A group of women leaders in business, politics, and the arts from over 14 countries has called for the immediate expulsion of the Islamic Republic from the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
In an open letter, published in The New York Times on Sunday, the preeminent leaders expressed their solidarity with Iranian women and girls, as well as men, who are holding daily protests for more than 40 days across the country and abroad following the death in custody of 22-year-old Mahsa Jina Amini.
Signatories of the letter include former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and First Lady Michelle Obama, Canada's Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland and media tycoon Oprah Winfrey as well as Nobel laureates Malala Yousafzai and Nadia Murad.
They also launched a petition on www.womanlifefreedom.today that calls on the United Nations to expel the Islamic Republic from the commission, receiving more than 21,000 signatures within the first few days of going live. Additionally, more than 130,000 petitioners have also signed another letter asking for the same outcome on Change.org.
Lamenting the Islamic Republic's record on women's rights and the brutal violence of security forces against peaceful protesters, they said, “Earlier this year, to the dismay of women's rights advocates around the world, Iran began a four–year term on the UN's 45–member Commission on the Status of Women. This preeminent global body is exclusively dedicated to promoting gender equality and women's empowerment. The Islamic Republic of Iran's long–standing, systematic oppression of women should have disqualified them from election to the CSW."