An Open Letter to the UN Secretary General

Akbar Ganji in the Boston Review:

ScreenHunter_08 Aug. 30 11.57 We, intellectuals, political activists, and defenders of democratic rights and liberties beseech you to heed the widespread protests of the Iranian people and to take immediate and urgent action by:

1) Forming an international truth-finding commission to examine the electoral process, vote counting and the fraudulent manipulation of the people’s vote in Iran;

2) Pressuring the government in Iran to annul fraudulent election results and hold democratic, competitive and fair elections under the auspices of the UN;

3) Pressuring the government of the Islamic Republic to release all those detained in the course of recent protests;

4) Pressuring the government of the Islamic Republic to free the media that have been banned in recent days and to recognize and respect the right of the people to free expression of ideas and the nonviolent protesting the results of the recent elections;

5) Pressuring the government of the Islamic Republic to stop its harsh and barbaric treatment of the people of Iran;

6) Refuse to recognize Ahmadinejad’s illegitimate government that has staged an electoral coup, and curtailing any and all forms of cooperation with it from all nations and international organizations.


1. Akbar Ganji, journalist
2. Jürgen Habermas, J.W.Goethe Universitaet, Frankfurt
3. Noam Chomsky, MIT
4. Charles Taylor, McGill University
5. Martha Nussbaum, University of Chicago
6. José Ramos-Horta, Recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, 1996
7. Orhan Pamuk, Recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature, 2006
8. Nadine Gordimer, Recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature, 1991
9. Mario Vargas Llosa, Novelist
10. Robert N. Bellah, UC-Berkeley
11. Seyla Benhabib, Yale University
12. Cornel West, Princeton University
13. Hilary Putnam, Harvard University
14. Benjamin Barber, Senior Fellow, Demos
15. Craig Calhoun, Social Science Research Council
16. Howard Zinn, Boston University
17. John Esposito, Georgetown University
18. Michael Walzer, Princeton University
19. Adam Michnik, essayist, Poland
20. Ahmed Rashid, journalist, Pakistan

More here.