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Oct 17, 2012 at 08:18 PM

On Tuesday, September 25th, 2012, Women’s Freedom Forum held an educational event entitled, “Learn Beyond the Headlines” at the UN Church Center, New York.

The audience came from a number of human rights organizations and UN missions, such as Office of Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Iran and The Mission of Canada to the United Nation.

The purpose of this event was to introduce Women’s Freedom Forum research and landmark publications. WFF’s recent publication “Working From Within 2011-IV”is a collection of an incredible set of reports from reliable and validated sources withinIran. The result is a very unique documentation of lives that have been and continue to be shattered intentionally and systematically by the brutal regime in Iran.ImageThis WFF effort and publication brings

voice to lives unfairly cut short, shut-in, persecuted, denying their basic right to life, and right to live with dignity as the most basic of human rights.

Two speakers, Pastor Linda Prendergast and Dr. Fehmi Khairullah presented a dynamic and engaging perspective and personal experience on the short-term and long-term impact of systematized government driven violence and brutality against people, especially women, youth and minorities in Iran and Syria.

They both engaged in open dialogue and encouraged the audience to look beyond the headlines and main stream media. The panel and audience both responded to the Q and A session. Questions regarding the investigations and reporting, or lack thereof, from mainstream media; the suppression policies of the mullahs’ regime that promote silence; the implications of this silence on crimes against humanity such as emboldening those responsible for the escalation of such atrocities. These and other points were brought up and discussed.Image

Pastor Linda presented sections from the WFF book.  Dr. Fehmi Khairullah presented his observation of visiting Syrian refugee camps and discussed the role of the Iranian Regime assisting Bashar Assad in escalating the crackdown against people and crimes against humanity.  He described the horrific impact the continued silence and engagement with the mullahs have had on the Syrian women and children.

The event concluded with calls to action for members of civil society to:

Seek out first hand information from the many Iranians and Syrians who have witnessed and/or been impacted by the human rights abuses of the these regimes.

Show empathy and compassion towards those who share their experiences with you and those who can’t yet bring themselves to re-live them.  Believe what they are saying.

Gain an understanding of these horrific human rights issues and advocate for policies that clearly move to eliminate them

Go above and beyond your comfort zone to bring attention to the abuses. Ask how you can help and then follow through.


“Working From Within 2011-IV” is available for purchase through Women’s Freedom Forum


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