June 16, 2008
The joint resolution calls upon the international community to condemn the repression and persecution of ethnic and religious minorities in Iran, furthermore it request the UN General Secretary to initiate an fact finding mission to Iran.
Below is a Member Resolution as presented and adopted before the IX UNPO General Assembly held during 16-17 May 2008 in Brussels, Belgium:
IX UNPO General Assembly
16 - 17 May 2008, Brussels Belgium
Joint Member Resolution
The Ahwazi Arab, Azeri Turk, Balochi and Kurdish nation members of UNPO on Behalf of the Congress of Nationalities for a Federal Iran
The use of Arabic, Azeri, Balochi and Kurdish languages in schools and publications has been strictly prohibited even in their own regions. No cultural institutions or activities are tolerated among the non-Persians nationalities. Only Persian history is taught as “Iranian” history, never the history of other national groups.
The rights of Iranian Sunnis in general are restricted by the provisions of Article 115, which excluded Sunnis from holding the office of the Presidency of the Republic, thus reducing Sunnis to the status of second-class citizens.
Not only do Tehran and other major Iranian cities remain without a Sunni mosque, but after the 1978-1979 revolution Sunni mosques in Mashhad, Salmas, and Shahinzadeh were destroyed, and those in Shiraz, Orumieh, Sanadaj, Saqqez, and Miyandoab were closed.
The UNPO General Assembly,
Underlines that Iran is a multi-ethnic, multinational and multilingual country, composed of Turks, Persians, Arabs, Kurds, Baloch, Turkmen and others;
Notes that the 1/3 Persian minority has ruled this country since 1925, the result of which is that today’s Iran faces a cultural and linguistic apartheid;
Notes that in this non-homogenous country, an attempt is being made to artificially turn Iran into a nation-state, a decision made by the Persian elite-aristocracy and the ultra-nationalists, at the exclusion of all other constituent national and ethnic groups;
Notes that successive governments have continued the pursuit of a centralized national-state at the exclusion of others, leaving national minorities (Azeri-Turks, Arabs, Kurds, Baloch, Turkmen, and others), along with the women of Iran, as the most discriminated segments of society;
Emphasises that there is a great deal of national awakening taking place among the non-dominant national minorities, as a result of revolution in communication technology and globalization;
Noting that the advent of the internet and emergence of satellite TV had played an instrumental role in this national and irreversible process of self-awakening;
Emphasising that while the Iranian ruling mullahs are unwilling and incapable of addressing the root causes of instability which is the exclusion of 2/3 non-Persian national groups, there is the realization that although Azeri Turks, Kurds, Arabs, Baloch, and Turkmen, who are subjected to more or less the same repression and persecution, cannot alone change the situation, but together and in cooperation they are capable of this task. It is for this reason that the leading political parties representing these nationalities came together to form the Congress of Nationalities for Federalism in February 2005 in London;
Noting that the Congress believes that it is the responsibility of all these nationalities to decide, with equal voice, the future of Iran and to solve the chronic internal crisis brought about by successive dictatorships;
Underlining that the Congress’ mission is to energize its critical masses to bring about a peaceful change of the current regime in Iran. Its vision is to establish a peaceful, stable and secure country and a democratic, secular civil society by strengthening relations among various national and religious groups within Iran and promoting democracy, social justice, federalism, rule of law, human rights, equal rights for women and protection of the rights of all ethnic and religious minorities including Baha’is, Christians, Jews, Mandanis, Zoroastrians and Sunnis. Under CNFI’s vision, future Iran will be a responsible country and a good member of the International Community;
Noting that whilst each nationality believes in its inalienable right to self determination and does not want to forgo or forfeit this right, but that faced with the UN and the internationally community that does not necessarily share this view of the basic fundamental right of self determination, and that as a pragmatic entity, the Congress believes that all nationalities in Iran want and have the desire to live side by side in a federal or in a nonfederal system of governance;
Noting that CNFI hopes for a democratic, peaceful, secular and federal Iran, and a responsible member of the International Community;
Noting that where all Iran’s constituent national and ethnic groups unite together to chart the future course of Iran, this will present a serious challenge to the Islamic Republic of Iran, presently oppressing its peoples and presenting a danger to the peace and security of the region and the world;
Noting that the Congress believes that this is the only way out of the current crisis in Iran, and that other choices, such as the status quo, are unsustainable or face an uncertain future;
Noting that Congress members will not participate in any socio-economic experience that does not guarantee them the right of self determination – internal or external – as enshrined and guaranteed by international law;
Therefore, we urge The UNPO General Assembly to:
1. Condemn the repression and persecution of ethnic and religious minorities in Iran;
2. Request the UN General Secretary to initiate an investigation and dispatch a fact finding mission to the areas of al-Ahwaz (Khuzestan), Kurdistan, Balochistan and Azerbaijan to look into the issues of ethnic cleansing and serious human rights violations.
Submitted by Ahwazi and Baloch nation members of UNPO on behalf of the Congress of Nationalities for a Federal Iran.
Organizations: Democratic Solidarity Party of Ahwaz, Ahwaz Human Rights Organization, Balochistan People’s Party and Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran.
To download the Member Resolution, please click here. (PDF format, 134kb)