UFC president Dana White posted a video on his social media account on Thursday asking for the government of Iran to spare someone’s life. You can watch that stunning video below.
— danawhite (@danawhite) September 4, 2020
Transcript of White’s Statement About Navid Afkari
You can read a transcript of White’s statement and plea for the life of Navid Afkari below.
“This week the New York Times wrote a story about a very famous wrestler from Iran. His name is Navid Afkari, and he went to a peaceful protest in Iran and he’s going to be executed for that. So it was brought to my attention, and…this guy is a human being…he’s one of us. It could be any of my fighters.
The only thing I thought to do was to call the president and see if he could help this man.
He said, ‘Let us look into it. Let me talk to my administration and see if there’s something we can do to save his life.’
So today, the president tweeted the tweet that’s attached to this video, and I would just like to say that I, too, respectfully and humbly ask the government officials in Iran to please not execute this man and spare his life.”
President Trump’s Tweet About Navid Afkari
President Trump also tweeted about the Navid Afkari situation.
Trump posted, “Hearing that Iran is looking to execute a great and popular wrestling star, 27-year-old Navid Afkari, whose sole act was an anti-government demonstration on the streets. They were protesting the “country’s worsening economic situation and inflation”.
Trump continued,” …To the leaders of Iran, I would greatly appreciate if you would spare this young man’s life, and not execute him. Thank you!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 3, 2020
UFC Community Responds to White’s Plea About Afkari’s Plight
Many people in the UFC world saw White’s heartfelt plea on social media and responded to offer their support.
UFC reporter Laura Sanko posted, “Thank you for speaking up and bringing light to this situation.”
UFC bantamweight Pedro Munhoz posted, “Good job…do the right things for the right reasons.”
UFC women’s strawweight Tatiana Suarez posted, “Praying this doesn’t happen. I hope your efforts help this man.”
Other celebrities from the UFC community also responded to White’s plea by posting the praying hands emojis.
The list of people who did that includes former champs Frankie Edgar and Jessica Andrade as well as Octagon Girl Brittney Palmer.
Who Is Afkari?
According to BBC, Afkari is a 27-year-old Iranian wrestler who is facing execution in that country after being handed “two death sentences over the murder of a security guard during protests in Shiraz” back in 2018.
According to that same report, Afkari was convicted of the murders but “in an audio recording leaked from the prison where he is being held, Afkari said he had been tortured. His mother, meanwhile, has said her sons were forced to testify against each other under torture.”
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