Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Free Jamal Newsletter

Newsletter Free Jamal!
Wednesday 31 March 2010

Global day of action for Jamal.
Today, Wednesday 31 March is a global day of action with protests in Vancouver, Toronto, Washington DC, London, Berlin, Frankfurt, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Tokyo. Full reports to follow.
Mission in Japan
Special Rep Farshad Hosseini arrived in Japan on Monday to lobby the Ministry of Justice, UNHCR and Jorge Bustamante, the UN’s special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants. And of course to see and speak with Jamal.

The global day of action for Jamal is coinciding with Mr Bustamante’s press conference in Tokyo to report on the findings of his mission. Farshad spoke at today’s press conference and spoke afterwards with Mr Bustamante and was also interviewed by several journalists on Jamal’s situation and the situation in Iran. Farshad reports that Mr Bustamante’s finding of the situation of migrants in Japan indicates that there are indeed serious issues that need to be addressed by the Japanese government, but more to come on this.

At 12 noon Farshad also attended a protest outside the detention centre in Tokyo where Jamal is held while simultaneously detainees inside protested too. There was another protest in front of the Ministry of Justice.

NB Mr Amemiya, a retired professor has published a book about refugees in Japan and part of the book is about Jamal and his situation. Mr Amemiya has met with Mr Bustamante and has given him the book.
Visit to the Japanese embassy in London
At a follow-up visit to the Japanese embassy in London last week, Bahram Soroush (IFIR) and I saw First Secretary of the embassy Mr Yokote.
He told us that he had contacted the Japanese immigration authorities who are part of the Ministry of Justice in Japan and he said that the ‘experts on Iran’ saw no compelling reason not to deport Jamal. We explained to him the extent of Jamal’s activities and the danger he faces if he were to be returned to Iran. We talked at length about the human rights situation in Iran and Mr Yokote assured us that the Japanese government is aware and concerned about the situation. He stressed that Japan is not like Iran and that Japan is a democratic country. He vehemently denied any underhand dealings with the Iranian regime or any kind of pressure that Japan might be under from Iran. However, the only advice he had for us was to complain via the official channels in Japan. We asked him to relay our demands for Jamal to the Japanese government. We also informed him about the global day of action for Jamal and announced our presence in front of the embassy on 31 March.
Patty Debonitas, London, UK
Reason for Jamal’s asylum application refusal
Farshad Hosseini informed us that Jamal’s asylum application was refused because the Ministry of Justice said that Jamal’s activities in Japan are not important enough for the Islamic Republic of Iran to persecute him if he were going be deported to Iran and also that the party he belongs to, the Worker-communist party of Iran, is neither big nor important enough in Iran for the Islamic regime to have an interest in Jamal. (We beg to differ!)

Farshad Hosseini also informed us about a drive by the Japanese government to deport many asylum seekers without legal position to clear a ‘backlog’. That means that last year alone 100.000 refugees were deported. And another 170.000 are on the list.
Interview with Jamal
We have spoken to Jamal and have an interview with him which will be available soon
Letters of support
Recently, CAW, the National Automobile, Aerospace, Transportation and General Workers Union of Canada, CGT and SUD unions in France, the Iranian-Canadian Centre in Victoria, Canada have all sent letters on behalf of Jamal to their respective Japanese embassies and consulates. The Persian Gay and Lesbian Liberators group in the UK has also sent their full support to the Free Jamal! campaign.

Please keep your letters and messages of support coming. Jamal needs them!
We now have an online petition:
Send protest letter to the Japanese Ministry of Justice and UNHCR in Japan straight from our online site:

We encourage you to also send your letter of protest to your local embassy/consulate. The link for addresses is here:
Other things to do
Suleiman Sigarchi from Canada has visited the office of a Member of Parliament and has also written to all other MPs about Jamal’s case. Please raise the issue with your MP.
Other news
Mission Free Iran, a Washington-based group has staged its second Sunday protest this week in front of the Japanese embassy in Washington DC.

Amnesty International is in touch with Jamal’s lawyer and is checking into his legal situation.

For full info on the campaign and activities please go to our blog:

Patty Debonitas
+44 (0) 750 797 8745

Sunday, 28 March 2010

IS Vacouver's act

Iran Solidarity - Vancouver organises a hang out place (Patog) every Sunday 5 to 7 PM at 672 East Broadway, Vancouver, BC as its act of solidarity.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Iran Solidarity on Trafalgar Square

We from Iran Solidarity UK spoke to people on Trafalgar Square about the case of Jamal Saberi today; an Iranian activist who has been detained in Japan to be deported to Iran. We let them know about the global day of protest on his behalf this coming Wednesday 31 March.

Friday, 26 March 2010

International League of Women's Rights act of solidarity

The International League of Women's Rights (LDIF), an NGO created by Simone de Beauvoir, is popularizing the message the League proclaimed at the foot of the Statue of Liberty by denouncing the Islamic veil as an insult to liberty, regardless of its size, form or color. The following slide show presents the photos taken during this manifestation. They have sent it to Iran Solidarity as an act in support of the women's liberation movement in Iran.

To see the video on youtube, click here.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Siba Shakib's act of solidarity

See filmmaker Siba Shakib's message of solidarity:

THANK YOU!!! Just discovered your page and would like to offer any kind of support.
As a filmmaker and writer all my work and effort is going in the same direction. SEPARATE religion and state, liberate societies from forced religiosity.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Meeting in Stockholm Sweden in solidarity with women in Iran

Independent World Report organised a meeting in Stockholm Sweden today as an act of solidarity with women in Iran. Equal Rights Now Spokesperson, Mahin Alipour, is a speaker at the event.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Global Day of Action against the anti-refugee policies of the Japanese government - 31 March 2010

23 March 2010
Press Release FCJ 1004
The Free Jamal! campaign announces 31 March 2010 a Global Day of Action against Japanese anti-refugee policies to coincide with the end of UN Special Rapporteur Jorge Bustamante’s mission to observe the human rights situation of migrants in the country and his scheduled press conference on that day in Tokyo.

Free Jamal! calls on all members and supporters of the campaign to hold demonstrations in front of Japanese embassies and consulates on 31 March to express their strongest objection at the Japanese government’s treatment of refugees.

Free Jamal! supports the struggle and the demands of thousands who are detained in the prisons of the Japanese Immigration Authorities and are highlighting the treatment of Jamal Saberi - a well-known women, worker and human rights’ activist for the people of Iran - by the Japanese Ministry of justice as a clear example of the unjust behaviour by the Japanese government towards refugees.

Free Jamal! demands the immediate release of Jamal Saberi, the repeal of his deportation order and that Japan must grant him refugee status.

Special representative of the Free Jamal! campaign, Farshad Hosseini, will be present in Tokyo next week to support the Global Day of Action locally.

The Japanese government and its Ministry of Justice should be aware that the whole world is watching their misbehaviour towards refugees and migrants, including Jamal Saberi who has been at the frontline of defending refugee rights in Japan for 18 years.

On 31 March Japanese officials will recognise that intending to deport Jamal Saberi as well as any underhand dealings with the Islamic Republic of Iran will be exposed and will cost Japan dearly as a consequence. The Free Jamal! campaign with all its members and supporters are determined to free Jamal Saberi and to realise all demands.

Hambastegi - International Federation of Iranian Refugees
Free Jamal! campaign: Patty Debonitas
Tel: +44 750 797 8745

Special representative in Japan: Farshad Hosseini
Tel: + 31 681285184

Monday, 22 March 2010

Yagmur Karan's message of solidarity

Iran Solidarity received the following message of solidarity today:

Freedom for all Women!
Yagmur Karan

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Magnus Nielsen's act of solidarity

Magnus did his act today in Trafalgar Square. No photos available.

IS Vancouver's act

Iran Solidarity - Vancouver organises a hang out place (Patog) every Sunday 5 to 7 PM at 672 East Broadway, Vancouver, BC as its act of solidarity.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Iran Solidarity UK's act in Trafalgar Square

Iran Solidarity UK celebrated Iranian New Year in Trafalgar Square today.

To see video footage, click here or see below embedded video:

Friday, 19 March 2010

Iranian New Year with Iran Solidarity UK

Iran Solidarity UK will be celebrating Iranian New Year with music and dance tomorrow, Saturday 20 March, from 12:00 on Trafalgar Square in London. Come and join us!
Contact: email or call 07507978745

Iran Solidarity Toronto's act takes place today

Information to follow.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Leslie Horscroft's act of solidarity with the people of Iran

Leslie Horscroft writes:

Please be assured of my continuing support,
Strength to your arm, The world needs such as you, and yours.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Vince's act of solidarity with the people of Iran

Vince writes:

I totally agree the islamic regime in iran has to be stopped and the leaders thrown behind locked doors or worse. I have also sent the link to all of the people whom I subscribe to on you tube. They are some of the biggest channels on you tube I hope they can help spread the message. Keep up the fight you are NOT ALONE.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Human Rights Watch Film Festival London

presented in association with Article 19’s Iran programme

Davoud Geramifard's stunning documentary brings us the untold story of Iranian secularists through three fascinating characters—each from a distinct social, economic and educational background but all sharing a love for their motherland and a need for a country free from political repression and theocracy. Filmmaker in attendance.

Curzon Soho: Friday 19 March 18.30
ICA: Saturday 20 March 18.00
Ritzy: Sunday 21 March 14.00

presented in association with Brightwide - watch think link act

A personal and understated social commentary, Bahman Ghobadi’s No One Knows About Persian Cats succeeds in opening up a world that few outside of it know, showing that urban-under-30s in Tehran may have more in common with their peers in any big city than people realise.

Ritzy: Saturday 20 March 21.00
ICA: Wednesday 24 March 21.00

Find out more about these and other films.

Ivan Martin's act of solidarity

In his act of solidarity, Ivan Martin writes:

I wish you continued success in the fight for freedom of expression in the intolerable regime of Iran. I would wish to see all religious control and suppression throughout the World defeated, as should all compassionate people. Good luck and very best wishes to you all in your campaign.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Message of solidarity from Pirooz

Here is an email message from Pirooz:

One of the things that makes me a proud Iranian is people like you outside Iran and also those inside who bravely confront the face of evil in the streets of our beloved occupied country Iran. I am grateful to people like you who show the real face of Iranians to the west, for so many years they didn't know the REAL Iranians! I wish you and you campaign the BEST. Let's hope you wake them up before it's too late!!! Love & Bless, Paayandeh IRAN

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Magnus Nielsen's act of solidarity

Writer Magnus Nielsen did his act of solidarity in Trafalgar Square today. No photo available.

IS Vancouver's act

Iran Solidarity - Vancouver organises a hang out place (Patog) every Sunday 5 to 7 PM at 672 East Broadway, Vancouver, BC as its act of solidarity.

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Iran Solidarity UK action including an act against the hejab

Iran Solidarity London held an act of solidarity today. Photos and video footage to follow. Below is video footage of last week's event, where an act included unveiling and throwing the hejab on the floor. You can see the video here on youtube or below:

Friday, 12 March 2010

Iranian activist detained and in danger of imminent deportation to Iran

Hambastegi - International Federation of Iranian Refugees(IFIR)
Press Release
12 March 2010

The International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR) has set up the Free Jamal! 2010 campaign to save the Iranian activist Jamal Saberi (Jalal Amanzadeh Nouei) from deportation to Iran.

IFIR today urged the Japanese government to release Jamal Saberi (Jalal Amanzadeh Nouei) immediately and to revoke his deportation order.

Jamal Saberi (Jalal Amanzadeh Nouei) is a 42-year-old, Iranian born, activist who is a public and outspoken opponent of the theocratic regime in Iran. In 1990 he moved to Japan and since 1992 he has been active in opposing the Islamic Republic of Iran publicly. His political activities and promotion of human rights had brought him to the attention of the Islamic Republic’s authorities. Thus Mr Saberi applied for political asylum in Japan in May 2001 which was refused in May 2002. IFIR was informed by Mr Saberi’s lawyer that he was arrested and detained by the Japanese Immigration Authorities on 4th March 2010 with the intention of deporting him to Iran.

Abdolah Assadi, Executive Director of IFIR said in a statement: ‘We are trying our best to rally the public opinion against the Japanese government and its blatant violation of Jamal’s human rights. We, therefore, hereby declare that as far as we are concerned the Japanese government will be responsible for any harm that, we have no doubt, will jeopardize Jamal Saberi’s life and/or safety.’

The Free Jamal! campaign has organised a day of lobbying Japanese embassies and consulates around the world for Monday, March 15. Its automated online service has already been used by over 400 people to send a letter of protest to the Japanese Ministry of Justice and the UNHCR representation in Japan. In addition several hundred people have sent protest letters to Japanese embassies and consulates across the world.

Free Jamal! campaign organiser Patty Debonitas said today: ‘It’s unbelievable that after having seen what happens to opponents inside Iran anyone would even consider returning someone like Mr Saberi, with his very public profile of opposition, to Iran. People across the world were able to witness the human rights abuses by the Islamic Republic, particularly over the last ten months. I wonder how the Japanese authorities can think it in any way safe or justifiable to return Mr Saberi to Iran. This would no doubt mean certain threat to his life and safety.’

The Free Jamal! campaign has set three goals for its campaign. It wants to get Mr Saberi out of detention immediately and get his deportation order revoked. Patty Debonitas: ‘The next step will be helping him obtaining and leading a normal life. Mr Saberi has been in Japan for twenty years and has applied for asylum 9 years ago. It is time he can feel safe and protected by granting him refugee status.’
Note to Editors:
1) IFIR is an international non-governmental organization with over 42-branches in 16 countries worldwide which advocates promoting and protecting the rights of Iranian refugees and asylum seekers; provides evidentiary support through its Documentation Center; and provides referrals for services.

Contact Free Jamal! Campaign:
Patty Debonitas, London UK
Mobile: +44 (0) 7507978745 Email: Blog:

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Scott Long's message of solidarity from Chicago, USA

Scott send this message to the people of Iran:

The Mullahs hijacked God and called it an Islamic Republic. The darkness seems to be fading and I pray it will come within my lifetime. For thirty years I have waited to have a coffee at the University in Teheran and talk philosophy and matters of faith with the students.

Let the revolution spill into the streets, not in blood, but in the joy of freedom of expression and liberty for all its citizens.

He adds:

I am so sick of tainted souls using God to act Godlessly. The Mullahs in Iran share so much with the Republicans here in the US. A fear based soul produces only ill will, repression and more fear. Such a waste of all those good loving people in Iran. Such a waste of all those young people's minds. Somewhere in Iran, someone may have the answer as to how we can live in the Grace of one God who loves all people of all faiths. Let the people be free. In this may lie our salvation.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

John Neighbour's message of solidarity

I felt that I just had to write you a few lines.

I always read your news-letters and my heart is with you. I have no vested interest, other than believing very much in your cause. However, I am sorry that I have not been more involved. I do not live in London, and although I would have gladly contributed more to your cause, and would have loved to have attended the dinner in aid of your manifesto, but I am a pensioner and don't have much, if anything to spare. All I can give you is my support from my heart.

I am so sorry about what is happening in your country and I hope that things improve. It must be terrible for you having to see what is going on - it's bad enough for me, and I'm a red-haired, green eyed Scot. However, we are all brothers and sisters though, and I look forward to the time that things improve in your country.

I will now access the websites that you've printed below to see exactly what I can do to help.

With the greatest respect for you and your sisters.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Ernestine's act of solidarity from Canada

Ernestine sends the following message as her act of solidarity:

Thanks for keeping the world informed of your bravery and courage as you struggle with this evil force. I live across the world from you (west coast of Canada)...

There are many protests in our country against a number of issues, one of which I'm involved. This is to get our leaders to do what was promised several years ago, which is to get drugs for HIV/AIDs, malaria and TB, sent to Africa for the grandmothers there who are raising their orphaned grandchildren. Many of these children are born with HIV and very possibly will not live past the age of two. I won't bore you with statistics, but we are trying to help these families and without our Government's help it isn't quickly enough.

I wish I had the energy to help with your force. I read daily of the atrocities in Iran and Islamic fundamentalist groups and pray that sooner rather than later the tide will change.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Mehdi Tahriri Masooleh's act of solidarity with the people of Iran

Political activist Mehdi Tahriri Masooleh stands with the people of Iran against the brutal Islamic regime to mark International Women's Day. Mehdi also took part in an act against the veil on the day:

Iran Solidarity in Toronto for Women's Day in day on March 6

International Women's Day in London

Today Iran Solidarity and Equal Rights Now - Organisation against Women's Discrimination in Iran and others celebrated International Women's Day on Trafalgar Square.

At the rally, Nicola from Bari, Italy sent a mesage of solidarity to the people of Iran.

Protestors did an act against veiling, in which women took off their veils, and threw them on the floor.

International Women's Day Vancouver

On Saturday March 6th, 2010 a rally was organized by Iran Solidarity - Vancouver at Art Gallery in Vancouver. The program started with first nation women drumming performing a warrior song. Then Parvin read the Iran Solidarity - Vancouver's women's day statement. Then Fahimeh from "Equal Rights" talked. After her, Amal from Iraq's women's Freedom talked about condition of women in Iraq. A representative from Neda for Freedom, read their women's day statement. Farideh, from BC nurses union talked about the cut backs and violence against women. Iran Solidarity - Vancouver's Choir had its first performance. The lyrics were based on slogans from demonstrations in Iran. The music of the songs composed by local musician, Earle Peach.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Irene Graziotto's act of solidarity with the people of Iran

I got to know your appeal to sign for the Manifesto when I went to a film festival organized at the Faculty of Letters in Siena, Italy.

The woman who introduced the film, "The Lemon tree", dedicated it to Iranian women and gave out copies of the Equal Rights Now Manifesto.

I really liked the film which was about women's dignity and being Italian I am particularly sensitive about this topic due to how Berlusconi is abusing the female concept.

I am deeply aware that the situation in Iran is far more serious but I think that slavery first starts with ideas which then legalizes physical and effective abuse.

To change things it must start from ideas again. As a consequence, I subscribe your Manifesto.

Will you accept also my intellectual and emotional support.

Thank you for what you are doing.

Irene Graziotto
A woman

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Iranian Women's March against Hejab on March 8th, 1979

Less than 3 weeks after Islamic Regime gained power in Iran, it started attacking women rights by enforcing the Hejab and other reactionary Islamic Laws on women. The women's movement reacted and on March 8th, 1979, more than 35 thousands of them came into the streets of Tehran and protested against the Islamic Regime. This documentary film is made by a French film crew and is in French originally which was translated to English by a member of Iran Solidarity - Vancouver.

Women's Movement in Iran 1979-2009

produced and presented by Iran Solidarity Vancouver

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Maryam Namazie's interview on March 8 events

New Jersey's Only FM Progressive Radio Show returns. This week Bob analyzes last Thursday's Health Care Summit...

30 minutes into the show, In our main interview, journalist, activist and correspondant, Eddie Goldman speaks with one of the most noted rights activists in the world, Maryam Namazie.

Originally from Iran but now based in London, Maryam Namazie is a rights activist, and commentator and broadcaster on Iran, rights, cultural relativism, secularism, religion, political Islam, and other related topics. She is spokesperson for Iran Solidarity, Equal Rights Now, the One Law for All Campaign against Sharia Law in Britain, and the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain, along with being active in numerous other organizations.

We discuss the upcoming activities that One Law for All will be having to celebrate International Women's Day. There will be a solidarity action in London on Saturday, March 6, organized by Equal Rights Now and Iran Solidarity, to show solidarity with the women's rights movement in Iran. The Islamic Republic of Iran has imposed a system on women in that country that has been called sexual apartheid, similar to the racial apartheid which existed in South Africa for many decades. There will also be a seminar organized by One Law for All, and involving numerous other organizations, on Sharia Law in Britain, held March 8, which is International Women's Day.

The historic mass struggle to overthrow the brutal Islamic Republic regime in Iran is continuing to grow, and we discuss its prospects for victory. We also explain what those in the U.S. who support it can do to assist it.

Click here to listen to this great show.

Please make sure to support grassroots progressive radio. Follow Bob on Twitter. Visit the website, pass this show along, post this show, send it to radio stations, or do whatever you can to help.

IS 8. März Deutschland - Berlin, Frankfurt

Liebe Freunde,

leider müssen wir euch mitteilen, dass in unserem Plan am 8. März eine Änderung stattgefunden hat.

Gegen unseren Willen, sind wir aus verschiedenen Gründen zum Entschluss gekommen, die Demonstration nach Frankfurt zu verlegen.
Es lag sehr an unseren Herzen eine große und erfolgreiche Demonstration in Berlin zu organisieren, die aber uns leider gelungen ist.

Hiermit möchten wir uns wegen der Unannehmlichkeiten bei allen entschuldigen, die vor hatten an die Demonstration in Berlin teilzunehmen.
Wir entschuldigen uns ins Besondere bei den Referentinnen, die unsere Einladung angenommen hatten und aktiv an unserer Demonstration teilnehmen wollten.

Kontakt: 015781688732 oder 01772535303

Hier ist der Frankfurt Aufruf in deutsch und persisch:

Monday, 1 March 2010

International solidarity with women's struggle in Iran events

Iran Solidarity is marking this year’s International Women’s Day as an International Day of Solidarity with the women’s struggle in Iran.

And what better day than 8th of March to celebrate the women and men in Iran who are fighting for equality, freedom and secularism.

They are are fighting side by side against gender apartheid, inequality and a brutal regime.

If you believe in universal rights, secularism and equality come and join us to show your solidarity with the people of Iran.

Berlin, Deutschland
Die Berlin Demo wurde nach Frankfurt verlegt
und findet am 8.März statt, siehe unter Frankfurt
Kontakt: 015781688732 oder 01772535303

Frankfurt, Deutschland
Montag 8.März um 17:00 Uhr
Demo, Hauptwache (Zeil)

London, UK
Saturday 6 March 2010
Trafalgar Square, North Terrace, London
12:00 - 14:00
Contact: 07507978745 or 07719166731

Vancouver, Canada
Saturday 6 March
1 to 3 pm
South side of Art Gallery, Robson & How street

IS Melbourne forum on the Left and Iran

Dear friends,supporters and curious individuals

Iran Solidarity will be participating in a joint forum with Australian socialist activist group, Socialist Alternative on the topic of “what position the Western Left should take on the situation in Iran”. We will be discussing the situation in Iran in the context of current international developments and power structures and explaining why active support for the Iranian movement for democracy by our friends and allies outside and opposition to war and sanctions against Iran is a matter of principle for anyone who wants to support human rights and democracy in the Middle East.

Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend.

When: 7.30pm, Friday 12th of March

Where: Trades Hall, Corner of Victoria and Lygon Sts, Carlton