It is an open secret, in fact, that the global body has devolved into a primary mechanism for the world’s most brutal regimes to legitimize and sustain their rule, writes Mariam Memarsadeghi in iPolitics. Below is an excerpt from the article, which can be read in full here.
By Mariam Memarsadeghi, May 7, 2021
To many, the United Nations represents a force for human dignity and progress. But the reality of the United Nations today is a far cry from its historic commitment to freedom and equality. It is an open secret, in fact, that the global body has devolved into a primary mechanism for the world’s most brutal regimes to legitimize and sustain their rule.
A most glaring example concerns my homeland Iran, where women are subject to among the world’s most sexist laws. One would hope the UN would work to punish a gender apartheid state like Iran for its infringements of women’s equality and lend a helping hand to women’s rights activists there.
Not so. Instead, the Islamic Republic of Iran has been elected by the UN to serve a four-year term on its Commission on the Status of Women, the “principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women.”
This is a mockery. It is akin to electing apartheid South Africa to a commission on the elimination of racism. A nation that once led the Middle East in advancing women’s equality is today ruled by an Islamist theocracy that denies girls and women their most basic rights – one that commits violence, rape, sexual harassment, discrimination, and confinement upon them.
Girls are separated from boys in school and all spheres of life, taught literally they are worth half a man. Domestic violence and marital rape are legally permitted, and rates of punishment for so called ‘honor killings’ are disproportionately small. The parliament of “moderates” recently raised the age of marriage for girls to 13, and still allows marriage of girls as young as nine with a judge’s order.