WASHINGTON – Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), were joined today by nine of their Senate colleagues in announcing Committee approval of their 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.
“Nearly three months since the brutal detention, beating, and murder of Mahsa Amini, the courage and defiance the Iranian people continue to display in the face of the regime’s brutality has served as an extraordinary example for all of us and everyone around the world who believes all people deserve a say in their livelihoods and way of life,” Chairman Menendez said. “It is my hope that Congressional approval of this bipartisan, bicameral resolution will help amplify the voices of the hundreds of thousands of women and men of Iran who are protesting against the brutality of one of the world’s most repressive regimes. As Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I am committed to keep our Committee’s spotlight on the Iranian regime’s crackdowns, shutdowns, and deflections in response to the demands of the Iranian people, and to call on our partners in the international community to stand with the people of Iran.”
“Many brave Iranians fighting for their basic human rights are brutally murdered or taken to prison, where they endure harrowing torture until they are executed,” said Senator Blackburn. “While the Iranian regime announced they abolished their ‘Morality Police,’ this is only a façade to distract us from what the protesters really want – to free Iran of the oppression altogether. The United States must stand by them until they secure victory.”
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 to muffle the 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.
Joining Senators Menendez and Blackburn were Senators Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), and Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.).
“Iranians are struggling 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. Passing this resolution shows our commitment to the brave Iranian people as they fight for their rights.
“The people of Iran who have taken to the streets to peacefully protest the Iranian regime’s human rights abuses have shown us their resilience, courage, and strength,” said Senator Rosen. “I will continue working with my colleagues in Congress to support the people of Iran and hold the Iranian regime accountable for their human rights violations and acts of repression.”
“Every day, we learn more about the Iranian regime and the lengths they will go to retain power and control. The Iranian people’s fight for equal rights and freedom has been heard around the world as they push back against violent security forces. The bravery of the Iranian citizens cannot be overstated, and we stand with them in their peaceful protests against their tyrannical government,” said Senator Cramer.
“I commend the people of Iran who are standing up against an oppressive, corrupt regime,” said Senator Cardin. “Iran’s murderous crackdown on peaceful protesters deserves universal condemnation. We must continue to demonstrate our support to those risking their safety to call for freedom and equality.”
“I proudly stand with the people of Iran as they call for freedom from oppression. In the face of the Iranian regime’s theocratic brutality, the courage and resolve of the Iranian people is inspiring. We must continue to offer them encouragement, both diplomatically and through public statements of support while holding the regime accountable for their abuses,” said Senator Young.
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. Find a copy HERE.