Obama: Iran imposing electronic curtain on citizens

US president reaches out to people of Iran in message marking Nowruz holiday, vows to help ease Iranians access to internet.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, REUTERS
March 20, 2012 17:12
2 minute read.
US President Obama in video address to Iranians

Obama 370. (photo credit: Youtube Screenshot)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

US President Barack Obama accused Iran on Tuesday of imposing an "electronic curtain" to stop the free flow of ideas and information into the Islamic republic and promised a new US push to ease the Iranian people's access to the Internet.

"My administration is issuing new guidelines to make it easier for American businesses to provide software and services into Iran that will make it easier for the Iranian people to use the Internet," Obama said in a video message to the Iranian people marking the Iranian new year of Nowruz.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.




"For the people of Iran, this holiday comes at a time of continued tension between our two countries, but as people gather with their families, do good deeds and welcome a new season, we're also reminded of the common humanity we share," Obama said in the video message.

"There is no reason for the United Staes and Iran to be divided from each other. Here in the United sates Iranian-Americans prosper and contribute greatly to our culture," he added, citing the Academy Award recently taken home by an Iranian production and US Navy sailors rescuing Iranians taken hostage by pirates as examples of positive interaction between the two peoples.

Obama said that the regime in Tehran's crackdown on internet freedoms was increasingly cutting off Iranians from avenues of interaction with the outside world, and even with their loved ones within Iran.

"Technologies that should empower citizens are being used to repress them," the US president stated. "The world is being denied the benefit of interacting with the Iranian people," he added.



Click here for full Jpost coverage of the 
Iranian threat

The US president said that America seeks a dialogue with the Iranian people, setting up a virtual embassy and posting in Farsi on Facebook to that end. "You can see for yourselves what the United States is saying and doing," he said in the video message.

"The United States will continue to draw attention to the electronic curtain that is cutting the Iranian people off from the world, and we hope that others will join us in advancing a basic freedom for the Iranian people - the freedom to connect with each other and with other human beings," Obama stated .

The US president said that the regime of the Islamic Republic has an obligation to allow its people the freedom to communicate, just as it has a responsibility to meet its  obligations with regard to its nuclear program.

"If the Iranian government pursues a responsible path, it will be welcome once more among the community of nations and the Iranian people will have greater opportunities to prosper."

Related Content

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley delivers remarks to the press
July 19, 2018
Nikki Haley: UNHRC’s Agenda 7 is ‘directed against Israel’s existence’

By TOVAH LAZAROFF