Biden vows to ‘free Iran’ in West Coast campaign speech

OCEANSIDE, Calif., Nov 3 (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday vowed to “free” Iran, and said that demonstrators working against the country’s government would soon succeed in freeing themselves.

“Don’t worry, we’re gonna free Iran. They’re gonna free themselves pretty soon,” Biden said during a wide-ranging campaign speech in California, as dozens of demonstrators gathered outside holding banners supporting Iranian protesters.

Biden did not expand on his remarks or specify what additional actions he would take during the remarks at MiraCosta College near San Diego.

The White House’s National Security Council did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks during a campaign fundraising event for U.S. Rep. Mike Levin (D-CA) in San Diego, California, U.S., November 3, 2022. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Seven weeks of demonstrations in Iran were ignited by the death of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, in the custody of Iran’s morality police.

The protests triggered by Amini’s death on Sept. 16 have shown the defiance of many young Iranians in challenging the clerical leadership, overcoming fear that has stifled dissent in the wake of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. read more

The United States on Wednesday said it will try to remove Iran from the 45-member U.N. Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) over the government’s denial of women’s rights and brutal crackdown on protests. read more

Iran is just starting a four-year term on the commission, which meets annually every March and aims to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt, writing by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Stephen Coates

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