Obama slams Iran government while paying tribute to Iranian people

June 24th, 2009 - 1:27 am ICT by John Le Fevre  

Barack Obama US President Barack Obama has slammed the Iranian government over its reaction to protests following the country’s presidential elections on June 13.

The President said the United States and the international community has been “appalled and outraged by the threats, beatings, and imprisonments of the last few days. I strongly condemn these unjust actions, and I join with the American people in mourning each and every innocent life that is lost.”

Mr. Obama said he had made it clear that the US government respects the sovereignty of the Islamic Republic of Iran and “is not at all interfering in Iran’s affairs.”

The President described as “patently false and absurd” any accusations by the Iranian government that the US was in any way involved in the ongoing street protests, saying, “this tired strategy of using old tensions to scapegoat other countries won’t work anymore”.

Mr Obama said the world has seen courageous women stand up to brutality and threats, and “we have experienced the searing image of a woman bleeding to death on the streets.

“While this loss is raw and painful, we also know this, those who stand up for justice are always on the right side of history”.

Referring back to the speech he made at Cairo University earlier this month in which he reached out to the Muslim world calling for America and the Islamic world to drop their suspicions of one another and forge new alliances, the President said, “suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away”.

He said that if the Iranian government sought the respect of the international community, it must respect right of its people to assembly and free speech and heed the will of its own people.

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