of a regime that says many a citizen who does not represent their country.
As protests continue in Iran, Raisi claimed that Iran continues to fight injustice.
“All the hopes and aspirations of humanity are built on justice, and they have the ability to create such a framework of all-inclusive justice, which means the elimination of injustice,” Raisi said. “We are defenders of the fight against injustice of all kinds, against humanity, against spirituality, against the Almighty, against the people of the world.”
Protests have broken out across Iran following the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian, who was arrested by the morality police for not wearing her hijab (headscarf). Police rushed Amini to hospital shortly after she fell into a coma during her detention, claiming she had collapsed. But her family said they saw evidence of beatings.
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Amini died three days later, and the police deny that Amini was killed.
But her death sparked protests across Tehran, with hundreds protesting at Amini’s funeral, and other protests starting over the next two days. Iranian officials allegedly cut phone internet service and shut down social media, including Facebook, in an attempt to keep the protests under control.
At least five protesters died as police tried to clear the streets.
Raisi, instead of addressing the crisis in his country, attended the 77th General Assembly despite calls from critics and survivors of the 1988 “death commission” for the US to deny the Iranian president a visa to enter the country. He commented on the “progress” Iran has made, using its platform to air some grievances against other countries.
“It was the Islamic Revolution in Iran that started the movement of the great nation of Iran to seek its own place in the world, and for many years, we faced foreign plots such as coup d’etats, oppressive sanctions, as well with hegemonic interventions,” Raisi said. “None of the success of the Iranian nation has been acceptable to the great powers since the time of the first president of the Islamic Revolution of Iran.”
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But many Iranian citizens do not accept that the current regime has much “success” to speak of. Protesters in Dag Hammarskjold Park across the street from the United Nations told Fox News Digital Raisi had no right to address the General Assembly because he does not represent the people. And Raisi was allegedly involved in the death commission, which could have killed as many as 30,000 dissidents and prisoners.
Survivors of the commission on Tuesday filled the park with photos of 2,000 of those victims and told Fox News Digital they saw Raisi and directly blamed him for the deaths of their family and friends.
A protester said on Wednesday that everyone in Iran knows “someone” who was a victim of the regime.
“Raisi is not the president of the Iranian people, and he is a mass murderer,” said Raha, an Iranian woman born in the Netherlands who lives in the US. “He is responsible for the slaughter of 30,000 political prisoners … and, again, he proved how terrible and terrible he can be when, in 2019, he crushed national protests in Iran.”
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Raha said that despite what Raisi said, Iran does not stand for justice.
Haisi, a student who moved to the US with her family, talked about the trouble her family was in and the terrible incident she had at the age of 13 when she was almost arrested for breaking the law hijab.
“I was on the streets, and I wasn’t wearing my hijab properly, so one of the women came out of the vans and took my hand and was pulling me towards the van, and finally I resolved it and things … But this is a very good thing. a common event that happens in Iran,” said Haisi. “My friends and I were always afraid of being caught.”
But instead of addressing these problems, Raisi spent large stretches of his speech deflecting and arguing that other nations need to address their own human rights issues before raising issues with Iran. He cited the dark history of Canada’s residential schools and the deaths of hundreds of First Nation children and the conflict between Israel and Palestine as examples of problems that world powers are “running away from.”
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“Of course, the implementation of justice and fairness is challenging and difficult, and perhaps it is because many of those who claim to be on the side of peace, they run away from the responsibility of peace,” Raisi said. “So we say to them: Since you don’t want to carry the burden on your shoulders, aren’t you worthy of carrying the burden of the fight against oppression?”
Foreign Desk editor Lisa Daftari said it is “not surprising” to see Raisi trying to blame the United States and its allies for allegedly “supporting terrorism.”
“For someone nicknamed the ‘Butcher of Tehran’ to travel to New York and make such allegations while the US and European delegations were listening and listening is a true reflection of how bold Iran’s rogue regime,” Daftari told Fox News Digital . “This is a man with the innocent blood of his own people on his hands, and yet he stands at the podium spewing lies about how he believes in human rights for all.”
Daftari noted that Raisi did not advocate for his own people at all, but the Palestinian people, who he said were victims of Israeli “tyranny”.
“Outside the doors of the UN, something very different was going on,” Daftari said. “Protesters from across the country traveled to New York to protest Raisi’s visit and to try to show reporters and other passers-by that the Iranian regime’s brutal crimes, such as the murder of a girl 22 years old for showing her hair. to forget instead of some diplomatic speech made within the UN”
Behnam Ben Taleblu, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD), told Fox News Digital that the administration missed an opportunity by allowing Raisi to come to the US.
“The failure to deny Raisi’s visa, especially after the brutal killing of Mahsa Amini, was a missed opportunity for the Biden administration to put its money where its mouth is on Iran and human rights,” Taleblu said.