Tags: Iran | andrew peek | iran | regime change

State Dept. Official: Admin Not Pursuing Regime Change in Iran

Image: State Dept. Official: Admin Not Pursuing Regime Change in Iran
Supporters of the People's Mojahedin Organisation, Iran's main opposition, rally outside the Iranian regime's embassy in London in solidarity with Iranian people's protests nationwide. (Victoria Jones/Press Association via AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 03 January 2018 02:48 PM

The Trump administration is not seeking regime change in Iran, but rather for "the regime change its behavior" toward its people and protesters, a State Department official told The National.

Andrew Peek, deputy assistant secretary of state for Iraq and Iran, responded "no" when asked if it is a regime change that the administration seeks.

"We are calling for the rights of the people to be respected. We are not talking about anything else," Peek told The National, the Middle East's leading English-language news service.

"What we would like to see above all is the regime change its behavior in a whole lot of ways but in particular towards the protesters," Peek told the outlet.

Peek rejected as "tone deaf" recent remarks made by the Iranian supreme leader that the protests are being stirred up by enemies to Iran.

"What these protests are about are the rights of the Iranian people, not some foreign fantasy of Mr. (Ayatollah Ali) Khamenei," Peek said. "This is about his regime's inability to deliver to its people their basic human rights, prospects of economic opportunity, of political freedom. They can try to explain this away all they want, but it doesn't change the underlying reality."

Peek said the U.S. will not idly stand by while casualties mount; 21 protesters have died so far.

"We absolutely reject the idea that the best thing to do when people are trying to protest peacefully is to have violence committed upon them," Peek told The National.

"That is why we are working to deter violence on behalf of the regime against the peaceful protesters, and to take other measures such as rousing international support to try to prevent a brutal crackdown by the regime," Peek said.

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The Trump administration is not seeking regime change in Iran, but rather "the regime change its behavior" toward its people and protesters, a State Department official told The National.
andrew peek, iran, regime change
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2018-48-03
Wednesday, 03 January 2018 02:48 PM
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