Iran: is the game over?
It is increasingly clear that Trump's "maximum pressure" campaign against Iran is effective and has damaged Iran's economy, particularly the energy, shipping, and financial sectors. Oil exports have dropped from 2.5 million barrels per day in 2018 to only 100,000 BPD in 2019, causing foreign investment to dry up. Iran is facing "unprecedented" pressure from international sanctions, President Hassan Rouhani has said. On the other hand, hope for possible new U.S.-Iran negotiations has failed, because Iran has not changed its malign behavior, ballistic missile development, and aid to regional terrorist allies Hamas, Hezb'allah, and the Houthis and violation of human rights at home continue. The regime's reaction to the people's uprising has been to crack down further on dissent. Civil liberties are being suppressed even further. However, the strong people of Iran will not be silenced by this torturous and suppressive regime. In fact, protesters in major cities are denouncing both factions of the regime. They called for the downfall of the regime in its entirety, chanting, "Reformers, hardliners, the game is over." The world has realized that Iranians do not want the ruling clerics.
Now more than ever, the people — especially women – increase and intensify their calls for regime change as the mullahs continue to use the most barbaric methods to beat them into submission. The women are at the forefront of the battle against the regime and leading protests in Iran.
Sahar Khodayari, a young Iranian woman, snuck into Azadi Stadium, Tehran's main sporting venue. Her dream was to watch a soccer match from a stadium in Iran, where women are barred from attending most sports events since just after the 1979 revolution, but she was arrested.
On September 2, she went to court to be told that she had been sentenced to six months in prison. She had also asked Iranian regime authorities to return her mobile phone but was told that the judge was on vacation, and she would have to come later.
Khodayari set herself on fire in front of the court in protest against the unjust treatment and verdict. On September 9, Khodayari died in hospital with burns on 90 percent of her body. Khodayari's tragic demise drew worldwide condemnation from sports federations, sports clubs, and athletes.
The heart-wrenching death of Sahar Khodayari, a young woman who had self-immolated to protest against suppression and discrimination, underscores the imperative of confronting the religious tyranny ruling Iran and condemning its misogynous policies.
Sahar's tragic death is heartbreaking for all Iranians, especially women and young girls, and only strengthens their resolve to overthrow the ruling theocracy and establish freedom and equality in Iran.
The Women's Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran offers its most profound sympathies and condolences to Sahar's friends and relatives. It also calls on all international organizations defending women's and human rights to condemn the medieval clerical regime's misogynistic policies and its crimes against Iranian women and young girls. Silence and inaction vis-à-vis these atrocities only emboldens the mullahs to continue to perpetuate them.
Iran Human Rights Monitor has issued its monthly report into human rights abuses in Iran, and, as always, it makes for disturbing reading. The August report is filled with examples of a brutal clamp-down on Iranian society, in the midst of various economic, social, and political crises, in an attempt to silence dissent.
At least 41 people were executed in Iran in August 2019, with two executions taking place in public.
Over 30 activists, workers, and journalists have been sentenced to flogging and prison, 21 of them for participating in protests.
Perviz S. Khazai is a law graduate and former apprentice diplomat in the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in IIAP (ENA) Paris, in the United Nations in Geneva, in Red Cross International, in the Council of Europe in Strasbourg and International Court of Justice, and in The Hague 1969–1971. He served as an international law expert of foreign affairs in Tehran 1976–1979. He served as the head of the mission and acting ambassador in Norway and Sweden in 1979–1982. He is now a representative of the NCRI in northern Europe.