Niece of Iran’s supreme leader calls for countries to cut ties with regime
Farideh Moradkhani, the niece of Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and a rights activist, urged foreign governments to cut ties with Iran's regime in a video posted to YouTube on Friday.
Driving the news: The video was released by Moradkhani's brother, Mahmoud Moradkhani, who is based in France, per Reuters.
- Moradkhani's father was a Shiite cleric who was married to Khamenei's sister, per Reuters.
What they're saying: "Every day we are witnessing atrocities, monstrosities and horror resulting in great human suffering," Moradkhani said.
- She criticized the inaction of the United Nations, apart from what she called "short and ineffective statements."
Moradkhani urged citizens of the world to "tell your governments to stop supporting this murderous and child-killing regime."
- “This regime is not loyal to any of its religious principles and does not know any laws or rules except force and maintaining its power in any way possible,” she added.
- "Now is the time for all the free and democratic countries to recall their representatives from Iran as a symbolic gesture and to expel the representatives of this brutal regime from their countries; thus, expressing solidarity and unity with the freedom-seeking people of Iran."
The big picture: Iran has experienced more than two months of mass protests in response to the death of 22-year-old Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini, who died in the custody of Iran's morality police for allegedly violating a religious law requiring women to wear a headscarf or hijab.
- The protesters have faced an increasingly hardened government crackdown, including deadly violence by security forces, internet restrictions and mass arrests.
- More than 300 people have been killed in the demonstrations, including dozens of children, according to the U.N.
During a meeting with Iran's Basij paramilitary force in Tehran on Saturday, Khamenei praised the courage of the "innocent" Basij fighters when faced with the protesters, whom he called "rioters" and "thugs," CNN reported.
- The UN Human Rights Council on Thursday voted to establish "a new fact-finding mission to investigate" violence against protesters in Iran.