Following the killing of hundreds of protesters by the Iranian regime, the furor accompanies possible Senate action to ban future UN visits by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, who has supported the planned killings of American citizens. Raisi arrived in New York on Monday and is expected to speak on Tuesday afternoon.
“There is no reason to allow Raisi, the ‘butcher of Iran’, who has the blood of innocent Americans, Iranians and others on his hands, to come to New York to spout his nonsense at the podium where he and other representatives of “Islamic Republic comes every year to disrespect the US and our ally, Israel, to spin the narrative and lie about Iran’s terrible human rights record and nuclear weapons ambitions,” said Lisa Daftari, managing editor of The Foreign Desk, Fox News Digital. .
The Trump administration has sanctioned Raishi for his role in the 1988 massacre of 5,000 Iranian political prisoners and the 2019 massacre of 1,500 Iranian protesters by the clerical regime.
Daftari, who has written extensively on Iran, noted that “allowing him to come to US soil legitimizes a man who has a long history of wholesale executions, financing global terrorism and, to this day, continues his rage against peaceful protesters in Iran. Why would the US allow such heinous crimes to be whitewashed to offer an invitation to a man who should be marginalized and condemned?
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Late last week, a group of Republican senators introduced legislation to pressure the Biden administration to bar Raisi from entering the United States ahead of his speech Tuesday at the UN in New York. Raisi is out to kill Americans, according to Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Ted Cruz, R-Texas.
In a press release promoting the bill to ban Raisi, Rubio said, “Raisi actively supports terrorism and wants to kill American citizens. Although I am not surprised that he wants to reunite with the many other murderers and thugs who claim that they are members of the United Nations, Raishi should not be allowed to enter the United States. Our bill will accomplish what the Biden administration seems unwilling to do: ban Raishi from entering the country and protect our national security ».
The Iranian regime was accused this year of trying to kidnap and kill Iranian-American journalist Masih Alinejad from her home in Brooklyn, New York.
Cruz noted that “Raisi would have already been barred from entering the United States for the United Nations General Assembly if President Biden and his administration had implemented existing statutes in good faith. Raisi has a history of terrorist activities, including of his defense of the assassination of President Trump and other US officials. He is also listed by the State Department as ineligible for entry into the United States because of the mass atrocities he has committed. However, the Biden administration appears determined to circumvent these restrictions ».
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A State Department spokesperson told Fox News Digital: “As a UN host country, the United States is generally required under the UN Headquarters Agreement to issue visas to representatives of UN member states to travel to the UN headquarters area. UN on official UN business’. The spokesman added, “The United States takes seriously its obligations as a UN host country under the UN Headquarters Agreement. At the same time, the Biden administration has not wavered and will not waver in protecting and defending all Americans.”
When asked if the United Nations would ban Raisi from speaking, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric told Fox News Digital, “We have no comment on a proposed bill in the U.S. legislature. The United States obviously has the right to control the its borders The US also has commitments to the UN Headquarters Agreement of 1947, which sets out the responsibilities of the US as a host country to the UN.’
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When asked about UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ view of the alleged mass killings carried out by Raisi, Dujarric said: “As a matter of principle, a UN secretary-general does not have the power to declare anyone guilty of a crime. For a competent international or national court. That said, the Secretary-General has publicly and privately expressed concern about the human rights situation in Iran, particularly with regard to women and girls.”
The New York-based Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) reportedly invited Raisi to speak, sparking widespread outrage among Iranian-Americans and human rights activists. CFR did not respond to multiple inquiries from Fox News Digital Press about Raisi’s reported appearance.
When asked about the reported CFR event with Raisi, a State Department spokesman referred Fox News Digital to comments made by Matthew Miller, a spokesman for the US State Department, last week.
Miller said, “With respect to the president of Iran who is hosted in a [think tank] in New York, I won’t talk about that specifically. It is obviously an independent organization that can make its own decisions. But I would say that when an organization hosts a figure like that with a long history of spreading inaccuracies and saying the things that he … makes claims that are not accurate, we would just urge them to watch very carefully what he says, make sure that they are held accountable , make sure their members have full access to true, accurate information. And I would expect them to do that.”
Iranian-American organizations and groups plan to demonstrate against Raishi on Tuesday outside the UN headquarters in Manhattan.
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Lawdan Bazargan, the director of the California-based Alliance Against Apologists for the Islamic Regime of Iran (AARIA), will travel to New York to protest against Raisi. He is leading a campaign to oust the Iranian regime’s former ambassador to the UN, Mohammad Jafar Mahallati, from his teaching position at Oberlin College for his alleged role in covering up the 1988 massacre at the world body.
Soona Samsami, the US representative for the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), whose organization has planned a large protest on Tuesday, told Fox New Digital, “At a time when the Iranian people are taking courage in streets, demanding the overthrow of the ruling theocratic regime, is a shame for [the] The United Nations to offer its platform to Ebrahim Raisi, whose transgressions are marked by his role in the notorious ‘death commission’, which executed 30,000 political prisoners in 1988 following a fatwa targeting supporters of the main Iranian opposition, the MEK.”
MEK is short for Mojahedin-e-Khalq, the main member of the NCRI.
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Shamsami said “the UN should move to prosecute Raishi and other regime leaders for their gross human rights violations.” He added that Raisi is responsible for the murders of 750 Iranians who took to the streets to protest against the killing of 22-year-old Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini last September.
Amini died in a Tehran hospital on September 16, 2022, after she was allegedly tortured by Iranian security forces for not properly covering her hair with a hijab.
Raisi’s speech at the United Nations coincides with his regime receiving a $6 billion payment in sanctions from Biden on Monday in exchange for five American hostages. Biden has faced criticism for abandoning American residents who are considered US citizens under the Levinson Act.
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The Iranian regime kidnapped California legal resident and dissident journalist Jamshid (Jimmy) Sharmahd in the United Arab Emirates and sentenced him to death. Jamshid’s daughter, Gazelle, sent Fox News Digital a statement on Monday that published in Xformerly known as Twitter.
He wrote to the Biden administration in X: “How do you ensure that my father is safe and alive and not murdered now? Instead of wasting your time on national television trying to convince us that our hostages will use the money for humanitarian causes[s] explain us how and when you will bring Jimmy Sharmahd back home? The last American patriot left behind in a hostage rescue in 2015 was Bob Levinson, and we all know it cost him his life.”