November 29, 2022
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US wants UN to focus on Iran protests

Next week, the United States will shine a UN spotlight on protests in Iran over the death of a young woman in police custody and seek ways to promote independent and credible investigations into human rights abuses in Iran.

The United States and Albania will hold an informal UN Security Council meeting on Wednesday, according to a memo detailing the event seen by Reuters. Iranian Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi and Iranian actress and activist Nazanin Boniadi are expected to attend.

“The meeting highlights the continuing oppression of women and girls and members of religious and ethnic minority groups in Iran,” the statement said. “It will identify opportunities to promote credible and independent investigations into the Iranian government’s human rights violations and abuses.”

Javaid Rehman, the UN’s independent investigator on human rights in Iran, is also expected to address the meeting, which is expected to be attended by other UN member states and human rights groups.

Iran has been rocked by protests since the death of 22-year-old Kurdish youth Mahza Amini in police custody last month. The unrest turned into a popular uprising by Iranians from all strata of society, one of the boldest challenges to the clerical leadership since the 1979 revolution.

Iran blamed its foreign adversaries and agents for the unrest.

“The meeting highlights the illegal use of force against protesters and the Iranian regime’s persecution of human rights defenders and dissidents abroad to abduct or kill them in violation of international law,” the memo said.

Human rights groups have reported that at least 250 protesters have been killed and thousands arrested across the country. Women have played an important role in the protests by removing veils and burning them. The deaths of several teenage girls, who were allegedly killed during the protests, fueled further anger.

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