By The Free Iranian Staff
Four decades have passed since the rule of the Supreme Leader has effaced one half of the country’s population – in all of their capacity and capability – and disrespectfully detracted from our equal rights and human dignity.
Fellow free compatriots, subsequent to the revolution and the establishment of the Islamic Republic, many of the basic human rights of we women, were sacrificed, and women’s sexuality and identity became beholden to the iron grip of the Guardianship of the Male Sex and patriarchal culture. Anyone daring to oppose gender discrimination was subject to insults, humiliation, beatings, imprisonment, and in some cases, torture and execution. In a world in which women in many countries progress alongside men in the political, economic, scientific, cultural, artistic and sports realms, in the Islamic Republic of Iran women are fighting for their basic human rights.
Compassionate compatriots, we are 14 women inside Iran, active in women’s rights, objecting to gender apartheid, the result of the patriarchal gaze of the Supreme Leader guardianship system. We are against this anti-woman system which has effaced our human value. We rise and demand the complete abolition of the Islamic Republic and call for the establishment of a new Constitution. We call for a legal system that formally recognizes the grandeur, identity, and equal rights of women in all facets of life.
With all due respect to the fourteen fighters who bravely raised the Iranian flag of national unity and solidarity inside and outside the country, we women’s rights activists announce that during the past forty years the Islamic Republic of Iran has with force, oppression and the passage of inhumane and anti-woman laws, driven us to the margins of society. We cannot tolerate the perpetuation of this situation. With an eye to the equality of men and women in all aspects of society, and based on the International Declaration of Human Rights, we demand a secular, democratic government encompassing the entirety of Iran that guarantees our society’s women’s rights.
We 14 human and women’s rights activists are determined to be the vanguard for freedom in this country using civil and nonviolent disobedience. We declare “No to the Islamic Republic!” until we obtain the full range of our demands. We demand a national and human rights reckoning that when joined by you, our compatriots, will become a vast and expansive movement.
Shahla Entessari – Women’s Rights Activist
Nosrat Beheshti – Civil and Women’s Rights Activist
Fereshteh Tasvibi – Civil and Women’s Rights Activist
Parva (Sakineh) Pachideh – Women’s Rights Activist, Poet and writer
Giti Pourfazel – Civil and Women’s Rights Activist, Lawyer. Member of the Iranian Writers Association
Zahra Jamali – Civil and Women’s Rights Activist
Shahla Jahanbin, Women’s Rights Activist
Ezzat JavadiHesar – Women’s Rights Activist
Fatemeh Sepehri – Spouse of a martyr
Mariam Soleymani – Women’s Rights Activist
Sousan Taherkhani – Women’s Rights Activist, Retired Teacher
Farangis Mazloom, Mother of Soheil Arabi, Civil and Womens Rights Activist
Narges Mansouri – Labor Rights Activist, Member of the Bus Drivers Syndicate
Kimia NorouziSaber – Civil and Women’s Rights Activist