Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in an address to the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva that was otherwise devoted to Libya, said the U.N. agency should investigate rights abuses in Iran. She called for an end to what she termed an “organized intimidation campaign” against Iranian dissidents.
“Iran, for example, has consistently pursued policies of violence abroad, and tyranny at home. In Tehran, security forces have beaten, detained, and in several recent cases killed peaceful protesters, even as Iran’s president has made a show of denouncing the violence in Libya.”
Clinton cited sanctions the Obama administration imposed last week on key Iranian officials linked to human rights abuses, and said the United States is proud to be co-sponsoring with Sweden a proposal that the U.N. Rights Council name a special investigator for Iran.
She said Iranian human rights advocates are demanding such a move to raise pressure on the Tehran government, and said it is a “seminal moment” for the council and a test of its members’ ability to work together to advance its stated goals.
“Indeed every member of this council should ask him or herself a simple question. Why do people have the right to live free from fear in Tripoli, but not Tehran? The denial of human dignity in Iran is an outrage that deserves the condemnation of all who speak of freedom and justice.”