President Barack Obama weighed in today on the chaos going down in Iran tonight via released statement. The message to the ruling government is pretty clear: you're going about this the wrong way, and you need to stop. Right now.
The statement came as numbers from Iran's hospitals were leaking out. From a Twitter report via Andrew Sullivan: "30-40 dead as of 11pm; 200 injured. Police taking names of incoming injured." Meanwhile, Iran's government has noted that they're ready to recount (randomly) up to ten percent of the "ballot boxes." Obama's been previously slagged on by Republican leadership for not moving quickly or harshly enough on Iran. The full written White House release:
The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights.
As I said in Cairo, suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. The Iranian people will ultimately judge the actions of their own government. If the Iranian government seeks the respect of the international community, it must respect the dignity of its own people and govern through consent, not coercion.
Martin Luther King once said - "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." I believe that. The international community believes that. And right now, we are bearing witness to the Iranian peoples' belief in that truth, and we will continue to bear witness.