DearColleague.us

Letter

Mike Gallagher

From the office of:

Mike Gallagher

Sending Office: Honorable Mike Gallagher
Sent By:
Charles.Morrison@mail.house.gov

        Request for Signature(s)

Dear Colleague,

We invite you to cosign our letter to the President expressing support for the think tank and NGO community after Iran sanctioned the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) along with its CEO Mark Dubowitz and announced its intention to designate United
Against Nuclear Iran as a terrorist organization. These actions are unprecedented and are designed to intimidate the private research community while undermining the free speech of all Americans.

On August 24th Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs officially blacklisted the Foundation for Defense of Democracies for what it described as “unilateral and illegal economic terrorism.” This action by the Islamic Republic of Iran is part of a campaign
of intimidation geared towards silencing criticism of the government in Tehran. Iran has routinely used these tactics against their own people and political dissidents abroad.

We consider the blacklisting and threats of violence against U.S. citizens to be unacceptable. Further, Iran’s foreign ministry declared that Iran’s “security institutions” would be used to prosecute and punish those that were added to the blacklist. We
know that Iran has used its security forces to assassinate, intimidate, and harm those that disagreed with the policies pursued by Tehran. Our think tank and NGO community should be protected from such threats.

We ask that you join us in opposing these threats of violence and intimidation. Our values and support for tolerance, free speech, and religious freedom dictate our foreign policy including our relationship with the Islamic Republic of Iran and its people.
We support the Iranian people in seeking out freedoms not currently afforded to them by the Islamic Republic of Iran.  

To sign onto the letter or for more information, please contact Charles Morrison in Rep. Mike Gallagher’s office at
Charles.Morrison@mail.house.gov or Philip McDaniel in Rep. Tom Malinowski’s office at
Philip.McDaniel@mail.house.gov by December 20th.

Sincerely,

Mike Gallagher

Member of Congress

 

Tom Malinowski

Member of Congress

 

Joe Wilson

Member of Congress

 

Ted Deutch

Member of Congress

 

Lee Zeldin

Member of Congress

 

Colin Allred

Member of Congress

#####

December XX, 2019

The President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear Mr. President,

We write with deep concern about a decree by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran that targets the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), an American think tank, and its CEO Mark Dubowitz, an American citizen, with sanctions
and directly threatens the safety of its employees, as well as Iran’s announcement that it intends to designate the American organization United Against Nuclear Iran as a terrorist organization. The FDD decree called for Iran’s “security apparatuses” to punish
the think tank along with what it called its “collaborators and accomplices.” This action is designed to intimidate the private research community and seeks to undermine the free speech of all Americans. 

Threatening FDD, Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated, “this measure will be without prejudice to any further legal measures that the other administrative, judicial or security institutions and organizations may take in order to counter, prosecute or
punish the above mentioned persons or their other Iranian and non-Iranian collaborators and accomplices for their actions and measures against the Iranian government and people’s national security and interests.”

Iran has repeatedly used its diplomatic facilities and security forces abroad to intimidate, threaten, and assassinate those who disagree with Iran’s internal and external policies and practices. Iran has orchestrated assassination plots – some successful
– throughout Europe and within in the United States to silence opponents, diplomatic rivals, and activists.

To our knowledge, the FDD decree is the first time the Islamic Republic of Iran has publicly targeted for punishment private American citizens and a non-governmental research institution. While each of us may not agree on US policy toward Iran, we do agree
that this intimidation effort is aimed at stifling and threatening the free exchange of ideas that is a core value of our democracy. We strongly support FDD and UANI’s freedom of speech and right to debate policy without fear of retaliation. Threats against
individual American NGOs threaten all of us. We call on Iran’s Foreign Ministry to remove FDD and Mark Dubowitz from its blacklist, and to refrain from labeling UANI as a terrorist organization. 

We also ask that the administration continue to make all necessary efforts to push back on this campaign of intimidation against the American research community. We applaud the August 24th tweet by the State Department’s spokesperson condemning the threat
against FDD and reiterating that the Iranian regime will be held accountable should it seek to harm U.S. citizens. We urge that other senior officials in your administration take every opportunity to reinforce that message. The U.S. government has several
tools available to address these types of abuses, including sanctioning responsible officials through the authorities of EO 13553 and the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act. We urge you to take appropriate steps to sanction individuals within
Iran’s central leadership that contribute to the deplorable conditions of the Iranian people. 

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information:Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Homeland Security

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