US Says Iran Enables Syrian Crimes as Hardline Iranian Presidential Candidate Gets Boost

Could Iranian President Rouhani be beaten out by a hardliner in Iran’s elections? Illustrative. FEMA/Marty Bahamonde.

Iranians are partly to blame for the atrocities happening in Syria, United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Monday. That same day, Iran reminded the world why that is the case as one conservative presidential candidate stepped aside to promote the candidacy of another, who’s perhaps best known around the world as a judge presiding over mass executions.

Tehran mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, one of five candidates attempting to unset supposed reformist Hassan Rouhani in Friday’s election, dropped out on Monday. According to PressTV, Qalibaf backed principlist candidate Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi while railing against “opportunists” who are “at odds with the intellectual fundaments of original revolutionaries” in Iran. The Iranian revolution in 1979 turned the nation into an Islamic nation that hates America and Israel. That also set the stage for Raeisi’s role as one of four Sharia judges for political executions in 1988, according to The Guardian, who identified him as a hardliner. And Iran’s cruelty isn’t just historical. Today, Haley sees a viciousness in Syria made possible by Iran.

Haley was commenting on a U.S. State Department report on the activities of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whom Haley said “systematically and brutally terrorizes” his nation’s own people, including the use of a crematorium to erase mass murders.

But she didn’t limit it the blame to Assad, according to a press release from the U.S. Mission to the U.N.

“While Assad bears the largest responsibility for his own brutality, his allies in Russia and Iran also bear heavy burdens,” said Haley. “Russia and Iran enable Assad’s abductions, torture, extrajudicial killings, airstrikes, barrel bombs, and chemical weapons attacks.”

And with one of the hardline candidates stepping aside to empower another in Iran’s presidential election, the situation may only get worse.

(By Joshua Spurlock,, May 15, 2017)


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