Austria / Press
Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Monday, June 22nd 2009

Protest against Iran Seminar of Austrian Chamber of Commerce

STOP THE BOMB announces rally for Tuesday and declares solidarity with Iranian freedom movement

During a seminar on Iran scheduled for June 23 and 24, the Austrian Chamber of Commerce (WKO) plans to show business companies how they can still intensify business ties with Iran despite all EU ad UN sanctions. Simone Dinah Hartmann, spokeswoman of the non-partisan coalition STOP THE BOMB, considers that a completely wrong signal: "While Europe and the new US administration are discussing a broadening of sanctions on a regime that at this very moment tries to brutally crack down on the Iranian population fighting for freedom, Austria marches in a contrary direction." On Tuesday starting from 08:30 am, STOP THE BOMB will demonstrate in front of the Chamber of Commerce building at Stubenring 8 against the plans of Austrian companies to expand their business connections with the Iranian regime while at the same time protestors in Iran are being shot, beaten up, arrested and tortured. In an open letter sent today to the WKO by several of its own members, the undersigned demand the cancellation of the seminar. 

During a visit of the head of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Industries, and Mines (ICCIM), Mohammad Nahavandian, to Vienna in March WKO president Christoph Leitl rejoiced over Austria’s "excellent trade relations" with the Iranian regime. Hiwa Bahrami of the Democratic Party Kurdistan Iran voices his criticism: "It is a stab into the back of the Iranian opposition, which has been fighting for a democratic-constitutional and secular Iran for the last 30 years and which right now is confronted with a massive repression by the Iranian regime when politicians and the Chamber of Commerce alike promote doing business with Iran." 

STOP THE BOMB declares its solidarity with the freedom movement of the Iranian population and thus clearly demands of the Austrian Government and the Parliament to recognize neither the Iran election fraud nor the Iranian regime as such any longer. Instead, they should press for free elections to a sovereign Iranian parliament and provide the protestors with any support needed, such as to open the Austrian embassy in Tehran for people injured or refugees. 

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