Iranian foreign minister ’s visit to Europe fails to deliver expected results for regime
By Daniel Mahdavi
Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, visited Sweden, Finland and Norway where he was not welcomed in the way he expected. The Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden, Margot Wallström, announced during a press conference that the Iranian foreign minister was not asked to pay a visit to the county. She said: “We did not invite him, he came himself.”
The Iranians living in Norway and Sweden also made sure their voices were heard. They made it known that they were not happy for the Iranian official to pay a visit to the Nordic countries and they called on European governments to ensure that the regime is not granted any more appeasement.
Before Iranian foreign minister, Javad Zarif’s visit, the Swedish Iranians gathered in their thousands in the Swedish capital. They urged the governments of the Scandinavian countries to put an end to their dealings with the regime. They emphasized that the regime is pursuing weapons of mass destruction and that its treatment of the people at home is appalling. They also reminded the governments that Iran executes the highest number of people per capita than any other country across the world and that it is the number one state sponsor of terrorism.
The human rights situation in Iran is appalling and discrimination is rife. The regime is responsible for some horrific acts, including the 1988 massacre that is considered a crime against humanity. The regime jails political opponents and dissidents, reporters and journalists, human rights defenders, teachers, and so on. The regime considers free thinking and equality as a threat to its existence.
The Trump administration is treating the regime accordingly and has sanctioned Javad Zarif. The Iranian foreign minister is seen as an apologist for the regime and part of its propaganda machine. He has considered himself to be the regime’s link to the West where he has been well-received in the past, but this most recent trip changed it all. He was hoping for a successful publicity stunt, but he failed spectacularly.
Zarif, Iranian foreign minister was not expecting anything other than a warm welcome, but the Iranians residing in the Scandinavian countries had a different idea.
He was placed on the US sanctions lists earlier this year and quite rightly so. Instead of condemning the 1988 massacre, he defended it. He is as complicit as the rest of his colleagues. One colleague even went as far as to say that the regime has not yet “settled the score” with the MEK.
Javad Zarif will no doubt have disappointed Iran’s top officials when he returned home with nothing to show for his visits to Europe.
But the biggest thing to come from this trip is the message being sent by the people of Iran – the regime will no longer be tolerated. The people do not want the mullahs in power and they have made it very clear that they will not stop until the leadership changes. Europe needs to open its ears to these pleas and remember that human rights, freedom and democracy should be a right for all.