President Barack Obama says the Iranian government cares more about preserving its own power than respecting the rights of its people.
Obama delivered that message in taped remarks to the Iranian people on Nowruz, the Persian new year. Obama says Iran has engaged in a two-year campaign of intimidation and abuse that shows fear on the part of the government, not strength.
Obama singled out the young people in Iran, saying they are the ones who can break that cycle and determine their country's future. Young people have been the driving force in many of the political uprisings that have sprung up across the Arab world this year, including Tunisia and Egypt.
Obama says those uprisings represent a season of promise in the Middle East.