Congressmen Jim Costa (D-CA) and Ted Poe (R-TX) introduced a bipartisan resolution expressing opposition to Irans nuclear weapons program and human rights abuses. The resolution also reaffirms Congress support for Iranian citizens struggling for freedom and calls for fair, democratic elections in Iran.
Since the fraudulent elections, hundreds of thousands of Iranians have taken to the streets in protest, said Poe. They are fighting to be free and many giving their lives for democracy. At this critical time, they need to know that the United States, the leader of the free world, still believes that the pursuit of inalienable rights is worth the sacrifice. I urge my colleagues to send a strong message to the Iranian people that we condemn the human rights violations taking place in their country and that the United States will stand with them in their fight for freedom.
Iran's post-election crackdown following the disputed presidential election on June 12, 2009, was a human rights disaster. Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Basij militia, and police arbitrarily arrested thousands of peaceful protesters and dissidents, including students, women's rights activists, lawyers, and journalists in a clear effort to intimidate critics and stifle dissent.
Following the anniversary of Irans disputed presidential election, Congress must reaffirm its commitment to supporting democracy and freedom around the world, said Costa. Irans repeated defiance to the global communitys calls for disarmament is unacceptable. Congress must respond with additional sanctions and unified opposition to this abusive regime. Irans actions threaten our allies and the stability of the entire region
Along with expressing opposition to Irans weapons program and human rights violations, the resolution denounces the ongoing violence against the Iranian people by the Government of Iran and pro-government militias. The resolution also reaffirms the universality of individual rights and the importance of democratic and fair elections.
Reps. Poe and Costa both serve on the Foreign Affairs Committees and are co-chairs of the Victims Rights Caucus. Poe and Costa were joined by Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Howard Berman (D-CA), Ranking Member Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) and Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN) in introducing the resolution.