Iran General NewsReporters Without Borders calls on the international community to...

Reporters Without Borders calls on the international community to support the Canadian government’s

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Reporters Without Borders: Reporters Without Borders congratulates the Canadian government’s decision to limit its’ diplomatic relations with Iranian authorities to back demands for justice in the case of the murdered Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi. “We call upon the international community and especially the European Union, to support Canada’s actions” declared Reporters Without Borders. Reporters Without Borders

MONTREAL – Reporters Without Borders congratulates the Canadian government’s decision to limit its’ diplomatic relations with Iranian authorities to back demands for justice in the case of the murdered Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi.

“We call upon the international community and especially the European Union, to support Canada’s actions” declared Reporters Without Borders.

Canada’s move comes one day after another short hearing into the case in a Tehran court. Pierre Pettigrew, Minister of Foreign Affairs, declared that Canada would limit formal contacts between the two governments to three subjects; the Kazemi case, Iran’s human rights record and Iran’s nuclear non-proliferation performance.

On Monday, May 16th, 2005, the Tehran appeals court took just one hour to review the case against the agent who’d been accused, and then acquitted, of killing Ms. Kazemi. Lawyers for Ms. Kazemi’s family complained they weren’t allowed to make any represenations during the hearing where the accused wasn’t even present. Journalists who’d attempted to cover the event were also refused access to the courtroom.

Reporters Without Borders also reconfirms it’s support for the proposition earlier made by the Canadian government for an international investigation into Ms. Kazemi’s murder. Canadian authorities have asked the Iranian government to allow three judicial experts, a Canadian, an Iranian and a third representative chosen by both parties, to conduct an autopsy on Zahra Kazemi’s body to determine the cause of death.

Canadian-Iranian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi was arrested on June 23, 2003 as she was taking pictures of prisoners’ families outside the Evin prison north of Tehran. She was beaten in detention, fell into a coma and on June 27, 2003 was taken to the city’s Baghiatollah Hospital, where she died on July 10, 2003. After trying to cover up the cause of death, the authorities admitted on July 16, 2003 that she had been “beaten.” Her body was hastily buried on July 22nd in the southern town of Shiraz. Ms. Kazemi’s mother admitted on July 30th to being pressured into allowing the burial in Iran. Both the Canadian government and Kazemi’s Canadian son, Stephan, have demanded the body be returned to Canada, to no avail.

For further information: Emily Jacquard, (514) 521-4111,
[email protected]

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