MEP reacts to the parliamentary elections in Iran

Member of the European Parliament Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) responds to the results of the parliamentary elections in Iran. The elections were an important test for the government of President Rouhani, with whom the permanent members of the UN Security Council closed the nuclear deal last year under the leadership of the EU. "This win for Rohani's 'reformist' party in Tehran makes it clear in which direction the Iranian people want the country to go. However, their choice was certainly not completely free and we can not speak of fair elections. A large number of candidates could not participate at all, and there is no freedom of expression in the Islamic Republic. The difference between the reformers and hard-liners is relatively small. We still do not know which future the young Iranian people really want, but we do no what they do not want. In particular, poor people seem to have lost their confidence in change and unfortunately stayed at home", Schaake said. Schaake also highlights the role of the EU, after the nuclear deal and after the elections: "It is high time that the EU puts human rights such as women's rights, minorities' rights and freedom of the press on the agenda. For too long they have been overshadowed by all the attention that went to the nuclear negotiations. The relationship between Iran and the EU must not only be of economic nature. These elections remind us of how social and political rights are still a dream for the Iranian people."