Stop Deportation of Stockholm’s Asylum-Seeking Kurds

Iranian Refugees Action Network asks you to support these Iranian refugees who are at risk of execution if they are forced to return to Iran.  Please sign the petition to stop their deportation from Stockholm, Sweden: They are on hunger strike after threats to force them to return to Iran, where they fled because of persecution:

Iranian Refugee in Sweden Facing Deportation

The petition is available here, at http://www.change.org/petitions/sweden-stop-deportation-of-refugees-facing-execution-in-iran Twenty asylum-seeking Kurds, who are facing persecution and possible execution in Iran, have gone on hunger strike in a tent in Stockholm in protest of the Swedish Migration Board’s decision to have them deported. The men, women and children went on strike on the 20th of September – five days later the strike turned into a hunger strike. They are political activists who have worked hard for human rights and for introducing democracy in Iran. As a result of their activities and their membership in various Kurdish political parties, they were forced to flee Iran and take refuge in Sweden. Despite having been in the country for the past 1-8 years, and despite having photos and documents from the Nations High Commissioner for Refugees that confirm the obvious threat to their lives, the Migration Board has rejected their applications to stay in Sweden. In the mean time, their condition is deteriorating for every hour that passes – five men have already collapsed from hunger and been taken to the hospital, and another has sewn his lips shut. Before doing so he had stated:

“I am not treated as a human being. Most of us here have the same problem. The Migration Board does not understand our situation, they refuse to listen. We want to know why we have been refused a residence permit. Everybody here would rather die of starvation than be sent back.”

“We have begged and shouted, but the Migration Board has not listened. Now we will silence our voices, perhaps then they will listen”.

Graphic images cover the exterior of the tent, including a photo of a Kurdish teacher in Iran, Farzad Kamangar, surrounded by some twenty children. One of the refugees explains that Farzad was executed three months ago for having taught the children to read and speak Kurdish. Another picture shows Shirin Alanholi who was killed because she wanted freedom and democracy in Iran.

The Iranian regime’s new directives under Article 7 of the Iranian Penal code, namely the detention and prosecution of political refugees who return to Iran, mean that anyone who has applied for asylum on political grounds can be prosecuted. A spokesperson at the Migration Board would not comment on individual cases but said that they are aware of the hunger strike. “With regard to Iran specifically, it is about half of all applicants that are granted a residence permit. We are trying to lean towards granting residence permits”. Sweden has repeatedly made unlawful deportations. Only last year, a European Court in Strasbourg ruled that Sweden’s deportation of an Iranian was in violation of Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Sweden must stop deporting asylum-seeking refugees to Iran !

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