Canada has designated Iran as a regime that has engaged in “terrorism” as well as the systematic and gross violation of human rights, Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino announced on Monday.
“The consequences will be severe,” Mendicino said of the new designation, according to a press release.
“Those listed under the Immigration and Refugees Protection Act (IRPA) shall be permanently inadmissible and have no safe haven in Canada. This is the strongest sanction imposed on the Iranian regime yet.”
Iran’s head of state, members of its cabinet, its ambassadors and its senior diplomats are just some of the thousands of Iranians now permanently banned from entering Canada as a direct result of this designation.
Senior members of the judiciary, military, intelligence agencies and public servants are also all barred from the country — and any of the banned that are already in Canada, the government said in the release, “may be investigated and removed.”
Canada and its allies, including the U.K. and the U.S., have been steadily slapping Iran with a suite of sanctions in recent months.
Iran has been engaged in a brutal crackdown on protesters amid nationwide protests. The demonstrations first erupted over the Sept. 16 death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in the custody of the country’s so-called morality police.
She was detained for allegedly violating Iran’s strict dress code for women.
Although the protests first focused on Iran’s mandatory headscarf, or hijab, they have since transformed into one of the greatest challenges to the ruling clerics since the chaotic years following the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Iranian authorities announced late last month that they will hold public trials for 1,000 people over the protests that have convulsed the country.
The sanctions are intended to signal support for women’s rights, Mendicino said, and to “fight for justice” on behalf of the families who lost loved ones on flight PS752, which was shot down in Tehran just over a thousand days ago.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reiterated last month that the Iranian regime “unlawfully and horrifically” shot down the flight.
— with files from The Canadian Press
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