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Live updates from NY: Iranian-Americans rally against Rouhani at UN

13.50 (EDT) – Messages of solidarity with the goals of the rally are read out on behalf of groups of political prisoners inside Iran.

13.40 (EDT) – A delegation of Yemeni political figures are declaring their solidarity with the Iranian Resistance. They say no to the Houthis in Yemen, no to Bashar Assad in Syria and no to the mullahs’ regime in Iran.

13.27 (EDT) – A delegation of U.S. faith community leaders are now addressing the rally for freedom and human rights in Iran. Members of the delegation sum up their remarks by saying “No to Rouhani; Yes to Rajavi.”

 

 13.14 (EDT) – Delegation from Syria’s democratic opposition coalition is now addressing the anti-Rouhani rally in New York in solidarity with the Iranian Resistance. “Free, free Syria,” they said.

 

 12.40 (EDT) – Iranian-Americans are now addressing the rally. Their message is: “Throw Rouhani out of the UN. He does not represent the people of Iran. The ruling fundamentalist mullahs are a threat to the whole world. They should be expelled from the UN. The international community should support the 10-point plan of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi for a future free Iran.”

 

12.28 (EDT) – Jason Weingartner, Director of Republican Party of New York: The vast majority of Iranians are under 30. They were vanguards of the uprising against the mullahs’ regime in 2009. We in the United States failed to stand with them in 2009. The people of Camp Liberty rightly expected to be protected based on the US promises. We failed them too. We must make sure that this failure is not repeated again. We will stand with you.

12.20 (EDT) A message by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, is being read out to the rally. Mrs. Rajavi said in part: 

Rouhani is part of a regime whose survival is ensured only through daily executions, torture of prisoners, suppression of women and plundering of social wealth, as well as terrorism and destruction in the region. He is competing with the other major factions over his share of the power, while at the same time moving in lockstep with Khamenei when it comes to executing Iran’s youth, the number of which has risen to 700 in the first half of this year, and when it comes to exporting terrorism. 

During mullah Rouhani’s tenure, who claims to be a “moderate,” the situation of human rights has worsened by any measure. Protests by teachers and workers have been met with arrests or dismissals. Lawyers, human rights defenders, bloggers, reporters, Sunni Muslims, Christians, priests, Jews, Dervishes, Baha’is, Kurds, Baluchis and Arabs continue to be imprisoned, while the rights and freedoms of women and youth are trampled upon on a daily basis. During this period, the scope of the regime’s involvement in the region and the massacre of innocent people in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen have substantially increased. A few days ago, Rouhani shamelessly branded such meddling as support for anti-terrorism efforts and vowed to interfere in other countries as well. 

So, we declare to the international community and all leaders who have gathered at the United Nations: 

Rouhani is not a representative of the Iranian people. He and his regime are murderers of the Iranian people and the main causes of creating crises in the region. 

The solution to the Iranian and regional question lies in the hands of the Iranian people who demand the overthrow of this regime and the establishment freedom and democracy. 

The disenchanted people of Iran have repeatedly risen up across the country, expanding their resistance, all want one thing, and that is to overthrow this regime. 

It is no wonder that the mullahs have on the one hand increased executions, suppression and oppression inside the country, while on the other hand intensifying plots against the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) and the Iranian Resistance both inside and outside the country, especially against freedom fighters at Camp Liberty. This regime, which is standing on its last leg, considers this democratic alternative as an existential threat more than ever before.

 

12.04 (EDT) – Professor Alan Dershowitz, former Harvard Law School professor: There is a group of reactionary tyrants who are in power in Iran. Rouhani presents a smiling face but this is a false image. Rouhani has presided over the brutal execution of more people than even the evil Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. More than 120,000 people have been executed in cold blood by this regime. The mullahs’ regime specializes in killing witnesses to its repression and human rights abuses. 

The U.S. owes it to the people of Camp Liberty to live up to its word. We have failed to live up to our obligations to protect the residents of Camp Liberty. We have failed Iran’s dissidents. We have failed you. Today we are here outside the UN to say that our government and the UN must live up to their duty regarding the Camp Liberty residents. 

 

11.54 (EDT) – Edward Cox, Chairman of the Republican Party of New York: I stood with you last year and I stand with you at this year’s rally. The US claims it has reached a nuclear deal with Iran. But this deal is dangerous because the mullahs will cheat in order to obtain nuclear weapons. The Iranian people want freedom and democracy. In 2009 when the people of Iran rose up for change, the US government failed to side with the Iranian people. In 2016, the next president will support the people of Iran. It’s time for the terrorist ayatollahs to go. We support you in your cause of freedom and democracy.

 

11.47 (EDT) – Amb. Bill Richardson, former U.S. Ambassador to the UN and U.S. Energy Secretary: We support democracy in Iran. The mullahs’ regime does not understand the words human rights and democracy. It’s great that your movement for democracy in Iran exists. Iran needs to change. We must focus on human rights and Iran’s support for international terrorism. Under Rouhani there have been 2000 executions. According to Amnesty International there have been at least 700 executions in Iran this year so far. There is mass violations of human rights in Iran. But let’s remember that there is a democratic alternative that exists which represents human rights. That’s you. America should support you. There should be an international effort to stop Iran’s support for international terrorism. The mullahs’ regime in Iran is not a moderate regime. It is a terrorist regime. It is a regime that violates human rights because it wants to spread fear among the Iranian population to prevent popular protests for regime change. But the young people of Iran are determined to achieve change. Our message to the young people of Iran is that we support democracy in Iran.

 

11.31 (EDT) – Tom Ridge, former U.S. Homeland Security Secretary and Governor of Pennsylvania: The US promised in writing that it would protect the MEK (PMOI) members who are now in Camp Liberty in Iraq. The US and UN must make good on their promises to protect the residents of Camp Liberty. The US and UN should keep their word. That’s why I’m here today. I am proud of the sacrifice and courage of the MEK members in Camp Liberty. We support the modern Iran which is sought by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi and the Iranian Resistance. I am here to remind the UN and my colleagues in the US that although we have condemned the terrorism and torture by the group ISIL (ISIS, or Daesh), but the mullahs’ regime in Iran is carrying out the same sorts of acts of terrorism and torture, and we must stand against the regime. The majority of the people in Iran do not support the policies of the mullahs’ regime. I believe that the people of Iran are in alignment with the MEK members in Camp Liberty. That’s why I’m here to join you in this cause.

 Iranian-American youths are now on the stage, declaring their support for the cause of freedom in Iran. “We are here to represent the millions of Iranian youths who are striving for democracy and human rights”, said a young Iranian student, adding that she believes the future for Iran will be bright due to the persistence of the Iranian Resistance led by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi.

11.15 (EDT) – Michael Long, chairman of the Conservative Party of New York State: I am proud to be joining you in your noble cause for freedom for the Iranian people. Freedom should never be given up on. The people of Iran must achieve freedom. Rouhani must go. How many more people should be slaughtered and killed? It’s time for freedom for Iran and the Iranian people. As the chairman of my party in New York, I apologize to you for my President’s actions. President Obama is on the wrong side of history. How can you make a deal with a terrorist regime who kills people on a daily basis?

 

 

11.00 (EDT) – Iranians are starting to chant:

“Terrorist Rouhani, out of UN, now, now, now.”

“Rouhani is a murder; his whole regime is rejected.”

“Rouhani, no, no, no. Rajavi, yes, yes, yes.”

“Change, change, change; regime change in Iran.”

 

  

Speakers at the rally will include:

Tom Ridge, Former U.S. Homeland Security Secretary and Governor of Pennsylvania

Bill Richardson, former U.S. Ambassador to the UN and U.S. Energy Secretary

Professor Alan Dershowitz, former Harvard Law School professor

 

10.10 (EDT) – Iranian-Americans are gearing up to rally outside the United Nations in New York to condemn the presence of the Iranian regime’s President Hassan Rouhani. Thousands of protesters will gather at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza at 11:00 am (local time) to condemn the appalling human rights abuses in Iran and denounce Rouhani’s presence at the UN. Live updates will appear on this page.

The rally, which is being organized by the Organization of Iranian-American Communities (OIAC), will press the international community to hold the regime in Iran accountable for its abhorrent human rights record.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) in a statement on Sunday strongly condemned Rouhani’s presence in New York and at the United Nations General Assembly. “He is among the most senior officials involved in the production of the nuclear bomb, 120,000 political executions, and warmongering and slaughter in the region. This regime does not represent the Iranian people, and its leaders, from whatever faction, should face justice for crime against humanity in Iran. Iran’s seat at the United Nations should be given to its people and their legitimate resistance,” the NCRI said.