U.S. Designates Human Rights Violators

On August 21, the United States imposed visa restrictions on 14 Iranian officials involved in “gross violations of human rights on behalf of the Iranian regime.” On the annual Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that 13 were assassins who carried out “a brutal and intricately planned” assassination of Dr. Kazem Rajavi, the first revolutionary ambassador to the U.N. office in Geneva who resigned in 1980. He became an opposition leader in the National Council of Resistance of Iran. He was murdered in Switzerland in 1990. Hojatollah Khodaei Souri, the former director of notorious Evin Prison, was the 14th official sanctioned. “These actions send a message of support to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s many victims worldwide that we will promote accountability for those who spread terror and violence,” Pompeo said in a statement. “The United States will continue to pressure Iran to treat its own people with dignity and respect.”

Dr. Kazem Rajavi

Dr. Kazem Rajavi

 

Statement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

Friday, August 21 marks the annual Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism.  To both remember and honor these victims, today the U.S. Department of State is announcing visa restrictions on 14 Iranian individuals for their involvement in gross violations of human rights on behalf of the Iranian regime, the world’s leading state sponsor of terror.  This action is taken pursuant to Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, FY 2020, making ineligible for entry into the United States officials of foreign governments and their immediate family members about whom the Secretary of State has credible information of involvement in a gross violation of human rights.  Their immediate family members are also ineligible for entry into the United States. 

These actions send a message of support to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s many victims worldwide that we will promote accountability for those who spread terror and violence.  The United States will continue to pressure Iran to treat its own people with dignity and respect.  Iran conducts assassinations and terrorism abroad to spread its reign of terror well beyond its own borders.  Today’s action includes visa restrictions on 13 officials involved in a brutal and intricately planned assassination carried out in Switzerland in 1990 as part of Iran’s ongoing worldwide terrorism campaign.  These 13 assassins, who posed as Iranian diplomats, were acting under the highest orders of their government to silence opposition and show that no one is safe from the Iranian regime, no matter where they live.  The United States will not stand for the Iranian regime silencing its critics through violence and terror.

And it is not only abroad where the Iranian regime uses fear and violence to control Iranian citizens.  We are also publicly designating Hojatollah Khodaei Souri, who as director of Iran’s notorious Evin Prison, oversaw an institution synonymous with torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.  Evin Prison has been used to oppress peaceful Iranian protestors and journalists, as well as foreigners who are swept up and imprisoned to be held hostage to squeeze concessions out of their home governments.

The United States looks forward to the day when the perpetrators of Iran’s innumerable human rights violations will face true justice and hopes that these measures offer some comfort and reassurance to the families and friends of those lost to the Iranian regime’s violence and oppression at home and abroad.

 

FACT SHEET

August 25, 2020

Designations of Iranian Human Rights Violators

On August 21, the U.S. Department of State announced visa restrictions on 14 Iranian individuals for their involvement in gross violations of human rights on behalf of the Iranian regime, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.  This action was taken pursuant to Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, FY 2020, making ineligible for entry into the United States officials of foreign governments and their immediate family members about whom the Secretary of State has credible information of involvement in a gross violation of human rights.  This action includes visa restrictions on 13 officials involved in a brutal and intricately planned assassination carried out in Switzerland in 1990 as part of Iran’s ongoing worldwide campaign of violence and terrorism.  These 13 individuals, who posed as Iranian diplomats, were acting under the highest orders of their government to silence opposition and show that no one is safe from the Iranian regime, no matter where they live.  Below is a list of their names:

  • Sadegh Baba’ie
  • Ali Reza Bayani Hamadani
  • Said Danesh
  • Ali Hadavi
  • Saeed Hemati
  • Mohammad Reza Jazayeri
  • Moshen Sharif Esfahani
  • Ali Moslehiaraghi
  • Naser Pourmirzai
  • Mohsen Pourshafiee
  • Mohammad Said Rezvani
  • Mahmoud Sajadian
  • Yadollah Samadi

In addition, the Department of State publicly designated Hojatollah Khodaei Souri, the director of Iran’s notorious Evin Prison, under 7031(c), rendering him ineligible for entry into the United States.  Souri oversaw an institution synonymous with torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.
 

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