Stronger action consistent with New Zealand’s commitment to freedom, justice, and equality is needed to hold those responsible for violence and human rights violations in Iran to account.
“On the face of it, the Government’s travel ban announced today sounds significant - but the reality is, it will have little impact on those individuals targeted. What will make a difference is freezing the assets of these individuals, cutting diplomatic ties; and designating the IRGC as a terror organisation,” says the Green Party’s spokesperson for foreign affairs, Golriz Ghahraman.
The Green Party is urging the Government to immediately:
- Designate the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (the IRGC) as a terror organisation
- Target individual sanctions to regime-affiliated individuals and their families - and freeze any of their assets held in New Zealand;
- Cut diplomatic ties, including closing our embassy in Tehran and expelling the Iranian ambassador from Aotearoa
“It has been 86 days since Mahsa Jina Amina was killed. For three months the people of Iran have risked their lives, and over 458 people have lost their lives for freedom, justice and equality.
“The news coming out of Iran every day has been harrowing, including the deaths of over 63 children, over 18,000 protesters detained, and at least one protester executed - a 23 year old man, Mohsen Shekari.
“What is happening in Iran impacts Aotearoa New Zealand intimately, particularly the Iranian community living here. It is imperative that the Government responds with the strongest possible action - and while this morning’s travel ban is at least something, it is nowhere near enough.
“There is nothing holding us back from following our allies and security partners - including the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, the European Union, and Australia - in taking the strongest stance possible: targeted individual sanctions, closing the embassy; and designating the IRGC as a terror organisation.
“If the Government steps forward and joins our allies, we not only will help stop many more people from being killed, but we will show our support for the Iranian people being able to choose their own futures after 43 years of oppression.
“Our actions need to send a very clear message to the brave people of Iran: Aotearoa New Zealand is with you and we will do everything we can to help you,” says Golriz Ghahraman.