I morgon planerar Europaparlamentets Delegation för förbindelserna med Iran att åka på ett officiellt besök till regimen. Jag sitter själv i denna delegation, men ställer mig helt och hållet emot denna resa. Det är för mig helt obegripligt varför Europaparlamentets delegation väljer att genomföra denna resa med tanke på den nuvarande situationen. Därför skickade jag i går ett brev till alla Europaparlamentariker där jag visar min oro för det budskap denna resa sänder till de iranier som har flytt förtrycket och ber mina kollegor att tänka om. Läs gärna mitt brev nedan.
Recently, the EU Foreign Affairs Council decided to sharply increase sanctions against Iran. Our foreign ministers stated that they have serious and deepening concerns over Iran’s nuclear programme and that there is an urgent need for Iran to comply with all its international obligations. Moreover, newly-presented figures from the UN show that the situation for opposition supporters and minorities is deteriorating even further.
However, in the midst of these developments, the European Parliament confirmed that its Delegation for Relations with Iran will make an official visit from 27 October until the 2 of November. There is no secret that this issue has been debated heavily inside the European Parliament. Despite this debate, a decision was taken to send a delegation of about 10 members to Iran. However, the programme of the visit has been outlined by the regime itself. Hence, the programme includes a meeting with the Head of the Human Rights Council, Mr Mohammad Javad Larijani, a man who has instigated arrests of several human rights lawyers fighting for a free Iran. I ask my colleagues to see the absurdity in meeting with this man but not with the ones who truly deserve our help and support.
I am clearly not one of those who are
heading east, as I think it is highly inappropriate to go to Iran at this point in time. This is the time to stay on the same page in regards to our policy vis-à-vis Iran. Sending an official delegation signals instead that the European Parliament is of another opinion than that of the 27 Foreign Ministers. At least, that is how the Iranian regime will portrait the visit,
not to mention the message it sends to all our European citizens with Iranian background who have fled the regime’s atrocious oppression to find freedom and democracy here in the European Union.
The European Parliament’s official delegation visits shall serve the purpose of strengthening relations between the EU and the government in question as a token of recognition of political reform and positive developments. Visiting Iran at this point confuses the European public as well as the few Iranian opposition leaders that are presently trying to survive under the regime’s radar in Iran.
I urge my colleagues in the European Parliament to think again and change the decision.
Member of the European Parliament, EPP Sweden
Substitute to the Delegation for Relations with Iran