Iranian Association of Scholars Calls for Support of Asylum Seekers on Hunger Strike
The Iranian Association of Scholars, based in Europe, has released a statement aimed at Western governments and in support of Iranian asylum seekers in Europe. The Association’s statement comes after six Iranian asylum seekers have publicly sewn their lips together with fishing line to protest the U.K. government’s denial of asylum. The Association stressed that in light of the Iranian government’s poor human rights record Iranian, asylum claims should be treated very seriously. The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran supports the Association’s advocacy on behalf of asylum seekers and urges the European governments to note the worsening human rights situation in Iran and process the applications of asylum seekers in a timely and credible way.
The full text of the statement by the Iranian Association of Scholars is as following:
The ongoing case of six failed Iranian refugees who have sewn up their mouths with fishing wire and are taking drastic action in the form of hunger strikes outside UKBA (UK Border Agency) HQ in Corydon, and Amnesty International offices in London in the UK have highlighted once again the precarious position of Iranian asylum seekers worldwide.
The rigged presidential election in June 2009 provoked protest marches by millions of citizens and a brutal crackdown by the Islamic regime with shootings, torture, rape execution, arrests and imprisonments of protestors which are fully documented. Many young men and women activists were subsequently forced to flee their homeland and seek asylum in various European countries .The Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted after World War II has enabled large numbers of Iranians who fear persecution because of their political views to seek sanctuary in many countries including Turkey, Greece, Germany, France, the Scandinavian countries and the United Kingdom. Last month an Iranian refugee whose plea for asylum had been rejected set himself on fire in Amsterdam and a group of Iranian refugees went on hunger strike in Greece.
The high profile action of Iranian hunger strikers has attracted global media attention and the subsequent condemnation by the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) establishment. In the wake of these drastic actions and adverse publicity for IRI in the midst of turmoil in the Middle East, the hunger strikers will undoubtedly be detained and persecuted by the authorities if deported to Iran.
In the light of Islamic Republics’ appalling human rights records and the state sponsored brutality against political and human rights activists, we urge Western governments to support Iranian asylum seekers positively and treat them with upmost sympathy.
3 May 2011 London, Paris, Zurich
Iranian Association of Scholars