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US will work to remove Iran from UN Commission on Status of Women


The United States will work to remove Iran from the UN Commission on the Status of Women, US Vice President Kamala Harris announced on Wednesday.

The effort to expel Iran from the 45-member intergovernmental body comes as the Iranian government has attempted to quell nationwide protests following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody. saying this country’s morality police.

“The United States believes that no nation that systematically violates the rights of women and girls should have a role in an international or United Nations body mandated to protect those same rights,” Harris said in a statement.

“Iran has demonstrated by its denial of women’s rights and its brutal repression against its own people that it is not fit to sit on this Commission; The very presence of Iran discredits the integrity of its members and the work to advance its mandate,” she said.

“That’s why the United States is announcing today its intention to work with our partners to remove Iran from the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women,” Harris said.

His statement was released just before an informal meeting of the UN Security Council, co-hosted by the United States and Albania, where US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield spoke about the intention of the United States to withdraw Iran from the Commission.

“We must condemn these brutal acts of repression and violence. And, more than that, we must back up our words with actions,” she said.

“Now is the time to act with moral clarity. Now, I’ll be honest, it won’t be easy – and change won’t happen overnight,” Thomas-Greenfield said. At the moment, the status of women in Iran is the status of women everywhere. Women are counting on us to do the right thing.

Thomas-Greenfield said that “in the coming weeks we will join forces with other Member States – with you here in this room today – who want to protect the power and integrity of the Commission”.

“And we will look for opportunities to raise this issue in every relevant UN forum,” she added.

“Today we have brought together members of the Security Council and many other nations. And we are also working closely with our partners to push for action at the Human Rights Council in Geneva and the Third Committee. While we do all of this, let’s look at the example of the brave protesters in Iran. And let’s do everything in our power to ensure that Mahsa’s death is not in vain,” Thomas-Greenfield said.

“Change in Iran should only come from inside Iran,” the ambassador said. “But that doesn’t absolve the world of the obligation to stand with the people of Iran as they protest for women, for life and for freedom.”

The special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Javaid Rehman, called on the international community to establish “an independent investigation mechanism to investigate all human rights violations that preceded and followed Amini’s death.

“It is clear that the so-called investigations into the death of Mahsa Amini have failed to meet the minimum requirements of impartiality, independence and transparency,” he told the UN meeting. .

Rehman called Amini an “unfortunate victim of state repression and brutality”, noting that she was neither the first nor the last victim of such brutality.

In an open letter this week, leaders including former first ladies Michelle Obama and Laura Bush and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called for Iran to be removed from the Commission on the Status of Women.

“Due to the Islamic Republic’s appalling record on women’s rights and in light of the regime’s continued brutal crackdown on protesters, we insist that Iran’s membership in the CSW be revoked,” they wrote. “For every day that Iran remains a member of the Commission on the Status of Women, the body loses credibility.”

The US effort to remove Iran from the body is its latest response to Amini’s death and the Iranian government’s crackdown on protesters.

Last week, the Biden administration imposed a series of new sanctions against Iranian officials implicated in this ongoing crackdown. In late September, the United States announced sanctions against Iran’s morality police following Amini’s death in its custody.

In a statement, the US Treasury Department said it was sanctioning the vice squad “for abuse and violence against Iranian women and violating the rights of Iranian peaceful protesters.”

Shortly after, amid Iranian government internet shutdowns amid widespread protests over Amini’s death, the US government took a step intended to allow tech companies to help the Iranian people access information. on line.

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