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tv   Secretary of State Pompeo Remarks on Human Rights in Iran  CSPAN  December 20, 2019 5:14pm-5:41pm EST

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of view with things being confused about what is truth and what is not. educated people should have the skills to ask the questions that will lead to the evidence that can determine what is truth. secretary of state mike pompeo announced new actions named his human rights abuses in iran including sanctions and restricting visas for iranian officials involved in the abuse and killing of peaceful protesters. >> good morning everyone. i am morgan ortagus with the department of state. thank you everyone for coming today to this event to focus on an important and very serious
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subject, human rights in iran. i want to first recognize some really amazing people we have here today. i believe they have over 50 members of the diplomatic corps ambassadors in washington. thank you very much for coming. i'm very glad to see we also have so many people from the iranian diaspora as well this event is really for you. we'll begin today's program with the marks and secretary mike pompeo followed by a session with three cohosts of today's event and international religious freedom sam brownback deputy director for the iran action group might spell and assistant secretary for democracy human rights and labor robert estero. during the listening session we have this morning we heard from members of the iranian diaspora but how we can continue to stand with the iranian people by sharing stories, supporting their voices in championing their rights. today we will share what we heard from them and we will dig deeper into the issue.
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we will also have an opportunity to hear from three survivors who have first-hand experience of the iranian regime oppression. i would like to introduce assistant secretary for democracy human rights and labor robert estero. as he previously served a six year term as commissioner of the u.s. commission on civil rights. he has worked on a 15 year interfaith dialogue in united states and in the middle east. he is a passion for the people of iran and defending their rights. my friend tom -- a row. [applause] >> good morning everybody and not the half of the department of state and the bureau of democracy and human rights and labor i would like to welcome you this morning and thank you all for your participation. i'm very heartened by the presence of so many individuals
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today who are concerned about reclaiming broken promises about human rights in iran. i also yearn for the day when those who want to be here with us today will be free to enjoy that in an extended conversation about the promises for more than 2.5 millennia from the time of cyrus the great and his historic decrees that were the precursors of modern-day human rights. secretary pompeo has been clear that our priorities at the state department should be to stand with the iranian people and their demands for government that represents their interests and respects their rights. the secretary had been barely in this job for a month when he'd delivered his speech after the deal a new iran strategy. that was in may of 2018 and he followed that up with a speech supporting iranian voices in
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july of 2018. he spent countless hours meeting with members of the diaspora as well as works tirelessly to bring home many americans who are detained unjustly in iran including professor wang who just came home. ladies and gentlemen it's my privilege to introduce the 70th secretary of the state, secretary michael are pompeo. [applause] >> thank you. good morning. thank you all. good morning everyone. how are you all doing today? it's an important day at the state department and i appreciate you all joining us. thanks for the kind introduction and i am delighted to welcome you all here to the united
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states department of state. i'm especially happy to host our friends from a rainy and diaspora. your success is living proof of what the iranian people can do when their full potential is unleashed. of course i want to give a special welcome to the brave iranians in the audience who survived persecution. thank you all for joining me here today. it's humbling and an honor for me to see you all here. i love the diversity of the audience we have got here today. members of congress and folks from all across the non-governmental organization committee who are working on important issues related to the republic of iran. we have people from all across the foreign-policy community so many of our department of state team members vote in the diplomatic group thank you for being here. the diverse group in size and scale of the audience today tells us a lot about the willingness of the world to join
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in supporting iranian voices and iranian dreams. when we do this we will be upholding an american legacy is the world's greatest champion of liberty. we do this and we are telling the iranian people they have friends across the world and an america seeking justice for wrongs that have been done to them. indeed it's those very human rights abuses that the regime commits against its own people that rings us all together today and i want to spend a few minutes talking to you about it. i have a message for the leaders of the regime. if you seek to recover respect from your people and from the world, if you seek stability and prosperity for a once great nation you must respect the commitment that you have made. you must respect human rights. this symposium, this gathering could not come at a better time.
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protesters started accelerating in november clearly signaled the iranian people it had enough. they were fed up. they are fed up with the regime's economic failures and the regime that denies them fundamental human dignity that comes from each of us in the nature of her humanness. it's not about age group class or gender. female students in tehran to teachers and a younger man in mayor char. one of those young men was an electrical engineer his whole life who loves singing the all the song can't help falling in love with you. he was sick of what he called criminal and corrupt iranian leadership. last month he joined his countrymen on the streets to protest anti-went -- his mother
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went to the protest with them. they promised they would hold hands to stay together. as you have watched it is you have seen there was chaos in the security forces started attacking they became separated. she experienced every parent's worst nightmare pitch he saw fellow protesters holding her son's lifeless body. he had been shot in the head by security forces of the iranian regime. she agrees with so many other parents and amazing people across iran. she also says now his ideals are mine. i want to witness and celebrate the freedom of the people of iran. today many iranians are angry at the feeling that's been building for a long time. the ayatollah and his band of bugs that planted the roots from 40 years ago are going to have
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to change. in 1979 they imposed the islamic republic revolution on the open-minded entrepreneurial amazing iranian people. to this day the iranian regime is desperate to control ideas and control speech and indeed to control life itself. just a few examples from the last year. three women handed out flowers on the tehran metro on international women's day in march. they weren't wearing the hijab. the root gene sentence them to between 16 to 23 years in prison for prospective -- propaganda against the state a moral corruption. two months later the iranian government and religious minorities from working in childcare centers with muslim children. the community of journalists reported just this past week a few days ago there are 11 journalists in prison in iraq.
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iran's intelligence ministry is on a campaign of intimidation against family members of an iranian journalist. these handful of examples are a glimpse into 40 years of regime disrespect for its people, its disrespect to destabilize the internal order and disrespect to weaken the economy and the eyes of freedom loving people all across the world. there is a towering hypocrisy in this mistreatment. so many of these new regime human rights violations defied domestic law. 40 years ago this month the regime adopted the iranian constitution still in effect. article ix of the constitution says no individual group or authority has the right to infringe in the slightest way on the political cultural economic or military or territorial -- of
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iran but as protesters in iraq and lebanon are saying this is precisely what iran has done to them. article xiv of the same constitution says the government of the islamic republic of iran are duty bound to treat non-muslims in conformity with ethical norms and to respect their human rights. the christians and all legally recognize iran and tonight their full freedoms to do with christmas just a week away i can't help think of victor. a christian pastor whose home was raided during a christmas celebration almost five years ago. he and his wife and his son are all on bail appealing. thank you for being with us.
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[applause] and we recall the cries of where is my vote? those protesters were met with more bloodshed to be served out
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in places like prison. it's the same story today. the regime has killed hundreds and hundreds of protesters in mid-november possibly more than a thousand. the regime cut off the internet basic communication tool to try to stop the world to see the horrors taking place inside of their country. i can't imagine that the regime really thinks that this is what leads to prosperity and strength? i think they know differently. we asked the thames question on iran's infidelity. a founding member of the international labor organization but the regime steals money and drains their pensions. the money is taken from the citizens for their use to take care of their families and turn it into shell casings in the sand and yemen. labor organizers are rounded up,
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imprisoned and tortured. the universal declaration of human rights states that no one shall be subject to torture or to arbitrary exile but think of the sunni minorities or even nonreligious persons in iraq who continually face prison and torture and execution for their fate -- their faith in the belief system. iran is party to the international convention on civil and political rights. it sounds ironic almost to say it yet iran permits the use of the death penalty. girls starting at age nine and boys at age 13. two, 17-year-old boys were secretly executed just this past year. we have seen protesters come down at random on the streets in just the last 30 days. we grieved to see a callous and
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corrupt and disrespect of people. we grieved to see the iranian nation sink further into the pit of property because of unjust rulers. as difficult as the situation is as i have just recounted then i have only scratched the surface it's not hopeless. the iranian people have a steadfast friend and they are good people and they have. the friend is the unique hope star and her voice their writings of faith and ideals. the united states will stand and have stood with president trump for the iranian people. [applause] are public support and our moral support is important. our calls for justice matter.
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we call for nomination with a real economy for accountability. it's unfortunate that in 2000 when the opportunity arose americans did not do that. it's not political. this is about the best and what we want for the iranian people. the appeasement of the regime simply will not work. we have done something completely different. we passed the iranian people to send us evidence of regime brutality. we are bringing to life what the ayatollahs are desperate to keep in the dark. so far we have received more than 36,000 pieces of information and we are working each and every one of them. we have heard the stories him we have seen the faces. the faces of the victims will not be forgotten and the faces of the perpetrators will be pursued. iran's human rights violations
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are worse than unacceptable. they are evil and they are wrong and they fundamentally oppressive doctrines should -- entrepreneurship and spirit of one of the world's great peoples today we call on the iranian regime to fulfill the pursuit of any government. treat your people of basic dignity for which every member of the family of mankind is entitled. i pulled your commitment and digger on constitution of international law. act like a normal country. unleash your people's vast potential. we seek these things and we urge these things out of true principle but also as a message of common sense for the regime. true prosperity will only come to iran when you seek terrorizing their people and jailing them but i would urge the regime to follow the words of the persian poet.
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a lord who lays waste to the hearts of its people will only see in dream to prosperity he wants for his domain. to show that we mean what we say i'm announcing several new actions in support of the iranian people. first i have redesignated iran is a country of particular concern under the international religious freedom act. the world should know iran is one of the worst violators of basic fundamental religious freedoms. second, today the united states department of treasury will align to judges. [applause] among the acts that the sentence did was to sentence a human rights lawyered up women's
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rights defender just 33 years in prison and 2148 lashes. an american citizen spent 10 years in prison on false charges of espionage. she awaits relief that should never have been sent and stored chilled in the first place. he is the go to guy. he sentence journalists and human rights activists. he's a tool of the regimes oppression not an impartial friend of justice. today he is sanctioned by the united states of america. [applause] under the immigration and nationality act where restricting visas for current or former arabian individuals responsible for complicit in the
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abuse detention or killing of peaceful protesters or prohibiting the rights of freedom of expression. our action will restrict visas for family members the materials provided to us by citizens from all across iran will be invaluable in using this new authority to put true pressure and to hold accountable those who are denied freedom and justice to the people of iran. [applause] thugs killing people's children will not be allowed to send their own children to study in the united states of america. [applause] these are serious measures and thoughtful measures that took us a little bit of time to get to the right place. i want the people of iran to note that it doesn't have to be this way. the regime in iran respects the rights of all iranians and win
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respect from its own citizens they can shed the black label of being an outlaw regime in the eyes of the world and very importantly can enjoy the same prosperity and peace for its people as well. i think the leaders must know the people are demanding it. the path to prosperity for each country begins at home and the leaders of sovereign nations put their inches in the interests of their citizens first our collective future will be brighter. [applause] our people will be happier. basic freedoms will be respected. our partnerships will be stronger. just think of what could happen between our two countries. the president talks of this often. one day the locks on the doors at the iranian embassy in washington could be cut off. one day iran air could fly direct to los angeles or to
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houston. everyone should suffer lax. [laughter] one day our leaders could receive one another in goodwill and not its adversaries. what a moment that would be when we could reach those times. i pray and i hope that this day come soon. we along with you all are working to make this happen and i hope the regime will soon see its path clear to permitting this to happen. no matter what i tell the iranian people what i have said for many months and i will continue to say so long as it is required to be said. america hears you. america supports you. america stands with you. we do so for your sake, for the sake of freedom, for the sake of basic human dignity, for the sake of respect. thank you all for being here
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today and may god left the people of iran that may god bless the people of the united states of america. thank you. [applause] [applause] [chanting]
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[chanting] [applause] the speedway was the big event that started this place off in terms of worldwide fame. people know indianapolis because of racing and with a healthy sport in a healthy track i don't think that will ever change. >> no is one of the most famous authors to come out of indiana really up until kurt vonnegut and i describe him as helping define the rest of the country what a hoosier was. he helped introduce indiana to the rest of the country and indiana loved him for that.
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>> martin luther king dedicated his life. >> kennedy had no prepared text from campaign speechwriters and it was kind of what am i going to say here? kennedy was someone who could speak to people direct lee and give them bad news and be counted upon to do the right thing. it was decided that kennedy would come to 17th in broadway street to address the crowd that had gathered there. >> the great sense that you have two walk through this space is how understated it is. it's not ostentatious but if anything it speaks deeply of quality and i think that is harrison's character through and
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through, understated. >> good morning everyone. i would like to welcome you to today's judiciary hearing on an encryption -- excuse me that's not the right one. that's the wrong one. battling the opioid crisis a whole of government approach and i will go ahead and start with opening statements from the ranking member and myself and i believe senator durbin also has opening remarks and the

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