WASHINGTON – Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) today were joined by Senators Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) in introducing a Senate resolution reaffirming the United States’ support for the Iranian citizens who have taken to the streets in peaceful protest for their fundamental human rights, and condemning the Iranian security forces for their violent response. An identical resolution was introduced in the House of Representatives by Representatives Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.), Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.), and Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
The resolution specifically calls for the international community to speak out against the Iranian regime’s human rights violations, and urges continued efforts to hold those violators accountable including through additional coordinated sanctions. With reports of the Iranian regime blocking internet access out of fear that its citizens will continue shining a light on these significant protests, the senators also stressed the importance for the United States government and the broader international community to provide additional support for access to digital communications and internet freedom in Iran.
“I am proud to be joined by my colleagues in introducing this important resolution commemorating Mahsa Amini and honoring the brave women and men of Iran giving voice to their rejection of this violent, oppressive and misogynistic regime,” Chairman Menendez said. “Whether through the simple, brave act of removing a hijab, standing in solidarity with those who do, or documenting the regime’s crimes against protestors and telling their story to the world despite increasing violence and communications blackouts, these expressions reflect an honest truth and deeply-held desperation we shouldn’t ignore. Iranians must know that we in the U.S. Congress, across the United States and around the world see and honor their bravery and share in their hope for a free Iran that is at peace with its neighbors as well as its own people.”
“The courageous women across Iran who are protesting the human rights abuses of the Iranian regime are true heroes and should be honored. The horrific murder of Mahsa Amini for simply not wearing a head covering, the violence of the security forces as they do everything in their power to silence those who dare to speak out, and the blacking out of internet and social media across Iran should be a wake-up call to the international community,” said Senator Blackburn. “The Biden Administration must immediately impose additional human rights sanctions on those responsible for the Iranian regime’s brutal crackdown, and prioritize efforts to ensure unrestricted internet access in Iran. My Congressional colleagues and I – in a bipartisan, bicameral manner – stand in solidarity with the women of Iran who are courageously fighting for freedom after years of tyranny and abuse.”
“Iranian women are fighting for their freedom,” said Dr. Cassidy. “A 22-year-old Mahsa Amini was killed by the Iranian regime’s morality police for refusing to wear a head covering. We must stand with the women of Iran as they fight for their rights.”
“I’m proud to join my colleagues in solidarity with the heroic women of Iran who are standing against the oppressive Iranian regime's human rights abuses,” said Senator Rosen. “The international community must support protestors in Iran and immediately impose human rights sanctions on Iranian government officials who are repressing the protests.”
“The people of Iran are calling for an end to the regime and putting their lives at great and immediate risk to fight for their freedom and future. They deserve our support and our admiration. The United States should hold accountable the Ayatollah and the rest of the regime for having unleashed barbaric violence against the protesters, and should heed the call of those protesters to completely shun and isolate the regime,” Senator Cruz said.
“Iranian women are fighting for freedom and equal rights as they honor Mahsa Amini’s legacy through their protests and resolve. I commend the courage of every man and woman fighting for basic human rights in Iran and speaking out against the violent Iranian regime,” said Senator Cramer.
“Mahsa’s killing was a tragedy; I hope it is also a turning point. The bravery of Iranians, particularly women, fighting for freedom and dignity is an inspiration and the United States must lead the world in supporting their peaceful struggle while condemning their government’s repression,” Rep. Malinowski said.
“The regime in Iran is once again violently cracking down on the rights of its citizens. It is the policy of the United States to stand with the Iranian people, who are the longest-suffering victims of this regime’s brutality. Now, as the Iranian people are demanding justice for Mahsa and countless others like her, the United States must reaffirm our commitment to democracy by standing with the Iranian people. Today, with bipartisan, bicameral support, Congress is standing strong alongside the Iranian people,” Rep. Tenney said.
“As Tehran continues to violently crackdown on its own citizens simply for demanding basic human rights, we must make clear it cannot be business as usual with the Iranian regime. We must do all we can to support the Iranian people’s right to self determination and ensure those responsible for the violent suppression of peaceful protests are held to account,” said Rep. McCaul.
A copy of the resolution can be found HERE.