Niece of Iran’s supreme leader calls on other countries to sever their ties with the regime | Iran
A niece of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has called on foreign governments to cut all ties with Tehran’s “murderous, child-killing” regime in a video uploaded two days after her arrest.
The video of a statement by Farideh Moradkhani, a well-known human rights activist, circulated online after it was shared on Friday by her France-based brother, Mahmoud Moradkhani. Mahmoud Moradkhani said his sister was arrested on Wednesday after going to the prosecution following a summons.
In the video, Farideh Moradkhani condemned the “clear and obvious oppression” to which Iranians have been subjected and criticized the inaction of the international community.
“This regime is not true to any of its religious tenets and knows no law or rule except to force and maintain its power in any way possible,” she said in the video. She complained that the sanctions imposed on the regime for its crackdown were “laughable” and said Iranians had been left “alone” in their fight for freedom. It was unclear when the video was recorded.
Farideh Moradkhani is an engineer who comes from a branch of the Ayatollah Khamenei family that has a history of opposing Iran’s religious leaders and who has previously been imprisoned in the country.
Iran has been rocked by more than 10 weeks of protests that have spread across the country following the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman arrested by morality police for allegedly wearing her hijab in a manner inappropriate. Iranian authorities said their investigation showed she died of natural causes due to a pre-existing condition, but her family claim she was beaten.
Protests against the clerical establishment have turned into a broad movement to challenge the theocracy that has ruled Iran since 1979.
On Sunday, judicial authorities confirmed that Iranian rapper, Toomaj Salehi, 38, who voiced support for anti-regime protests, has been charged with “corruption on earth” and faces the death penalty.
A US-based rights group had tweeted on Saturday that his trial had begun “without a lawyer of his choice”, and his family said his “life was in serious danger”.
Assadollah Jafari, the central province’s justice chief, said the trial had not yet started ‘but the charge against Toomaj Salehi has been drafted and referred’ to the court in Isfahan, according to the Mizan Online website. of the judiciary.
Salehi is accused of “corruption on earth”, according to justice, one of the most serious offenses of the Islamic republic.
He is also accused of spreading “lies on the internet, anti-state propaganda, forming and leading illegal groups for the purpose of disturbing security in cooperation with a government hostile” to Iran, and of incite violence.
Iranian justice said more than 2,000 people had been charged since the protests began.
Salehi is among a number of prominent figures who have been arrested.
Iranian authorities said Hossein Ronaghi, another key detainee, was released on bail as part of an act of reconciliation by the government after Iran’s World Cup victory over Wales.
Ronaghi, a human rights defender, blogger and advocate for a free Iran for nearly a decade, was arrested on September 24 outside the Evin courthouse at the start of the protests. He has been temporarily released, his brother announced on Twitter. He has spent a total of six years in prison since 2009 and recently suffered kidney problems in prison.
It has also been reported but not confirmed that former Esteghlal club captain and current popular Khuzestan club player Voria Ghafouri will be released. His arrest last week for allegedly insulting the national football team caused an outcry among fellow footballers. A Kurd, he insisted he was not a separatist, but sided with some of the protesters as he met victims.
Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei, the head of the judiciary, had announced the amnesty in what could have been an attempt to capitalize on the mood of national excitement in the victory over Wales. In Tehran alone, 48 prisoners were to be released.
Moradkhani is the daughter of Khamenei’s sister Badri, who fell out with her family in the 1980s and fled to Iraq at the height of the war with neighboring Iran. She joined her husband, the dissident cleric Ali Tehrani, born Ali Moradkhani Arangeh.
She rose to prominence as an anti-death penalty activist and was last arrested in January this year. The arrest came after an October 2021 video conference during which she eulogized Farah Diba, the widow of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi who was ousted by the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
The Human Rights Activists news agency said over the weekend that 450 protesters had been killed during more than two months of nationwide unrest, including 63 minors. He said 60 members of the security forces had been killed and 18,173 protesters arrested.
On Thursday, the UN’s top human rights body voted overwhelmingly to set up an inquiry into human rights abuses in Iran during the violent security crackdown on anti-government protests.
Agence France-Presse and Reuters contributed to this report