Former US ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell says he has been sanctioned by Iran for his human rights campaigns, particularly those for the LGBTQ community.
Grenell, who was also a White House Advisor, told Iran International’s Fardad Farahzad on Wednesday that he is not surprised by the Iranian regime’s move, adding that “we know that they deny systemically, every single day, basic human rights for women, for gays and lesbians, for the general population”.
Grenell, a strong supporter of former president Donald Trump, who also tweeted similar remarks in Persian earlier in the day, said, “I’m not surprised that they see my work in Farsi and Arabic languages to push human rights as a threat. I am absolutely not surprised that they don’t want me to be speaking about these issues and try to silence me.”
Insisting that the Tehran does not sanction Democrats because they “are darting towards the Iranian regime,” he said, and added, “The Biden administration is filled with total hypocrisy. They pretend to talk about human rights, but it doesn't come into their calculus… they're talking about giving money to the Iranian regime, they dropped the sanctions on the Iranian regime.”
White House Advisor Richard Grenell takes part in a press briefing at the White House in Washington, September 4, 2020
Grenell, who also served as the acting director of national intelligence in the Trump administration, found himself on Iran's list of sanctioned individuals this week, joined by 24 other former Trump administration officials who were officially sanctioned due to what Iran called “terrorist activity and human rights violations".
“I would just note that on the Iranians' list of sanctions, of who they're concerned about, who they want to silence, there are no Democrats, there are no progressives on that list. They're just Republicans” he added.
He said, “I find it as a point of pride when your enemies publicly say that you are a threat to them it just means that you are really doing good work”.
He defended his efforts for the rights of the LGBTQ community, saying that “I believe that if you are an international diplomat and you are working to criminalize homosexuality, then you should not get a visa. Your kids should not get a visa to come to the US. There needs to be consequences for individuals who criminalize homosexuality and push that issue in their country”.
Grenell added that the Iranian regime is terrified of the right-wing LGBTQ campaigns in the Middle East, noting that there is no such fear from the activities of left-wing organizations
There is no fear of the activities of Hollywood types and Disney-type left-wing organizations, he said. “I think the Iranian regime is very pleased that the gay left has never taken this fight to Iran or to the Middle East. I think it’s shocking that the gay left will continue partnering with the Palestinian Authority knowing that the gay pride parade in Tel Aviv is literally a beacon of hope in the entire Middle East,” the Republican campaigner said.