OKLAHOMA CITY, OK– Senators James Lankford (R-OK), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Jim Risch (R-ID), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), and Chris Coons (D-DE) were joined by 28 Senate colleagues in reintroducing a bipartisan resolution reaffirming the United States’ support for the Iranian citizens who have taken to the streets in peaceful protest and condemning Iranian security forces for human rights abuses.
In addition to calling on the international community to continue to publicly highlight and condemn the Iranian regime’s crackdown since protests began more than five months ago, the resolution urges the Biden administration to strengthen international efforts to impose additional sanctions on officials and entities responsible for the violent suppression of demonstrations. The resolution also underscores the importance of the US government and the private sector providing additional support for access to digital communications and internet freedom in Iran so that Iranian citizens have the tools necessary to communicate with the world and each other.
“We stand with the courageous Iranian people who are, at this moment, risking their lives to stand up for their freedom and the right to live their faith,” said Lankford. “The Senate should send a loud and clear message that we support the basic human rights of all people around the world, including the oppressed people of Iran living under a repressive regime.”
“I am proud to be joined by my colleagues in reintroducing this bipartisan resolution commending the bravery of these Iranian protesters who have stood their ground against the Iranian regime for more than 130 days and counting,” Menendez said. “This regime, which is now callously executing protesters without due process, has shown no sign whatsoever it intends to deescalate its brutal crackdown. Standing shoulder-to-shoulder with protesters keeping the world’s focus on Tehran’s repression, we cannot become desensitized or forget these courageous Iranians’ sacrifices. Recent steps taken by the international community to impose coordinated sanctions, isolate Iran from international fora, and provide Iranians with the technology they need to circumvent the regime’s censorship are exactly the kind of actions this resolution supports.”
“In the wake of the death of Mahsa Amini, the Iranian people have bravely protested the regime’s brutality and demonstrated their desire for a more peaceful and free Iran,” said Risch. “In addition to addressing Iran’s dangerous collusions with Russia, the Biden Administration should step up efforts on helping to end the regime’s systematic persecution of women and holding human rights violators in Iran to account.”
“My colleagues and I, in a bipartisan manner, stand in solidarity with the men and women of Iran who are fighting for freedom after years of oppression. They have displayed tremendous bravery at great risk to their personal safety,” said Blackburn. “We also strongly urge the Biden administration to impose additional human rights sanctions on the Iranian government and prioritize efforts to ensure unrestricted internet access in Iran. It’s important that we send Iran and the rest of the world a clear message: the United States is watching and will not tolerate this egregious suppression of freedom.”
“As co-Chair of the Senate Human Rights Caucus, I am proud to join my colleagues to introduce a resolution supporting the Iranian people as they call for change,” said Coons. “The US stands wholly behind the thousands of brave protestors who are risking their lives to advocate for human rights, women’s rights, and democratic freedoms.”
Joining the resolution were Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Bob Casey Jr. (D-PA), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), John Cornyn (R-TX), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), John Hoeven (R-ND), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Angus King (I-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Rick Scott (R-FL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD).
A concurrent resolution led by Congresswoman Claudia Tenney (R-NY), House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), and Congressman Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) was passed by the House of Representatives last week.