Nikki Haley wasted no time kicking off 2018 with a strong message to the world about Iran, firing off a not-so-subtle jab at former President Obama in the process.
The US Ambassador to the United Nations urged that “we must not be silent” in the face of protests that have broken out in Iran, and that nations must not repeat “the mistake” of 2009 when the Obama administration and others failed to support Iranians who rose up in anger against their government.
“We must not be silent,” Haley told the U.N. Tuesday. “The people of Iran are crying out for freedom. All freedom loving people must stand with their cause. The international community made the mistake of failing to do that in 2009. We must not make that mistake again.”
Demonstrations erupted in Iran last week as frustrated citizens took to the streets in Mashad and then other cities to protest the economic stagnation and oppressive theocracy that has gripped the country despite the inflow of funds due to Obama’s Iran nuclear deal.
“Dozens have already been killed,” Haley noted, adding that protests are in “virtually in every city in Iran” and that they are calling for the “freedoms that are enshrined in the United Nations charter.”
The ambassador referred to the failed Green Revolution in 2009 in which the reelection of Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sent thousands to the streets in protest, and sparked speculation that the regime may be seeing its last days. But protesters’ requests for support from the U.S. were effectively ignored as Obama chose to remain silent, ultimately dooming the revolution that was brutally ended with the deaths and arrests of Iran’s citizens.
“This is the precise picture of a long oppressed people rising up against their dictators,” Haley said of the recent protests, which have already seen hundreds arrested and over 20 people killed.
“The international community has a role to play on this. The freedoms that are enshrined in the United Nations charter are under attack in Iran,” she said. “If the Iranian dictatorships history is any guide, we can expect more outrageous abuses in the days to come. The UN must speak out.”
In stark contrast to Obama, President Trump has been vocal about support for the Iranian people. Deeply critical of the regime since taking office, Trump has often condemned the nuclear deal secured by Obama and tweeted his reaction to the protests.
The people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime. All of the money that President Obama so foolishly gave them went into terrorism and into their “pockets.” The people have little food, big inflation and no human rights. The U.S. is watching!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2018
Iran is failing at every level despite the terrible deal made with them by the Obama Administration. The great Iranian people have been repressed for many years. They are hungry for food & for freedom. Along with human rights, the wealth of Iran is being looted. TIME FOR CHANGE!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 1, 2018
Haley explained that the U.S. is planning emergency meetings with the Security Council in New York and the Human Rights Council in Geneva to discuss the events in Iran. She also praised the “bravery of the Iranian people.
“It takes great bravery for the Iranian people to use the power of their voice against the government, especially when their government has a long history of murdering its own people who dare to speak the truth. We applaud the tremendous courage of the Iranian people,” she said. “The government of Iran is actively attempting to stop social media and other forms of communication that allow their citizens voices to be heard it. We want to help amplify the voices of the Iranian people.”
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