by Staff writer, SF
Ahead of International Women’s Day, the Women’s Council of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) held a conference in Paris on February 17, designed to show support for the empowerment of women in Iran.
The conference, attended by female political figures from around the world, was focused on the theme of abolishing the suppression of women in Iran, including the rejection of the compulsory veil, the immediate release of all political prisoners, and the establishment of freedom of speech in Iran.
Many of the speakers, including President-elect of the NCRI Maryam Rajavi, highlighted the role of Iranian women in the recent nationwide protests and paid tribute to their bravery.
The Iranian women had taken to the street in their tens of thousands to chant that the Regime should be scared of the people, and Rajavi urged the mullahs to take note. She said that the women of Iran are united, but they are also supported by women around the world.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei thinks of gender equality as a Western notion, which is why their laws suppress women more than men, but the Iranian Resistance believes that equality should be a global standard.
Rajavi urged the conference to support the uprising in Iran, in the hopes that Iran and its women would soon be free.
Maria Candida Almeida, Deputy Attorney General in Portugal, expressed solidarity with the Iranian women who are risking everything to protest for their rights.
She said: “To the women of Iran, we are with you in your just demand to restore freedom and democracy. We will be your voice in the international organization. One day, the people of Iran will be free and there will be justice for all people who were mistreated and abused.”
Violence against women
Rashida Manjoo, former United Nations' Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, took the stage to talk the brutalities that Iranian women face on a daily basis, citing the prevalence of arbitrary incarceration, rape of political prisoners, forced marriage, beatings, and torture in Iran Manjoo said that silence from the international community on these matters allowed human rights abuses and amounted to complicity in the Regime’s crimes.
Baroness Verma, member of the British House of Lords and the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for International Development and Ministerial Champion for tackling Violence Against Women & Girls Overseas, explained that she would make greater efforts to ensure the UK takes action against human rights abuses in Iran.
She said that there should be no place on earth that these violations are acceptable and called on politicians across the world to challenge the Iranian Regime on human rights as well, by asking why protesters are being arrested and why people are going missing.
Also in attendance at the conference were:
•Linda Chavez, the highest-ranking woman in President Ronald Reagan’s White House
•Susana Medina, President of the International Association of Women Judges and a judge in the Supreme Court of Argentina
•Ranjana Kumari, a renowned academician and social activist
•Ingrid Betancourt, a former presidential candidate in Columbia
•Anissa Boumédiène, former First Lady of Algeria