Iranians who took to the streets this summer to protest electoral fraud failed to win a new election. But they nevertheless returned concerns about the Islamic republic’s human rights record to the international stage.
On June 20, U.S. President Barack Obama declared: “The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights.”
Today, the debates sparked by the summer unrest remain fierce. Inside Iran, politicians call for an investigation into torture and murder at the Kahrizak detention center. Meanwhile, within the Iranian parliament, President Mahmud Ahmadinejad’s supporters call for new prosecutions of alleged “velvet revolution” plotters.