Archiv für den Tag 28. Oktober 2013

Opposition to a Deal – The Gulf / Israel / Congress

Robin Wright and Garrett Nada

            The new diplomacy between Iran and the world’s six major powers faces growing opposition from key players in the Middle East, including the oil-rich and influential Gulf states. The Sunni sheikhdoms are nervous the Shiite theocracy will do a deal on its nuclear program that leaves Tehran with a residual capability to eventually build a bomb, either by retaining basic knowledge of a weapons program or controlling the pivotal fuel production for a weapon.
            More broadly, however, Saudi Arabia and the smaller monarchies fear that a diplomatic deal will allow rival Iran to shed its pariah status and reemerge as the Gulf powerhouse—to their disadvantage. Iran’s split with the West after the 1979 revolution had increased the influence of Saudi Arabia particularly as an alternative pillar of U.S. policy. A deal on Iran’s nuclear program could in turn lead to rapprochement with Washington that would diminish Gulf leverage.
            Tensions between Iran and its Gulf neighbors have not eased despite new President Hassan Rouhani’s call for improving relations between Tehran and Riyadh. “We are not only neighbors, we are brothers,” he said shortly after his election in June. “We have had very close relations, culturally, historically and regionally.” He emphasized this point in a tweet following his October 15 call with Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani.
            But suspicions remain deep. After the Iranian and Saudi foreign ministers met this fall, Prince Saud al Faisal was openly skeptical. “What we want now is to see that desire materialize on the ground,” he said. “They preach what they do not practice, and practice what they do not say.” Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Photo Essay: A New Mood in Iran

bySemira Nikou 

 
            The voice of Ali Larijani, Iran’s parliament speaker, disrupted our dinner party.
            We left our plates filled with fruits and nuts to huddle around the television, as the speaker read the names of President Hassan Rouhani’s cabinet picks one by one, announcing whether or not each had been approved by the parliament. One of the guests, a journalist, let out a sigh of relief with Bijan Namdar Zangeneh’s approval as petroleum minister. Zanganeh, who had served in the same position under former President Mohammad Khatami’s reformist administration from 1997 to 2005, was a key candidate whose nomination had been hotly challenged by Iran’s conservative parliament.
            With parliament ultimately approving 15 out of the 18 proposed ministers, the administration of hope—as Rouhani’s presidency is referred to—had delivered a competent cabinet. Now we could eat.
            There is a new mood in Iran. I recently visited Tehran in August 2013, four years after my last trip in June 2009. Much has changed since.  The Iran of 2009 and the Iran of 2013 are two different places. Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

New video documents Iranian government’s sponsored violence against its own Baha’is citizens

Parva Rahmanian and her family used to run a flower shop in Iran – until the government revoked their business license.

The reason given was simple: as Baha’is, they were „unclean“ – and so were their floral designs. The uncleanliness of the Baha’is was, to the world’s great shock and outrage, the subject of a recent fatwa by the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.

„We received a letter from the Justice Bureau saying that as a florist one’s hands get wet while decorating flowers, and given that Baha’is are considered unclean by the high-ranking clerics…, the work permit was revoked,“ says Ms. Rahmanian in a new video released today by the Baha’i International Community.

Ms. Rahmanian’s story is one of many personal accounts of persecution faced by Iranian Baha’is featured in the 17-minute video, which is titled „Violence with Impunity“ and is available on the BIC’s YouTube channel.

The new production, which is available in English and Persian, is based in part on a recent report of the BIC with the same title, which was released in March. However, the video also features numerous new interviews done over the last six months in the United States and Europe.

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  • Parva Rahmanian, one of the people interviewed in the video.

„This new video takes the dramatic statistics documented in our earlier report and illustrates them with personal accounts of what it means to live in a country where the very authorities that are supposed to protect your rights are the ones behind your oppression,“ said Diane Ala’i, a representative of the Baha’i International Community to the United Nations in Geneva.

Naim Sobhani, for example, describes what it was like as a child growing up in Iran and having to face vilification from teachers.

“ ‚These Bahai’s are dirty, they are unethical, they are unclean non-believers, do not dine with them, do not socialize with them, do not befriend them,'“ he recounts his teachers as saying. „As a child in the elementary school, hearing the teacher saying this sort of things in a classroom to your classmates in the class,“ said Mr. Sobhani, who now lives in the United States.

Also featured are several human rights activists.

Mahnaz Parakand, an attorney who defended Baha’is before having to flee Iran herself, talks about how the government uses false charges of espionage to prosecute and imprison Baha’is.

„The only reason they cite for espionage on the part of the Baha’is is that the shrines of the great figures of the Baha’i Faith are located in Israel, which are considered sites of pilgrimage for the Baha’is,“ said Ms. Parakand.

„As a Muslim, when I go to Saudi Arabia for pilgrimage, does the mere fact that the House of God, the Kaaba, is located in Saudi Arabia mean all Muslims in the world could be spying for Saudi Arabia in their native countries?“ she said.

Karim Lahidji, president of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), says Iran’s policy has been „to increase the pressure on the Bahai community so that in the best case scenario they would relinquish their beliefs.“

The original report documents a rising tide of violence directed against the Iranian Baha’i community – and the degree to which attackers enjoy complete impunity from prosecution or punishment.

From 2005 through 2012, for example, there were 52 cases where Baha’is have been held in solitary confinement, and another 52 incidents where Baha’is have been physically assaulted. Some 49 incidents of arson against Baha’i homes and shops, more than 30 cases of vandalism, and at least 42 incidents of cemetery desecration were also documented.

Quelle: BAHAI

Abschiebungshaft in Bayern vor dem Aus

Landgericht München kritisiert bisherige Praxis - Bundesweite Folgen erwartet 

Abschiebungshaft in Bayern in ihrer jetzigen Form steht vor dem Aus. Das 
Landgericht München 11 hat einen eritreischen Flüchtling, der nach Italien
zurückgeschoben werden soll, gestern freigelassen: Denn in seiner Inhaftierung 
in der Justizvollzugsanstalt München­ Stadelheim sahen die Richter einen 
Verstoß gegen EU-Recht. Dieses schreibt vor, dass Ausländer, die abgeschoben 
werden sollen, nicht gemeinsam mit Strafgefangenenfestgehalten werden dürfen. 

"Diese Entscheidung ist ein Durchbruch für Flüchtlinge und Migranten, die sich 
ja keiner Straftat schuldig gemacht haben und trotzdem wie Kriminelle behandelt 
werden", sagt Dieter Müller SJ, Seelsorger beim Jesuiten-Flüchtlingsdienst in 
München. Er rechnet mit weiteren Entlassungen in den nächsten Tagen. "Wir haben 
in den letzten Wochen etwa 35 vergleichbare Fälle an Anwälte vermittelt." 
In einem weiteren Verfahren hat der Bundesgerichtshof bereits die einstweilige 
Freilassung eines Flüchtlings angeordnet. 

Auf die Rechtswidrigkeit der Praxis in Bayern und in vielen anderen Bundesländern 
weist der Jesuiten­ Flüchtlingsdienst seit 2010 hin. Damals trat eine EU-Richtlinie 
in Kraft, die Mindeststandards für den Umgang mit Ausreisepflichtigen regelt Diese 
sogenannte Rückführungsrichtlinie bestimmt, dass Abschiebungsgefangene grundsätzlich 
in speziellen Einrichtungen untergebracht werden sollen. Eine Inhaftierung in 
normalen Gefängnissen ist nur dann erlaubt wenn ein Mitgliedstaat nicht über solche 
Einrichtungen verfügt. "Als Seelsorger stellen wir immer wieder fest, wie stark die 
Betroffenen unter der Stigmatisierung leiden, wie Verbrecher behandelt zu werden" 
so Müller. 

Deutschland verfügt nur über wenige gesonderte Abschiebungshaftanstalten, so in 
Berlin, Brandenburg und Rheinland-Pfalz. Die Richtlinie wird jedoch bisher so 
ausgelegt, dass jedes Bundesland eigenständig entscheidet, wie es Abschiebungshaft 
praktiziert. An dieser Auslegung hatte der Bundesgerichtshof im Juli erhebliche 
Zweifel geäußert und die Frage dem Europäischen Gerichtshof in Luxemburg 
vorgelegt. "Zwar steht das Urteil noch aus, aber die Bundesländer müssen jetzt schon 
reagieren", fordert Heiko Habbe, Jurist beim Jesuiten-Flücht!ingsdienst "Die 
rechtswidrige Haft in normalen Gefängnissen muss beendet werden. Stattdessen 
müssen die Bundesländer endlich Alternativen für die Unterbringung entwickeln. 
die ohne Freiheitsentzug auskommen." Mehrere tausend Menschen werden bundesweit 
jährlich in Abschiebungshaft genommen, weil sie Deutschland verlassen müssen. 
Nach Schätzungen von Seelsorgern und Beratern in der Abschiebungshaft sind 60 bis 
80 Prozent der Betroffenen Asylsuchende, bei denen noch nicht 
entschieden ist, ob Deutschland oder ein anderer EU-Staat für ihren 
Asylantrag zuständig ist. "Diese Menschen suchen Schutz in Europa. und wir sperren 
sie ein", kritisiert Habbe. 

Quelle: Jesuiten-Flüchtlingsdienst
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