Hundreds of people, mostly children, died in a direct strike on the rebel-held area of eastern Ghouta, in Syria, on Tuesday.It is just the latest horrific atrocity by Bashar Assad and his Iranian and Russian allies in the brutal civil war that has caused hundreds of thousands of deaths, forced over five million people to flee the country, and displaced over six million.

This war has long been criticised by those in the West, but make no mistake: the fighting will not stop until Iran and Russia stop supplying Syria with weapons and troops to aid in the war.

So far, the United Nations hasn’t even been able to impose meaningful sanctions on the Syrian Regime, because Russia, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, has vetoed them seven times.

But let’s concentrate for a minute on Iran, a country that is most defiantly not a permanent member of the UNSC.

Iranian Justice Minister Alireza Avayi has been invited to address the UN Human Rights Council next week.The idea that any Iranian official should address the UHNRC while their government participates in the Syrian massacre is disgusting, but that it is Avayi is ten times worse.

Iran’s human rights record is one of the world’s worst, according to independent human rights organizations and the UN itself, including executions for minor offences (drug possession), cruel and unusual punishments (floggings, binding, amputations, and stoning), routine discrimination against women and minorities.

Avayi's personal human rights record is even worse. Although he is the justice minister, Avayi has been accused by the European Union of gross human rights abuses while head of the Tehran judiciary, but unbelievably the tale gets worse.

He sat on one of the death commissions that helped execute more than 30,000 political prisoners, mainly members of the opposition group, the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), in the 1988 massacre.

Linda Chavez, the chairwoman of the Center for Equal Opportunity, wrote: “If we want to stop the bloodshed in Syria and the entire region, we must do more to prevent Assad's enablers. As long as Russia and Iran provide weapons, military forces and financial support to Assad, children and other innocent civilians will continue to die. Stopping the flow of money, arms and fighters to the region might be difficult, but some measures should be easy: Do not allow those involved in mass murder to address a UN gathering whose whole purpose is to protect human rights.”

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