Washington, D.C. - Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today to mark Nowruz, the Persian New Year:
“Nowruz is an opportunity for renewal and a fresh start, a time for new beginnings and a new season, a marker of the first day of Spring and a chance for millions around the world to celebrate their heritage, honor their history, and look forward with hope to a brighter future.
“As we observe this day, we extend a hand of friendship and partnership to the people of Iran. We urge Iran's leaders to abandon a path of isolation, tear down barriers of communication, and take responsible steps to rejoin the community of nations. We pledge to work for a day when all Iranians enjoy the basic human rights cherished by Americans and demanded by citizens across the Middle East in the past year: the freedom to speak without fear of persecution; to demonstrate without fear of retribution; to participate in their government, choose their leaders, and practice their faith without fear of discrimination.
“Today, we hail the extraordinary achievements of the Iranian community in the United States - men and women who fled prejudice and embraced the American dream of opportunity. Forced to leave the homes of their ancestors, these Iranian Americans rebuilt their lives, succeeded and prospered; they continue to leave a lasting mark in law, medicine, and business, in politics and education. Their success is a tribute to our nation's promise of pluralism and diversity.
“To them, to people across Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkey, Pakistan, and elsewhere, we extend our warmest wishes for a year of happiness, health, prosperity, and good fortune. Eid-eh Shoma Mobarak.”