Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Mr. President: Iran Did It, You Can too

Iran Frees Political Prisoners on Eve of President’s Visit to U.S.

TEHRAN — On the eve of a visit by Iran’s moderate president, Hassan Rouhani, to the United States, the Iranian authorities on Wednesday unexpectedly freed 11 of Iran’s most prominent political prisoners, including Nasrin Sotoudeh, a human rights lawyer.
Mr. President -- We social justice, civil liberties and other human rights advocates and activists of all stripes, whatever our particular organizational focus, are all fighting  for the same goal: to ensure the dignity of every person in the U.S. and to hold the government accountable for protecting and fulfilling  our human rights.

Yes, you can. You can honor the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.The ICCPR treaty offers a broad range of protections including the rights to vote, gender equality, organize, move and to travel, as well as freedoms from discrimination, torture and illegal detention, freedom of speech and assembly, freedom of and from religion, and many other civil and political rights. 

Yes, you can.  You can protect these rights.

Yes, you can improve relations with countries around the world by leading on human rights issues and by protecting our civil and political rights at home.

Iranian officials deny that there are any political prisoners in Iran. Yet, Iran's President has released those very political prisoners.

U.S. officials deny that there are any political prisoners in the United States, too.  What will you do?

Mr. President, before the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, 24 September, in New York City -- Yes, you can.

Yes, you can. You can free U.S. political prisoners.
Yes, you can. You can free Leonard Peltier.

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