A polling station in Iran on March 1, 2024

US Calls Out Iran's Sham Elections, Pledges Support For Protestors

Friday, 03/01/2024

Amid a lackluster turnout in Iran’s elections, the US special envoy for Iran called the vote a "façade of democracy," as crackdown on dissent continues since quashing the 2022 nationwide protests.

The US Deputy Special Envoy to Iran, Abram Paley, pointed out that the Iranian people are deprived of genuine choice at the polls. “As some Iranians vote today in their first parliamentary election since the regime's latest violent crackdown, the world knows the Iranian people do not have a true say at the ballot box.”

Noting that the elections do not represent the Iranian people, he highlighted that thousands of candidates were already barred from running for a seat. “The regime seeks to use these elections as the façade of democracy, but has already disqualified thousands of candidates. The Iranian people know well these elections are unrepresentative, whatever the outcome. And we do too.”

He also referred to the ongoing suppression of dissent, citing the sentencing of singer-songwriter Shervin Hajipour earlier Friday. Hajipour's song, "Baraye," became a symbol of the Iranian protests, winning him a Grammy award and landing him in prison.

Paley also vowed that the United States will relentlessly expose Iranian officials complicit in human rights violations and denying basic freedoms. He concluded with a firm message of solidarity, "We stand with the Iranian people in their struggle for a free and democratic future."

On the eve of elections, the US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller censured Iran’s electoral system as “opaque” and “undemocratic.” "I suspect that a great number of Iranians have no expectation that those elections will be free and fair," the state department said.

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