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Obama takes action against Iranian officials involved in human rights abuses

President Obama has signed an executive order imposing sanctions on eight Iranian officials involved in "serious human rights abuses against the people of Iran," the White House said Wednesday.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner were due to provide details at an afternoon news conference.

The move marks the first time the Obama administration has taken action against Iran for alleged abuses during its disputed 2009 presidential election. The eight people will be subject to financial sanctions and ineligible to obtain U.S. visas.

"The list of names is not exhaustive and will continue to grow based on events in Iran and as additional information and evidence becomes available," a White House statement said.

The move comes one week after Obama highlighted human rights as a matter of moral and pragmatic necessity for the United States in his annual speech before the U.N. General Assembly.

Please continue for a list of the individuals.

Those named on the list are:

1. Mohammad Ali Jafari [Commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, born Sept. 1, 1957]
2. Sadegh Mahsouli [Minister of Welfare and Social Security, former Minister of the Interior and Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces for Law Enforcement, born 1959]
3. Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejei [Prosecutor-General of Iran, former Minister of Intelligence, born circa 1956]
4. Saeed Mortazavi [head of Iranian Anti-Smuggling Task Force, former Prosecutor-General of Tehran, born 1967]
5. Heydar Moslehi [Minister of Intelligence, born 1956]
6. Mostafa Mohammad Najjar [Minister of the Interior and Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces for Law Enforcement, born 1956]
7. Ahmad-Reza Radan [Deputy Chief of the National Police, born 1963 or 1964]
8. Hossein Taeb [Deputy Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Commander for Intelligence, former Commander of the Basij Forces, born 1963]

By Glenn Kessler  | September 29, 2010; 12:56 PM ET
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This only confirms what Iran has said all along. If it wasn't the nuclear issue, the US would find some other excuse.

Who's going to sanction the US for its human rights violations? Has everyone already forgotten about Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, secret renditions, waterboarding, etc., etc.. etc.?

The hypocrisy is laughable.

Posted by: ardestani | September 29, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

What's wrong with this picture. We punish people in other countries for committing abuses toward people but don't punish people in our own country.

Posted by: llyonnoc | September 29, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Yes, some other excuse such as the arming of Hezbollah, the cold-blooded murder of Neda Agha-Soltan, the kidnapping of Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd, and Josh Fattal, etc.
There is nothing laughable about any of this.

Posted by: veritasinmedium | September 29, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

To suggest that human rights violations by the US are even close to what happens in Iran is laughable. How many prisoners at Abu Ghraib or Gitmo did we torture to death? Iranians will stone a woman to death for looking crossed eyed at another man.

Posted by: ksilton | September 29, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Sure, the Iranian theocracy is barbarism at its best - after all, they are Muslims and operate under Sharia.

However, what happens in Iran is no business of the USA. THis action by Obama merely shows that the Americans cannot keep their noses out of the internal affairs of sovereign states. This is why the Americans are the target of attacks.

Nobody appointed the USA as the world's policeman. Nobody gave the USA any sort of authority to try and impose its doctrines on any other nation.

Iran is no threat to the USA, ecomically or militarily.

Iran is across the other side of the planet from the USA.

Iran has no diplomatic or other ties to the USA.

Iran is not even interested in having diplomatic or trade ties to the USA.

So what the hell do the Americans think that they are doing, by constantly interfering in Iran's domestic affairs, putting pressure on Iran for its perfectly legal nuclear program, sanctioning Iranians and demonising this nation, merely because Iran doesn't bow to the USA's dictates?

The USA should just go about its own business and take care of matters in the USA, not keep attacking Iran and Iranians at every opportunity and interfering in Iran's domestic affairs.

Posted by: ziggyzap | September 29, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

People like veritasinmedium care deeply (sarcasm) about what happens to the people of Iran yet when Israel murders Americans in cold blood they have nothing to say. Their agenda is obvious to anyone with half a brain.

Posted by: ardestani | September 29, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Suspect election in Iran? Solution;
have results verified by old pal Jimmy Carter... ;^)

- Balkingpoints / www

Posted by: RField7 | September 29, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

The Only thing that Iran understands is force. The pressure on this dictatorship needs to continue to be elevated. Their President is a Joke, since the country is ruled by religious fanatics. I applaud President Obama for this action.

Posted by: 189AROD | September 29, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

The Only thing that Iran understands is force. The pressure on this dictatorship needs to continue to be elevated. Their President is a Joke, since the country is ruled by religious fanatics. I applaud President Obama for this action.

Posted by: 189AROD | September 29, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

i havent read this article yet, but the title prompts this comment-
is anyone going to say ANYTHING about the prison camps in afghanistan that hold the innocent CHILDREN of suspected terrorists. they r in afghanistan-but thats just because they r being used for america's 'dirty' work. the children r kept for years apparently-saddiqui's daughter was there for 7 yrs? what was she guilty of?
well, i guess we cant exactly bring the kids to the usa. how wd that look to have kiddie prison camps on american soil?

pressure sd be put on iran for better human rights. journalists and dissidents do seem to have a lot of fatal accidents in their jails. and of course, the usual stories of rape/torture--same as the US army. [anybody remember the suppression of the pics that show the rape of iraqi women and the torture that was just too ugly?] we cant just point a finger at others for their human rights abuses to deflect attention from our own.

BTW-THE SIDDIQUI CASE STINKS OF A USA COVER-UP AND NO ONE IN THE USA CARES OR IS IN THE LEAST BIT INTERESTED. [whoops] it dropped out of the news as suddenly as siddiqui and her 3 little kids dissapeared of the face of the earth for >5 yrs. if u think that the usa had nothing to do with her disappearence, knew nothing abt her whereabouts for 5 yrs, knew nothing abt these small dissappeared children, i have to think that u just arent thinking. there r so many stories of american abuses that americans dont want to hear or believe. that's good for the govt. they create an evil enemy and a picture a noble america that can do no wrong. so many americans now think its ok to hang muslims cuz they must all be involved in terrorism. so we let our govt do anything, ready to believe we are right and good, and they r evil. who needs a trial? ugh

Posted by: fellowbozo | September 29, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but could anyone explain how any Iranian Echelon are allowed in?!

Just 8?

What part of Iran is in an active State of War with the US and Israel doesn't our collection of Governing Twits Understand?!

Posted by: SAINT---The | September 29, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

ardestani and others, you are correct. U.S. foreign policy decisions, especially in the Middle East, seem to be driven not so much by broad national interests as they are by narrow (but powerful) special interests, not so much by “peace dividends” as they are by “war dividends.” These powerful special interests, represented largely by the military-security-AIPAC forces, tend to perceive international peace and stability, especially in the Middle East, as detrimental to their nefarious interests. Instead, they seem to prefer an atmosphere of war and militarism in order to justify their lion’s share of our national treasury, or their occupation of Palestinian land. This explains, perhaps more than anything else, the unjust demonization of Iran and the relentless preparations for an all-out war on that country. If this argument sounds like a conspiracy theory, it is not because it is false; rather, it is because the U.S.-Zionist policies in the Middle East are so evil that they defy tender logic, civilized comprehension, or decent human intuition.

The question is “why is Iran targeted"?. It boils down to this: because Iran has broken the mold, so to speak, the pattern of imperialist domination in the Middle East (and beyond). Iran’s only “sin” (from the viewpoint of imperialist powers) is that it tries to be an independent, sovereign nation. All other alleged “offenses” such as pursuit of nuclear weapons or support for terrorism have proven by now to be harebrained excuses that are designed to punish Iran for trying to exercise its national rights as a sovereign country.

Posted by: Esther_Haman | September 29, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Everyone who has commented here is both RIGHT and WRONG. Now, I have said something that will be hard to dispute.

I must say, people have come such a long way in global political awareness since I was a little kid and no one knew what Iran was.

Posted by: junejoon | September 29, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Mr. Obama. This is the right way of putting this hateful dictatorship under pressure. I, as an Iranian, would like to thank you, and would like to express my utmost hatred for these murderers, their ideology, their religion, and their way of thinking. Meanwhile, I suppose that both Khamenei (the supreme leader) and Ahmadi Nejad (the fake president) should have been included in this list, as well.

Posted by: zarbatzarbat | September 29, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Are you think this 8 man have Account in the Amrican Bank?????????????????????????????????

Posted by: jrzm1388 | September 30, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

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