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petition & demos against visit of Iran's Khatami (Weds etc)

pirate | 30.10.2006 11:28 | Repression | Social Struggles | London

Former Iranian President Khatami is due to visit the UK this week (London and Edinburgh). Demos are planned and a petition has been set up against this visit.

Petition Against Khatami’s visit to Chatham House and University of St. Andrews, in UK

Mr. Khatami has been invited by Chatham House, London and University of St. Andrews in Scotland to deliver a speech as part of his “dialogue among civilizations” and receive Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws. He is due to visit these institutions in November 2006.

We the undersigned are deeply concerned that a platform has been given to such a hated political figure. Khatami or any other official from the Islamic Republic regime should NOT be given a chance to portray themselves as democrats or respectable political figures. Khatami and all the government officials should be exposed and tried for their crimes against humanity.

Islamic regime of Iran, under Khatami’s presidency, or otherwise has had a record of most barbaric, suppressive and reactionary laws, rules and practices. To name a few, one has to mention:

• The thousands of freethinkers and progressive people who have been executed;
• Gender apartheid imposed on people, especially women and young girls;
• Poverty imposed on people leading to thousands of street children, prostitution, and suicides;
• Hundreds of women who have been stoned to death;
• The brutal military style attacks of workers who demand their unpaid wages;
• The execution of children and homosexuals;
• The state regulated child abuse, girls under Islamic Sharia law can be married off
• The list is endless

Khatami, now and also when he was the president of Islamic Republic of Iran introduced, executed and supported, (and still does) these actions, values and principles. We the undersigned strongly believe that any institution giving opportunity to such a political figure that has such a criminal record undermines the integrity and fighting spirit of the people in Iran for a radical and progressive change against the Islamic Republic. It also gives credibility to a man who not only does not deserve it, but should be tried at International Courts of Law for crimes against humanity. Humanity needs to give Honorary Degrees to people who are struggling every day in Iran to gain freedom of speech and a better life for themselves and their children. By inviting Khatami, these British institutions are undermining humanity on an international scale. Such a shame!

Go here to sign

There will also be demonstrations in London and Edinburgh:
Edinburgh: Tuesday 31 October, 3pm 6pm in front of University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9AJ.
London, Wednesday 1 November 2006, 4:30 6:30, Chatham House,10 St James’s Square, London SW1Y 4LE, Nearest tube station: Piccadilly Circus /Green Park. Last year’s NSS Secularist of the Year, Maryam Namazie will be speaking at both events.

for more background to the visit see here