Joe Biden said in a statement Monday that “this week the United States will impose new sanctions on those who violently target peaceful protesters” in Iran. The US President says he is “deeply concerned by reports of the increasingly violent crackdown on protesters in Iran, including students and women,” and pledged: “The United States stands with Iranian women and all citizens of Iran, whose courage is an inspiration to the world is.”
The United States is “alarmed and outraged” by the Iranian authorities’ crackdown on student protests, White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre previously said. Violent clashes erupted between students and security forces at a major university in Tehran more than two weeks after protests sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini began, state media and NGOs said on Monday.
Tehran sues the US and Israel
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Monday accused sworn enemies the United States and Israel of fomenting the anti-government protest movement. “The Iranian government’s treatment of women and this violent crackdown on peaceful protests … are the very behaviors that drive talented young Iranians to leave their country by the thousands in search of dignity and opportunity,” he said again Spokesman for Joe Biden.
However, Karine Jean-Pierre believed that the United States could, on the one hand, condemn this repression and, on the other hand, continue negotiations to try to revive the 2015 international deal on Iran’s nuclear power. “In our opinion, this agreement is the best way to tackle the nuclear problem,” she assured. “As long as we believe that continuing (these) discussions is in the interest of United States national security, we will.”
A volley of sanctions on September 22nd
“At the height of the Cold War, when President Reagan called the Soviet Union the ‘evil empire,’ he was also conducting arms control negotiations with the Russians,” she reasoned. Washington had already announced on September 22 a volley of sanctions against Iran’s vice squad and several security officials.
Mahsa Amini, 22, was arrested in Tehran on September 13 for “wearing inappropriate clothing” by the Morality Police, which enforce the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code. Women must cover their hair and not wear short or tight coats or jeans with holes. She died in hospital on September 16.