Iranian caller takes aim at 'atrocious' UK government approach amid Iran unrest

12 December 2022, 17:31 | Updated: 12 December 2022, 20:54

Iranian caller takes aim at 'atrocious' UK government approach amid Iran unrest

By Hannah Holland

Lou in Edgware asked Shelagh Fogarty what the Foreign Secretary deems "unacceptable" enough to prompt him to impose sanctions, as she condemned the Tories' "atrocious" approach towards helping Iranian people.

On Monday, Iran's regime carried a second protest-related execution, after months of nationwide protests against the theocratic dictatorship.

Majidreza Rahnavard, a 23-year-old, was hanged on Monday in the city of Mashhad, Iran's judiciary has said.

Norway-based NGO Iran Human Rights has said: "The Islamic Republic judiciary has announced the public execution of protester Majidreza Rahnavard in Mashhad, just 23 days after his arrest.

"He is the second protester to be executed in five days after the execution of Mohsen Shekari on December 8.

"Iran Human Rights condemns Majidreza Rahnavard’s execution in the strongest possible terms and repeats its call on the international community for urgent action and warns that in the absence of serious measures to deter the Islamic Republic from executing protesters, we will be facing even more horrific crimes like the 1980s mass execution of political prisoners."

UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has said Britain would respond with sanctions against Iran when its actions are "unacceptable", prompting LBC caller Lou to ask what he would deem unacceptable.

She then explained that herself and others in the diaspora have been “pleading” for weeks for the government to take action further since the “half-hearted sanctions” they have imposed so far are "not cutting it".

After suggesting sanctions that could be imposed, including sanctioning Iranian leader Khamenei, Shelagh agreed that more strident penalties would send the message that the UK “don’t recognise” Iran as a “genuine government”.

Lou went on to suggest that the UK ambassador to Iran could be called back and that Khamenei’s office in London should be closed, branding it “deplorable” that the Tory government has failed to do this.

“It’s just atrocious Shelagh - this is just basic stuff that we should be doing", she added.

Women's rights activist Nasrin Parvaz speaks to LBC's Shelagh Fogarty amid Iran unrest

Later in the call, Lou said: “Every day we’re hearing from people on the ground that are saying with every execution, with every rape with every report of torture, they’re getting more and more strengthened to push on.”

She added that the regime have “hijacked the country for 43 years” and are “draining it of its life-blood.”

“We just want them gone - every one of us.”

Lou then pleaded for people to “amplify” Iranian voices and mirror “a little bit of what we did for Ukraine”.

“The world is sitting back in silence and watching these executions unfold… it’s not a good look Shelagh”, she added.

READ MORE: Iran carries out first execution of prisoner held in Mahsa Amini protests

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