Date: May 31, 1999 [ 0: 0: 0]
Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 29 May 1999 to 30 May 1999
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Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 29 May 1999 to 30 May 1999
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There is one message totalling 270 lines in this issue.
Topics of the day:
1. HAMBASTEGI 82
Date: Sun, 30 May 1999 09:22:05 EDT
Subject: HAMBASTEGI 82
NATO'S HUMANITARIANISM IS FATAL
Maryam Namazie, IFIR Deputy Director
May 24, 1999
NATO, led by the United States, has been indiscriminately
bombing Yugoslavia for the past two months "to save lives,
alleviate suffering, reunite families and help the refugees,"
according to US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. In
fact, however, NATO's bombing campaign has taken
innumerable lives, destroyed homes, hospitals and entire
infrastructures, and disproportionately heightened suffering.
Moreover, it has exacerbated the refugee flow, which has
reached an estimated 800,000 refugees and internally displaced
- the largest sudden mass movement of people in Europe since
the Second World War.
Though NATO provides many justifications for its actions, the
truth of the matter is that the US and NATO are asserting the
new world [dis]order. NATO's and the US' war propaganda is
being spewed out to preserve the US' hegemony after the end
of the Cold War which has been filled with ideological uncertainty
for the west. As Clinton has so clearly stated, the armed forces
are putting "America's military might to work in building a new
world" - building it with corpses.
Tens of thousands of sorties and billions of dollars later, the
mass destruction and unabated killing continue. Such hypocrisy
and deception, parroted by overpaid journalists, though not new,
have reached preposterous heights. Clearly, human and refugee
rights are not the reasons for NATO's and the US' concerns. They
have often neglected, perpetuated and been directly responsible
for massive human rights violations in other countries, including
their own. Turkey, a NATO member, has been eradicating the
Kurds in that region for decades. They themselves have
perpetuated the reactionary nationalism, which now engulfs
Yugoslavia. Also, when it comes to refugee rights, it is they who
have paved the way for the diminishing right to asylum.
It is obvious whose war this is and what politics it is in continuation
of. We must unequivocally demand an end to the NATO's and
US' intervention in other countries. We must leave it to the working
class and people of Yugoslavia - a people with a proud history
of fighting fascism - to rid themselves of their dictator. The
bombing only weakens and pushes back the movement in
Kosovo and Yugoslavia for freedom and equality.
The ruling elite of the US, NATO, and Yugoslavia have clear
interests at stake. So do we. Only we can and must defend
the interests of the working class and people of Yugoslavia by
giving an unequivocal no to NATO!
FREE DETAINED ASYLUM SEEKERS IN BRITAIN NOW!
Farshad Husseini, IFIR Britain Branch Director
April 20, 1999
In the morning of April 20, 1999, immigration and police officials
launched a concerted raid of asylum seekers' homes across
London. As a result, more than 281 asylum seekers, including
131 Iranians, have been detained at Harmondsworth and Campsfield
centers in west London and Oxford respectively.
Ironically, these arrests occur at a time when the entire western
world's might has been deployed in the name of Kosovar refugees.
The desperate plight of refugees fleeing from death and destruction
are used to justify a brutal war in the heart of Europe. Like the
Kosovars, the detained asylum seekers in Britain are victims of war,
oppression and dictatorial regimes. Their detention is in stark
contradiction to all international conventions on refugees and human
rights. Furthermore, such behavior at home exposes the real
intentions of the British government and its allies in continuing their
The International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR) Britain
Branch strongly condemns this latest raid and detention of asylum
seekers. In particular, we condemn the arrests of Iranian asylum
seekers who have fled the barbaric regime of the Islamic Republic
of Iran. Needless to say, if these asylum seekers are deported back
to Iran, they will face persecution.
IFIR Britain calls upon all organizations and individuals to raise their
voices to condemn the latest attack on asylum seekers and demand
an immediate and unconditional release of all detainees, an end
to deportation, and the recognition of the right to asylum.
IFIR PRESS RELEASES
January - April 1999
The International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR), with its 40
branches in 15 countries worldwide, has unrelentingly exposed the
Islamic Republic of Iran and defended refugee rights over the past
ten years. In order to better publicize IFIR's campaigns, a summary
of our main press releases, most of which are translated from Persian,
are printed in Hambastegi.
IFIR Finnish Branch, Ismail Veissi, January 1, 1999: The press
release urges progressive, left and labor groups to break their
silence around the Finnish Foreign Minister's visit to the Islamic Republic
of Iran and to condemn the regime.
IFIR Norwegian Branch, Join the Demonstrations Against the
Islamic Republic of Iran, January 10, 1999: The press release
summons groups and individuals to join the demonstrations worldwide,
organized by the Worker-communist Party of Iran, against the recent
assassinations by the regime.
IFIR Secretariat, Survivors of Two Decades of Repression in Iran Will
Not Allow the Dutch Government to Deport Asylum Seekers to
Persecution, February 5, 1999: On February 4, 1999, the IFIR
Netherlands Branch and several other refugee groups occupied the
office of the United Nations in protest of the Dutch government's policies.
Demands included canceling the report of the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs that effectively deems Iran a "safe" country; ceasing the
deportation of Iranian asylum seekers; re-opening all rejected
casefiles; and recognizing the right to asylum for Iranians. The
Netherlands Branch also issued several press releases.
IFIR German Branch, Nader Sharifi, IFIR's Three-week Campaign
Received Extensive Support from Left and Progressive Organizations,
February 8, 1999: The press release lists fourteen groups and
parties which have supported the sit-in of Iranian refugees in Bokum,
Germany, including The Green Party of Bokum, Pro Asyl, International
Solidarity, Antirassismus Tele, and Frauen Solidaritat.
IFIR Secretariat, Support the Sit-in of Iranian Refugees in
Germany, February 10, 1999: IFIR German Branch summoned a
three week sit-in in Bokum to protest the German government's plan
to deport thousands back to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The sit-in
called for support of its demands of the German government,
including an end to deportations to Iran; the release of all imprisoned
asylum seekers; the re-opening of all closed casefiles; banning
the distribution of the Iranian embassy's security forms to asylum
seekers; and recognizing the right to protection for Iranian asylum
seekers. In addition, the German Branch issued numerous press
releases, including a call to demonstrate against the government's
IFIR New York, Maryam Namazie, The Streets are Ours if Only We
Would Take Them, April 14, 1999: On February 4, 1999, four
policemen in New York City murdered Amadou Diallo, a 21-year-
old immigrant and street vendor. The press release calls for ongoing
protests to gain real reforms, including an end to armed mercenaries
in the streets.
IFIR Secretariat, Condemn the Islamic Republic of Iran for Its
Misogynist Policies, February 1999: The press release condemns
the regime on International Women's Day for its system of sexual
IFIR Vancouver Branch, Demonstrate Against Anti-Refugee Legislation,
March 2, 1999: The press release summons groups and individuals to a
demonstration against the Canadian government's proposed anti-refugee
IFIR Secretariat, Maryam Namazie, Those Who are Aware of the
Truth and Deny it are Complicit in Crimes Against Humanity, March
10, 1999: The press release condemns Western collusion with the
Islamic Republic of Iran during Khatami's visit to Italy to facilitate
business as usual.
IFIR Britain Branch, Farshad Husseini, Free Detained Asylum
Seekers in Britain Now! April 20, 1999: The press release calls
upon organizations and individuals to raise their voices to condemn
the latest attack on asylum seekers and demand an immediate and unconditional
release of all detainees, an end to deportation, and
the recognition of the right to asylum. Another press release dated
April 30, 1999 calls on individuals and organizations to demonstrate
against the British government's assault.
IFIR Secretariat, The Extensive Attack against Asylum Seekers in
Britain will Not Remain Unanswered, April 28, 1999: The release
condemns the arrest of 281 asylum seekers, including 131 Iranian
asylum seekers in Britain.
WHAT IS IFIR?
Mission: The International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR)
is committed to organizing the protests of Iranian refugees and
asylum seekers in support of political and social campaigns which:
· defend refugee and human rights;
· expose the Islamic Republic of Iran;
· reveal the progressive and modern character of Iranian refugees in
contrast to usual negative and reactionary portrayals;
· create a progressive environment among Iranians abroad; and,
· place this force alongside the progressive forces in their countries
Hambastegi (Solidarity) is IFIR's bi-monthly publication, which
promotes its mission.
Organizational Structure: Established in 1990, IFIR is an international
organization with over 40 branches in fifteen countries worldwide.
Each branch promotes IFIR's mission in its own country of residence.
Any individual/organization who/which believes in IFIR's mission can
become a member and activist, as long as s/he has not been involved
in the repressive forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran or monarchy.
The IFIR Director, elected by branch representatives in bi-annual
conferences, provides political guidance and summons international
Accomplishments: IFIR's accomplishments over the years are many.
Recent examples are:
· International Efforts Against Turkish Government Successful,
September 1997: IFIR's campaign against the Turkish government's
decision to deport 600 asylum seekers succeeded in canceling
their deportation orders, gaining transit visas for those refugees who
had been deported to Iraq prior to the initiation of the campaign, and
gaining exit visas for those being transferred to a safe resettlement
· The Dutch Government Backs Down, October 1997: On October
20, 1997 a five-member IFIR delegation was invited to speak at
a parliamentary hearing about the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' report
on Iran which effectively deemed Iran a safe country. In the face
of strong opposition, including mass demonstrations and a sit-in
organized by the IFIR Netherlands Branch, the Ministry called for
an end to deportations until further investigations were made into
the situation in Iran.
· Iranian Refugees in Iraq End Successful Sit-in, September 1998:
Faced with local pressure from Iranian refugees in Iraqi Kurdistan
who had organized a sit-in as well international pressure coordinated
by IFIR, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
(UNHCR) finally addressed the legitimate demands of the refugees.
The UNHCR Iraq Branch Office agreed to doubling food rations,
providing medical and pharmaceuticals services, expediting
the determination procedures and resettling up to 2,000 refugees.
· The Anti-Refugee Policies of the German Government is
Condemned, September 1998: A protest campaign summoned
by the IFIR German Branch and three other organizations was
endorsed by more than 200 organizations. More than 30
thousand individuals participated in the actions that took place in
36 cities throughout Germany.
· The Minister of Immigration Backs Down, October 14, 1998:
The Canadian Minister of Immigration formally opposed many items
on the "Not Just Numbers" Legislation, though she had initially
supported it. The legislation was to pass in May of this year but
failed as a result of national protests organized by the "Campaign
against the Federal Government Attacks on Immigrants and Refugees,"
initiated by the IFIR Canada Branch.
· Iran is Unsafe, Deportation Must End," November 16, 1998: As a
result of the IFIR Swedish Branch's protests, representatives of seven
parties in the Swedish parliament signed a recommendation stating
that Iran be deemed unsafe and that deportation to Iran be stopped.
Visit IFIR's Web Site at www.hambastegi.org for more information
or contact GPO, PO Box 7051, New York, NY 10116.
Tel: 212-747-1046. Fax: 212-425-7260. E:mail: email@example.com /
End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 29 May 1999 to 30 May 1999