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  • #61
    Asylum is granted to Iranian dissident

    An Iranian man who had been living in Japan illegally and was engaged in activities opposing the government in Tehran was granted refugee status Tuesday by the Tokyo District Court.

    The ruling nullified decisions made in 2002 by the justice minister to reject the man's request for asylum and by immigration authorities to deport him. The man, 38, is a member of Iran's communist party.

    "The man has been actively participating in activities against the Iranian government in Japan and there is a danger of persecution if he returns to his country," said presiding Judge Toshihiko Tsuruoka. "Decisions such as not recognizing the man as a refugee are illegal."

    The courts rarely recognize claims for refugee status based on applicants' activities in Japan, according to the man's supporters.

    The Justice Ministry's Immigration Bureau said it will decide whether to appeal "after thoroughly examining the content of the ruling."

    The man applied for refugee status in May 2001, but his request was rejected when the justice minister decided to deport him because an application for refugee status should be filed within 60 days of entry.



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    • #62
      Iranian American Political Action Committee Releases Scorecard for 109TH Congress

      Scorecard lets Iranian Americans know where their representatives stand on civil liberty and immigration related issues

      Washington, DC — To inform the public about where members of Congress stand on domestic policies important to the Iranian American community, the Iranian American Political Action Committee (IAPAC) has compiled a scorecard that outlines how they have voted on legislation during the 109th Congress.

      "This scorecard is a vital tool for rating members of Congress on votes important to the Iranian American community in the 109th Congress," said IAPAC Political Director Morad Ghorban. "With legislative attempts to curb Iranian immigration and citizenship in the 109th Congress and other critically important votes to our community rated in this scorecard, we would encourage all Iranian Americans to review the scorecard and know where your members of Congress stand on issues of civil rights and immigration."

      The scorecard examines votes and positions for only the 2005 and 2006 legislative sessions, and does not in any way reflect each individual's voting record in the past. The scorecard is merely one of many tools used by IAPAC to identify potential candidates to support, and it does not indicate IAPAC's approval or disapproval of the candidates in question. The candidates who receive contributions from IAPAC have an exceptional track record on the domestic issues of importance to the Iranian American community, have articulated a readiness to engage and work with Iranian Americans, represent a large Iranian American constituency, or are in a position to have influence over the domestic legislative issues of concern to the community.



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      • #63
        Iran to pay incentives to attract tourists -


        TEHRAN, Iran - Iran will offer cash incentives to travel agencies to encourage Western tourists to visit the country, giving a premium for Americans, the official Islamic Republic News Agency reported.



        The Islamic republic's political leadership has been trying to reach out to ordinary Americans to show that a standoff over Iran's nuclear ambitions is with the Bush administration — not U.S. citizens.

        The latest initiative comes as the United Nations Security Council deliberates a draft resolution that would impose sanctions on Iran for its disputed nuclear program.

        "Iran's tourism department will pay $20 per person to those who attract European or American tourists to the country," the agency on Tuesday quoted Mohammed Sharif Malakzadeh, deputy head of the department, as saying.

        Visitors from other countries would earn travel agents $10 per tourist, Malakzadeh said.

        Last week, Iran's fiercely anti-U.S. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed opposition to a bill that would require Americans to be fingerprinted on arrival in Iran.

        The bill, which passed a preliminary reading in the Iranian parliament earlier this month, was drafted by conservatives who sought to retaliate for U.S. requirements that Iranian visitors be fingerprinted. It has not been debated yet.

        The U.S. measure, which also applies to nationals of some other countries, was implemented in 2002 in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.

        In an earlier attempt to reach out to Americans, Ahmadinejad in January proposed the resumption of direct commercial flights between Iran and the United States, which were halted more than 25 years ago.

        The United States and Iran have not had diplomatic relations since Iranian militants stormed the American Embassy in Tehran in 1979.

        The atmosphere between the two countries improved marginally under former President Mohammad Khatami, who encouraged sports and cultural exchanges, but it deteriorated after the Sept. 11 attacks, when President Bush declared that Iran belonged to an "axis of evil" with Iraq and North Korea.

        Since taking office last year, Ahmadinejad has widened the gap with Washington by taking a hard-line position on Iran's nuclear program and calling for Israel's destruction.



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        • #64
          Iranian Women in Exile Finding Voices Through Literature

          Washington -- Women of Persian heritage living in the United States and elsewhere are seizing upon the opportunity to tell their own stories, taking advantage of new freedoms and an increased feeling of comfort in their new societies, and the literary world in turn has begun to respond with interest.

          Persis Karim, associate professor of English and comparative literature at San Jose State University in California, said that in the past five years to six years there has been “an explosion” of memoirs written by women of Iranian heritage that discuss the loss and nostalgia from having to leave their home country, as well as taboo topics such as sexuality and love.

          Speaking at the University of Maryland November 2, Karim attributed the surge of activity in the United States to “a real desire for people to narrate their own story, and a curiosity on the part of Americans -- readers and publishers -- to know something about Iranian women in particular.”

          Women in the Iranian Diaspora are “remak[ing] themselves anew,” and Karim said they feel more of an urgency than men to represent themselves to the outside world. She said this stems in part from a reaction to the media’s depiction of Iranian women concealed by veils and seemingly without a voice. But they also want to represent themselves “because they, in some ways, never had that opportunity.”

          Karim said the freedom in the Diaspora to write without censorship “is a really important part” of the new wave of literature, and in her compilation, Let Me Tell You Where I Have Been, she includes poems and stories by women written without the knowledge or approval of their families, including topics that explore wide-ranging sexual themes that are typically restricted in Iran’s conservative, traditional culture.

          “[W]hat’s exciting and interesting about it is people are writing about sexuality and marriage and love in ways that are very difficult, particularly at the present moment, to write about in Iran,” she said. “It’s a very interesting moment in terms of the literature.”

          These women are asking “hard questions about American culture and about Iranian culture,” and Karim said “they’re willing to do it in writing and I think obviously, with the issue of censorship not being there, it affords them some of those opportunities.”

          PATRIARCHAL CULTURE SEEN AS INHIBITING DEMOCRACY

          Marjane Satrapi, a graphic novelist living in France, has achieved tremendous international recognition, especially for her book, Persepolis, which tells the story of her life in revolutionary and wartime Iran. (See related article.)

          Her book Embroideries concerns the situation of women and the topic of sex in Iran, which she describes as “a big taboo in any country in which you don’t have democracy.” Satrapi was speaking in a Washington bookstore October 31.

          Among other themes in Embroideries, she discusses the issue of virginity and the cultural importance and pressure that it places on women.

          “[It] is the first key to the open door of freedom and democracy because until this problem is solved, of course we cannot talk about democracy,” she said, explaining that she was seeking to discuss “in a nonaggressive way” the right of women to enjoy sexual gratification.

          “I really certainly believe that the biggest enemy of democracy is the patriarchal culture,” Satrapi said. Authoritarian and oppressive leaders cannot stop democracy, she argued, but the culture can. In many countries, “half of the society is repressed by the other half of the society,” and it is often enforced through popular notions that women are less intelligent than men or are too sensitive by nature to accomplish what men can.

          Democracy is “an evolution,” she said. In Iran, although women “have half of the rights of the men,” 70 percent of Iranian students are women. Satrapi suggested change could occur when educated women become economically independent, but until then “our government is really not representative of us.”

          LIFE IN EXILE CREATES BOTH NOSTALGIA AND CREATIVE OPPORTUNITIES

          Karim said Iranian Americans are beginning “to write themselves back into the narrative” of the recent events in Iran, and their work is marked by a confidence in English language expression.

          “What I see coming through in the writing is a real attempt to grapple with how one situates oneself between that culture in Iran and the United States and/or other countries,” she said. Many younger Iranian Americans are claiming their cultural heritage, but are “also recognizing that they do stand outside of it to some degree.”

          Simultaneously, she said, there is “a whole generation of young people growing up in the United States who are influenced and interested in Iranian culture and who are trying to find ways to address that interest.”

          Karim said life in the United States, a country of immigrants, has created what she termed “hybrid literature.” The situation of living in a new place gives space for people to “reinvent themselves and maybe revisit their traditions and create new bodies of knowledge based on the experience of immigration.”

          It also creates room to depart from the burden of tradition, addressing the writers’ desire to “create something new, with a new language, [and] a new experience.”

          Literature by Iranian-American women is also “part of a conversation that’s much bigger than just the United States,” she said, because Iranians now are living all over the world.

          “I think that that inability to comfortably go back to Iran without problems or concerns, or feeling somewhat cut off from that ability to have regular engagement with the culture … makes people want to talk about it and write about it and see themselves in some relationship to it,” she said.



          Comment


          • #65
            Iranian family gets 1-month stay extension

            The Justice Ministry extended permission Friday to members of an Iranian family that have long overstayed their visas, allowing them to remain in Japan for another month while awaiting a decision expected soon from the justice minister as to whether they can receive special residency permission.

            Amineh Khalil, 43, of Takasaki, Gunma Prefecture, his wife Farokhi Akram, 39, their daughters, Maryam, 18, a third-year high school student, and Shahrzad, 10, a fourth-year primary school student, are facing deportation following a ruling by the Supreme Court made last month.

            The family appeared at the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau on Friday, the cutoff date for their extended stay.

            Khalil first came to Japan in 1990, with his family following a year later. In 1999, they went to the immigration bureau to seek special residency permission, but the bureau turned them down and filed an action to deport them.



            Comment


            • #66
              هفته گذشته یک سازمان خیریه که کارش حمایت از پناهجویان و پناهندگان است، با برگزاری پنج برنامه در پنج شب، هم به شناساندن عده ای از هنرمندان خارجی که عمدتا پناهنده هستند پرداخت و هم مسایل مربوط به پناهجویان را به اشکال مختلف مانند تئاترو سخنرانی مطرح کرد.

              شب اول و دوم به اجرای نمایشی اختصاص داشت به نام "تمساح خواهان پناهندگی است". این نمایش در واقع مجموعه ایست از نوشته های 5 پناهجو در بریتانیا و تجربیات آنها از زندگی در این کشور. این پناهجویان از آفریقا، آمریکای لاتین، عراق و ایران هستند. نمایشنامه "تمساح خواهان پناهندگی است" مسایل پناهجویان را در قرن 21 با ظرافت مورد بررسی می کند.

              شب سوم به برنامه های متنوعی از هنرمندان کشورهای مختلف اختصاص داده شده بود. گروه طبل نوازان آفریقایی، موسیقی چینی، رقص هندی، فیلیپینی، آفریقایی و.... موسیقی و آواز ایرانی و همینطور هنرنمایی جلیل امیدی، هنرپیشه و کمدین ایرانی.

              امید جلیلی مدتیست که تبدیل به چهره شناخته شده ای برای انگلیسی ها شده. او با طنزی بسیار قوی و اجرایی که مخصوص خودشه داستانهایی در مورد ایرانی ها و سایر خارجی های ساکن انگلستان تعریف می کنه که خیلی خنده دار و در عین حال با مفهومه.


              امید جلیلی

              اما در کنار امید جلیلی دو هنرمند دیگر ایرانی هم در این برنامه شرکت داشتند. یکی پروانه فرید، که درزمینه هنرهای تجسمی و آواز فعال است و دیگری، ایمان بشری آهنگساز و نوازنده پیانو. پروانه در 17 سالگی ایران را ترک کرد و در انگلستان پناهنده شد و تحصیلاتش رو در همینجا به پایان برد و در حال حاضر در هر دو زمینه هنری یعنی هم خوانندگی و هم هنرهای تجسمی کار می کنه.

              در شب برنامه پروانه فرید به همراهی پیانوی ایمان بشری، سه تا آهنگ خواند. توضیحات بیشتر در مورد این آهنگ ها رواز زبان خود ایمان:

              آهنگ اولی که اجرا کردیم قطعه ای بود به نام پشت این دیوار باغیست که این قطعه رو دو سه سال پیش ساختم. قطعه بعدی قطعه جان مریم بود که قبلا آقای محمد نوری خونده بودن و قطعات دیگه ای که توی این مراسم اجرا کردیم قطعات فولکلورایرونی بودن که خواننده اونها خانم پروانه فرید بودن.

              من مدتها توی این فکر بودم که موسیقی ایرونی رو با اپرا تلفیق کنم. و آهنگ اولی رو که توی اون مراسم اجرا کردیم اصلا به این قصد ساخته بودم که با همکاری خانم پروانه تونستیم این کارو انجام بدیم.

              سئوال آخرم هم ازایمان بشری در مورد خودش بود و اینکه سابقه کارش چیه:

              من موسیقی رو از سن چهار سالگی در کارگاه موسیقی وابسته به رادیو و تلویزیون شروع کردم. یک سال بعد شروع به آموختن پیانو کردم و پیش استادان مختلف، به مدت ده سال کار کردم. موسیقی ایرانی روهم از همون سن شش سالگی در خدمت خانم خاطره پروانه شروع کردم. در سن هفده هجده سالگی، وارد ارکستر مجلسی تلویزیون شدم و در کنار موسیقی به عکاسی هم علاقمند شده بودم و مدت ده ساله که عکاسی خبرنگاری انجام میدم.





              Comment


              • #67
                وزيران داخله ايالات ۱۶ گانه آلمان توافق کرده اند به خارجيانی که بيش از ۶ تا ۸ سال در المان بدون تکليف بسر می برند، در صورت داشتن محل کار، اجازه اقامت و کار بدهند.
                در آلمان حدود ۱۹۰ هزار خارجی بدون اجازه اقامت زندگی می کنند که شمار قابل توجهی از آنان ايرانی هستند. اين توافق برای واجدين شرايط فوری قابل اجرا است ولی دولت در نظر دارد يک قانون کلی و گسترده تر در اين زمينه به پارلمان ارائه کند.

                توافق مقام های ايالتی آلمان در راستای تلاش هايی است که دولت ائتلافی آلمان اخيرا برای تعين تکليف ده ها هزار خارجی که سالهای طولانی است بدون داشتن اجازه اقامت معتبر در اين کشور زندگی می کنند، انجام داده است.

                رئيس کنفرانس وزرای داخله آلمان روز جمعه (۱۷ نوامبر)، در پی نشست دو روزه مقام های ايالتی اعلام کرد که اين توافق در حال حاضر می تواند شامل بين ۳۰ تا ۵۰ هزار از حدود دويست هزار خارجی بدون تکليف ساکن آلمان شود.

                بر اين اساس کسانی که همراه با خانواده هستند و حد اقل شش سال در آلمان زندگی کرده اند و نيز افراد مجرد که حداقل ۸ سال ساکن اين کشور بوده اند، می توانند فورا در خواست کسب اقامت کنند، مشروط بر اينکه دارای کار بوده و يا گواهی اشتغال به کار در آينده نزديک را ارائه دهند.


                کسانی که همراه با خانواده هستند و حد اقل شش سال در آلمان زندگی کرده اند و نيز افراد مجرد که حداقل ۸ سال ساکن اين کشور بوده اند، می توانند فورا در خواست کسب اقامت کنند، مشروط بر اينکه دارای محل کار بوده و يا گواهی اشتغال به کار در آينده نزديک را ارائه دهند



                کسانی که 'سربار' نيستند، بمانند

                به افرادی که اين شرايط را دارند، تا ۳۰ سپتامبر سال 2007 ميلادی فرصت داده شده تا در پی يافتن کار باشند.

                در حاليکه وزيران داخله ايالات در حدود حوزه مسئوليت و اختيارات خود به اين توافق دست يافتند، دولت مرکزی هم در نظر دارد يک راه حل کلی و قانونی در اين مورد پيدا کند؛ راه حلی که هنوز با اختلاف نظرهايی ميان رهبران دولت ائتلافی سوسيال دموکرات و دموکرات- مسيحی روبروست.

                قاعده تازه فعلا فقط شامل کسانی می شود که بگفته مقام های آلمانی 'سربار' هزينه های نظام تامين های اجتماعی نباشند و بتوانند بدون کمک دولت هزينه خود و خانواده هايشان را تامين کنند.

                بخش بزرگی از خارجيانی که اين توافق شامل حالشان می شود، شهروندان يوگسلاوی سابق هستند که بر اثر جنگ های داخلی به آلمان پناه آورده ولی از اجازه اقامت کامل برخوردار نيستند.

                همچنين به نظر می رسد شمار قابل توجهی از خارجيان ديگر، از جمله ايرانيانی که درخواست پناهندگی آنها رد شده اما از آلمان اخراج نشده اند، نيز از مزايای اين توافق و قانونی که قرار است در آينده تصويب شود برخوردار شوند.





                Comment


                • #68
                  بر مبنای توافق وزیران کشور ایالات آلمان از روز دوشنبه 20 نوامبر حدود 20 هزار نفر از خارجیان بلا تکلیف در آلمان می توانند تقاضای دریافت اجازه اقامت رسمی خود را به ادارات مربوط ارائه دهند.
                  در آلمان در حال حاضر بیش از 5 هزار ایرانی در حال بلا تکلیفی و اجازه موقت زندگی می کنند ، این در حالی است که در سال های اخیر حدود 70 هزار ایرانی موفق شدند شهروندی آلمان را کسب کنند.

                  بر اساس توافق میان وزیران کشور ایالات آلمان فدرال که هفته گذشته حاصل شده است حدود 20 هزار نفر از مجموع 190 هزار خارجیانی که در حال بی تکلیفی و غالبا با نوعی اقامت موقت و لرزان موسوم به " دولدونگ" به معنی " تحمل" در آلمان ساکن هستند از روز دوشنبه 20 نوامبر می توانند از ادارات مربوط به امور خارجیان محل زندگی خود در خواست اجازه اقامت رسمی با اجازه کار کنند.

                  مهمترین شرطی که در توافق وزیران کشور برای اینگونه پناهجویان در نظر گرفته شده این است که تقاضا کننده محل کار داشته باشد ویا گواهی اشتغال به یک کار دراز مدت را تا ماه سپتامبر سال اینده ارائه دهد.

                  سخنگوی وزارت کشور در برلین گفت ، این افراد می توانند بطور کاملا معمول به بازار کار مراجعه کنند و این شرط که در مرحله اول شهروندان آلمان و یا اتحادیه اروپا و سپس خارجیان دیگرحق استفاده از فرصت های شغلی را دارند دیگر اعتبار ندارد.

                  وضع ایرانیان

                  طبق اطلاعاتی که از اداره آمار فدرال و اداره امور مهاجرت و پناهندگی بدست آمده در سال 2000 شمار ایرانیان ساکن آلمان 107 هزارو 927 نفر بوده در حالیکه در سال گذشته میلادی فقط 61 هزارو 792 ایرانی در آمار رسمی ملاحظه می شود. علت این کاهش چشم گیر آماری این است که با اعلام سیاست مهاجر پذیری آلمان و تسهیلات دادن تابعیت ، در سال گذشته رقم آلمانی های ایرانی تبار به 69 هزارو 861 نفر رسیده است .

                  طبق همین آمار در حال حاضر 5 هزارو 186 ایرانی با استفاده از "دولدونگ " یا بلاتکلیف در المان بسر می برند .

                  از رقم ایرانیها ئی که تابعیت آلمان را دارند 21 هزارنفر بکار اشتغال دارند که از میان آنها 10 هزار نفر کارمند و 7 هزار نفرشان کارگر هستند . 15 هزار نفر هم جویای کارند.

                  از اول ماه ژانویه تا 30 سپتامبر سال جاری 2006 تعداد 952 نفر ایرانی از آلمان تقاضای پناهندگی کردند که تا کنون فقط 21 نفر از آنها بعنوان پناهنده برسمیت شناخته شدند و تقاضای 346 نفر رد شده است 5 نفر هم درخواست پناهندگی خود را پس گرفتند.




                  Comment


                  • #69
                    Masoud Hosseini became a free man. Hosseini had spent four years behind bars as an immigration detainee -- most recently, in Florida's Colquitt County Jail -- based on terrorism allegations but without facing any criminal charges.

                    Over the telephone on Oct. 16, Hosseini described "giv[ing] all his stuff away" to fellow jail mates before being bussed to the Greyhound station in Tallahasee carrying sacks full of documents related to his case conspicuously stamped by the detention facility. His first purchase outside of jail was a large bag to carry them in.
                    "Anything for me was fun," he said of his first few hours on the outside. "Just going down the street, looking at the people, the new cars.

                    "I couldn't believe it," he said. That night, at a hotel, "I couldn't sleep. I kept thinking, if I want to, I can really walk out of this room?"

                    Disappeared in America reported on Hosseini's case in an article published three days prior to his release: The Department of Homeland Security had accused Hosseini of having ties to the Iranian dissident group Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), which the US designated as a terrorist organization in 1997. But it held him in immigration detention and refused to allow him a bail hearing as his visa case made its way through numerous immigration appeals.

                    On Sept. 28, the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals found that Hosseini "is more likely than not to be tortured" if he were deported to his native Iran. It granted Hosseini protection under the Convention Against Torture, and barred the government from deporting Hosseini until such a time that he would no longer be at risk.

                    It's unclear why the government opted to release Hosseini at this time after insisting on keeping him behind bars for so long, arguing he presented a danger. The Ninth Circuit remanded Hosseini's case to a lower immigration appeals board, instructing it to re-examine whether the government's evidence supports the conclusion that Hosseini poses a threat to national security.

                    Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not return our calls by press time. Hosseini's attorney, Matt Adams of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, told us the government failed to tell him they were letting his client go.

                    Now Hosseini reports he's under supervised release, which requires him to report to the immigration authorities on a regular basis until authorities determine his legal status in the country.

                    He's got a lot of time to make up for.

                    "I'm four years behind," said Hosseini from North Carolina, where his brother and sister live. "But I'm so happy to be free."



                    Comment


                    • #70
                      Bitter over 21 years of borrowed time

                      It's not the accusation that he once belonged to an Iranian terrorist organization that most torments Hassan Samimifar. It's the wait.

                      Since coming to Canada as a refugee 21 years ago, Samimifar has waited for a verdict on his immigration status.

                      Soon, he could be deported back to Iran for alleged links to the Mujahedin-e-Khalq, considered a terrorist organization by the Canadian government. Part of him will simply be glad for an end to the waiting.

                      "When a person is convicted of a murder and he will be executed, the anticipation of death is sometimes harder than death itself," Samimifar, 47, said this week in an interview.

                      "The best time of my life to establish a good life - it's gone. What makes me angry is that I can't get those years back."

                      Samimifar is suing the federal government for $5 million in damages, lost income and expenses, alleging negligence by immigration authorities. Last month, a Federal Court judge denied the government's request for a summary judgment.

                      - - -

                      Samimifar was born in Tehran and served in the Iranian navy. After the Islamic revolution of 1979, he moved to India to study science.

                      While in university, he attended lectures and demonstrations opposing the regime of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. During this time, the Canadian government alleges, he joined MEK, a Marxist group seeking to overthrow the Iranian government.

                      Ottawa says MEK espouses the use of force to purge Western influence from Iranian society, and has forged links with Saddam Hussein and the Taliban.

                      Samimifar admits to "sympathizing" with a student group linked to the MEK, but denies ever being an MEK member.

                      In 1985, Samimifar arrived in Canada and claimed refugee status. The following year, he was convicted of causing a disturbance after an altercation with an immigration officer at a Toronto airport, as well as of breaching his bail conditions.

                      The convictions hindered his efforts to apply for permanent residence. Even so, he alleges Canadian immigration officials neglected his file for years.

                      In 1991, he was informed his application for permanent residence was rejected, and his case would proceed to an immigration hearing. His case was supposed to be transferred to a hearing office in Mississauga, Ont., but in 1994 officials admitted the file was never transferred.

                      In 1994, he was approved in principle for permanent residence. But he would wait another nine years for a final decision. During that time, he contacted immigration officials many times and convinced MPs to inquire about his case. Still, no answer.

                      By 2003, even immigration officials were arguing over the meaning of "normal" processing time. "Normal does not mean putting the file on the shelf without any action for long periods of time due to work volumes/backlogs," one official said in an email.

                      Finally, in 2003, Samimifar was told his application was refused because he was a member of a terrorist organization.

                      Samimifar insists he has had no contact with MEK since he came to Canada. An immigration hearing is scheduled for early next month, and he could be deported sometime next year.

                      Samimifar said he doesn't believe he'd be in grave danger if returned to Iran, but still worries he could be targeted for being "labelled" an MEK member.

                      "I wish I never came to Canada, because I've been through hell here," he said. "If I didn't have a family, I would have given up."

                      Spokespeople for the Justice Department and Citizenship and Immigration Canada declined to comment, noting the case is still before the courts.



                      Comment


                      • #71
                        Iranian refugee sues federal government over 20-year wait as deportation looms

                        It’s not the accusation that he once belonged to an Iranian terrorist organization that most torments Hassan Samimifar. It’s the wait.
                        Since coming to Canada as a refugee 21 years ago, Samimifar has waited for a verdict on his immigration status.
                        Soon, he could be deported back to Iran for alleged links to the Mujahedin-e-Khalq, considered a terrorist organization by the Canadian government. Part of him will simply be glad for an end to the waiting.
                        “When a person is convicted of a murder and he will be executed, the anticipation of death is sometimes harder than death itself,” Samimifar, 47, said this week in an interview.
                        “The best time of my life to establish a good life — it’s gone. What makes me angry is that I can’t get those years back.”
                        Samimifar was born in Tehran and served in the Iranian navy. After the Islamic revolution of 1979, he moved to India to study science.
                        While in university, he attended lectures and demonstrations opposing the regime of Ayatollah Khomeini. During this time, the Canadian government alleges, he joined MEK, a Marxist group seeking to overthrow the Iranian government.
                        Ottawa says MEK espouses the use of force to purge Western influence from Iranian society, and has forged links with Saddam Hussein and the Taliban.
                        Samimifar admits to “sympathizing” with a student group with links to the MEK, but denies ever being a MEK member.
                        In 1985, Samimifar arrived in Canada and claimed refugee status.
                        The following year, he was convicted for causing a disturbance after an altercation with an immigration officer at a Toronto airport, as well as for breaching his bail conditions.
                        The convictions hindered his efforts to apply for permanent residence. Even so, Samimifar alleges Canadian immigration officials neglected his file for years.
                        In 1991, he was informed his application for permanent residence was rejected, and his case would proceed to an immigration hearing.
                        His case was supposed to be transferred to a hearings office in Mississauga, Ont., but in 1994 immigration officials admitted the file was never transferred.
                        In 1994, he was approved in principle for permanent residence. But he would wait another nine years for a final decision.
                        During that time, he contacted immigration officials dozens of times, and convinced local MPs to inquire about his case. Still, no answer.
                        At one point, the immigration officer assigned to the case didn’t have security clearance to handle his file. She also took “income-averaging leave” and complained about not having enough time to deal with the file due to other assignments.
                        By 2003, even immigration officials were arguing over the meaning of “normal” processing time.
                        “Normal does not mean putting the file on the shelf without any action for long periods of time due to work volumes/backlogs,” one official said in an e-mail.
                        Finally, in 2003, Samimifar was told his application for permanent residence was refused because he was a member of a terrorist organization.
                        Samimifar insists he has had no contact with MEK since he came to Canada. He was interviewed by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service in 1994, but says he has not heard from them since.
                        An immigration hearing is scheduled for early next month, and he could be deported sometime next year. Samimifar said he doesn’t believe he’d be in grave danger if returned to Iran, but still worries he could be targeted for being “labelled” a MEK member.
                        He says the ordeal has “destroyed” his chance to have a happy, productive life.
                        His common-law wife, a Japanese citizen, has been denied permanent residence in Canada because he is not qualified to sponsor her. She’s lived in Canada on temporary visas for nearly two decades, unable to work legally, and must travel back to Japan several times a year to renew her status.
                        To support his two young daughters, both born in Canada, Samimifar waits tables at two restaurants in the Toronto area, sometimes working as many as 70 hours a week. A psychological assessment found he suffers from chronic depression and anxiety.
                        “I wish I never came to Canada, because I’ve been through hell here,” he said. “If I didn’t have a family, I would have given up.”
                        Samimifar is suing the federal government for $5 million in damages, lost income and expenses, alleging negligence by immigration authorities. Last month, a Federal Court judge denied the government’s request for a summary judgment.
                        “If there was a reason to deport Mr. Samimifar before he came to Canada, then he should have been deported way before now,” said Samimifar’s lawyer, Lorne Waldman. “It’s simply unconscionable that they could neglect a file for 20 years.”
                        Spokespersons for the Justice Department and Citizenship and Immigration Canada declined to comment, noting the case is still before the courts.



                        Comment


                        • #72
                          مهاجران از كشور را ديگر نبايد «ايرانيان فراري» بناميم


                          مدير اداره كل امور اجتماعي و ايرانيان خارج از كشور گفت: بايد از ادبياتي كه چند سال پيش استفاده مي*كرديم و مهاجران را ايرانيان فراري مي*ناميديم، بگذريم؛ چون اين افراد بخشي از خانواده بزرگ ايران هستند و مي*بايست فاصله*اي را كه بين ما و آنها به وجود آمده كم كرد.



                          داراييان مدير اداره كل امور اجتماعي و ايرانيان خارج از كشور در نشست خبري دومين همايش گفتمان ايرانيان خارج از كشور كه در سازمان فرهنگ و ارتباطات اسلامي برگزار شد، گفت: به دنبال برگزاري اولين همايش گفتمان ايرانيان خارج از كشور كه با محوريت بررسي و شناخت مسايل و مشكلات ايرانيان مقيم خارج از كشور در سال 1379 برگزار شد، قصد داريم كه دومين همايش با اين موضوع را در روزهاي 15 تا 18 آذر ماه در كتابخانه ملي برگزار كنيم.

                          وي با اشاره به محورهايي كه علاقمندان در آن موضوعات مقالاتي را به دبيرخانه ارسال داشته*اند،* بيان داشت: اولين موضوع طرح شده كه مقالاتي هم در اين خصوص براي ما ارايه شد، «چالش*هاي فراروي هويت ايرانيان در خارج از كشور» است كه كارشناسان ايراني خارج از كشور در اين خصوص و با زير مجموعه*هاي «آسيب*شناسي زبان فارسي»، «تحول*پذيري هويت ايراني در تعامل با فرهنگ*هاي ديگر»، «گسست فرهنگي و بحران هويت»، «باورها و ارزش*هاي ديني، فرهنگي و هويت» و «خرده فرهنگ مهاجران و هويت ايراني» مقالات متعددي را به دبيرخانه ارسال داشته*اند.


                          مدير اداره كل امور اجتماعي و ايرانيان خارج از كشور افزود: در سه محور پيشنهادي 150 مقاله براي ما ارسال شد كه 36 مقاله از ايرانيان خارج از كشور و 22 مقاله از صاحب*نظران داخلي براي قرايت در روزهاي برگزاري انتخاب شده*اند.
                          همچنين 64 مقاله براي انتشار در كتابي با همين موضوع انتشار خواهد يافت. در اين خصوص گفتن اين نكته ضروري است كه مقالاتي را كه بيش از 75 امتياز آورده*اند براي انتشار در كتاب برگزيده*ايم.

                          وي در ادامه به دومين محور پيشنهادي از سوي دبيرخانه براي ارسال مقاله اشاره كرد و گفت: «جهاني شدن و هويت ملي نزد جامعه ايراني خارج از كشور» دومين موضوع فرا روي كارشناسان بود كه در بخش*هاي «هويت ملي در فرآيند جهاني شدن»،* «نقش دولت*ها در پاسداري از هويت ملي در چالش با جهاني شدن»، «مسئوليت و رسالت نخبگان و رهبران فكري جامعه در تبديل فرصت*ها و تبديل*ها» و «جايگاه دين در تقويت اقتدار ملي با تكيه بر هويت ملي» مورد توجه كارشناسان ايراني در داخل و خارج از كشور قرار گرفت.

                          داراييان سومين موضوعي را كه كارشناسان در آن خصوص مقالاتي را به دبيرخانه ارسال داشته*اند، «راه*هاي تقويت هويت ايرانيان» عنوان كرد و گفت: «بازيابي هويت ملي در پرتو آموزه*هاي ديني»، «احياي هويت ملي در احياي زبان فارسي»، «تاثير آثار ادبي و مواريث فرهنگي در بازشناسي هويت ايراني» و «ضرورت تبيين الگوي ايراني در حوزه تعليم» از زيرشاخه*ها سومين محور طرح شده از سوي ما هستند كه دوستان كارشناس درباره آن آثاري را به دبيرخانه ارسال داشته*اند.

                          وي در ادامه با اشاره به اين كه در مراسم افتتاحيه وزير فرهنگ و ارشاد اسلامي و رئيس سازمان فرهنگ و ارتباطات اسلامي حضور خواهند داشت، گفت: در روزهاي برپايي مراسم هم رئيس فراكسيون ايرانيان خارج از كشور، رحيم مشايي - قائم مقام رئيس شوراي عالي انقلاب فرهنگي، علي*اكبر اشعري و... در اين مراسم سخنراني مي*كنند.
                          وي با بيان اين مطلب كه نسبت به دوره قبل رشد 50 درصدي مقالات را داشته*ايم،* يادآور شد: از 23 كشور ايراني نشين، 36 مقاله را دريافت كرده*ايم.


                          داراييان با اشاره به ضرورت جذب ايرانيان خارج از كشور گفت: بايد بگذريم از ادبياتي كه چند سال پيش استفاده مي*كرديم و مهاجران را ايرانيان فراري مي*ناميديم، چون اين افراد بخشي از خانواده بزرگ ايران هستند و مي*بايست هر چه سريع*تر فاصله*اي را كه بين ما و آنها به وجود آمده كم كرد.


                          وي ادامه داد: گفتن اين نكته خالي از لطف نيست كه بسياري از مدارس ما با هزينه خيرين ايراني خارج از كشور اداره و يا ساخته مي*شوند و در زلزله بم هم شاهد بوديم كه چه حجم كمكي را به هموطنان خود ارسال داشتند.
                          نه غزه نه لبنان جانم فدای ایران


                          «در زندگی زخم*هايی هست که مثل خوره روح را آهسته در انزوا می*خورد و می*تراشد.»
                          صادق هدايت؛ بوف کور

                          Comment


                          • #73
                            If we want our grandchildren to be able to give thanks for being Americans, we'll need to... start steering a course away from government control of our lives -- and start moving back toward greater personal responsibility." -- Ed Feulner

                            "Honesty in action is the best policy, but (as the Bible shows) sin is always crouching at our door. When it leaps, honest words -- with changes in behavior -- are the best response." -- Marvin Olasky

                            "The fact is that traditional morality has practical authority independent of whether God exists and whether we know His will." -- Jonah Goldberg

                            "It's time to abandon the mindlessly repeated mantra that religious belief has been the greatest source of human conflict and violence. Atheism, not religion, is the real force behind the mass murders of history." -- Dinesh D'Souza

                            "We are so robotic in America whenever the word ‘discrimination' is used that we shut down thought and all genuflect in the direction of whoever is complaining. But the proper question is not whether it is discrimination but whether it is justified." -- Mona Charen

                            "Whatever history's verdict on the Iraq war and on Secretary Rumsfeld, both deserved to be discussed and debated on a far more serious and responsible level than the media sound bites, political spin and venomous cheap shots which have become all too common. Whether Donald Rumsfeld's policies were mistaken or not, that is no reason to accept superficial and even gutter-level discourse on momentous national issues. There was a time when even politicians understood that." -- Thomas Sowell

                            "If I was out there every night beating people over the head... I would become a Rush Limbaugh. That's not my goal. I don't make the facts up to fit the political viewpoint that happens to parallel what it is I'm trying to express." -- MSNBC's extraordinarily biased Keith Olbermann

                            "John Edwards is mulling another presidential run two years hence. The Lesser Kedward styles himself an economic populist, which means that he's a zillionaire trial lawyer who is centering his campaign on attacking Wal-Mart, where millions of ordinary Americans shop. Stuff like this makes almost explicable the Democrats' decision to nominate that goofball with the Purple Heart bandages the last time around." -- James Taranto

                            "While ordinary working-class people across America were queuing for the new PlayStation 3, one fellow had a bright idea -- dropping his boss's name at Wal-Mart to get the next-gen console sent over on the QT for the boss's family. Unfortunately, the boss was former Sen. John Edwards, John Kerry's would-be veep and famous nemesis of Wal-Mart's evil dominion over the Earth... The staffer was lucky Wal-Mart didn't send an empty box weighted with rocks. Merry Christmas!" -- James Lileks

                            "Democrats are not exactly cleaning out the cesspool of corruption. It seems more like what has been uncharitably described as a French Shower: Spritzing some perfume near the offending area not to remove the smell, but to overwhelm it with yet another." -- Rich Galen

                            "One of the stunt-imams in US Airways' advertising scheme, Omar Shahin, complained about being removed from the plane, saying: ‘Six scholars in handcuffs. It's terrible.' Yes, especially when there was a whole conference of them! Six out of 150 is called ‘poor law enforcement'." -- Ann Coulter

                            "The Democratic Party... narrowed the field to New York and Denver for cities to host the 2008 party convention. It's a fierce fight. New York has all the electoral votes but marijuana is legal in Denver, so it could go either way." -- Argus Hamilton

                            "According to a new study by National Geographic, 11 percent of Americans between the ages of eighteen and twenty-four could not find the United States on a map of the world. You know the only place where everyone could find the United States on a map? Mexico." -- Jay Leno

                            "Members of Congress may flatter themselves by saying, in effect, ‘It's not us -- it's the guy in the White House.' But if those now in Congress think this election was only about Bush, and not also about them, they're dead wrong. Let's start with the fact that Congress and the media are among the least popular institutions in American life. Exit polls may show President Bush's favorability rating at just 42%, but that of Congress is even lower, at 35%. It isn't hard, moreover, to explain why the GOP-led Congress is so reviled. Since 2003, it set three admittedly ambitious reform goals for itself -- immigration, Social Security and taxes. It accomplished exactly none of them, in summer making only a stab at immigration. Republicans made gains in 2002 and 2004 even as they veered from the fiscally responsible and reform-minded path they'd been on. They became arrogant, and now the trends look ominous... [Republicans] might want to dust off that long-forgotten Contract with America, and get back to basics." -- Investor's Business Daily

                            "There hasn't been any ideology in the Republican Party, any conservatism, for at least two to maybe four years. You could argue [President] Bush was more of an ideologue in the presidential campaign of ‘04, but in looking at what happened [on 7 November], it wasn't conservatism that lost. Conservatism won when it ran as a Democrat. It won in a number of places. Republicanism lost. RINO Republicans, country-club blue-blood Republicans, this nonpartisan Republican identity, that's what went down in flames. I've always believed that those of us who are conservative believe in the ideology. We believe it wins. We believe it's best for the country. We believe it's best for the people. We believe it's ultimately compassionate, and it has not been present... Now, where are these future conservative leaders?" -- Rush Limbaugh



                            Comment


                            • #74
                              It is total crap that we have to deal with an issue like [lobbying and ethics] when we've got a war going on and we got [sic] all these other issues." -- John Murtha

                              "The biggest winners in last week's election were the enemies of the United States, who see the results as confirmation of one of their doctrines: the United States is weak and does not have the commitment to fight a protracted war." -- Cal Thomas

                              "With the Democratic victory in the midterm elections, one big winner was the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). The American Islamic pressure group now has a chance to advance its agenda in numerous ways, with energetic water-carrying by, among others, the Speaker of the House, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and the first Muslim member of Congress." -- Robert Spencer

                              "Democrats support surrender in Iraq, higher taxes and the impeachment of President Bush. They just won an election by pretending to be against all three." -- Ann Coulter

                              "The first thing to be noted about Tuesday's election returns is that they were not, in any serious sense, a Democratic victory. They were, however, a thoroughgoing Republican defeat. The Democrats had practically nothing to do with it. They had no policy proposals to speak of -- least of all on Iraq, which they insisted was the central issue. But in a two-party system, if the voters decide to throw the rascals out, their only option is to throw the other rascals in. All the Democrats had to do was be there." -- William Rusher

                              "In private conversation, Republican members of Congress blame Majority Leader John Boehner and Majority Whip Roy Blunt in no small part for their midterm election debacle. Yet, either Boehner, Blunt or both are expected to be returned to their leadership posts Friday. For good reason, the GOP often is called ‘the stupid party'." -- Robert Novak

                              "This is not a time for true conservatives to hang their heads or to run for cover. This is a time for a moral, political, and spiritual renewal to grip the very heart of the nation." -- Harry R. Jackson, Jr.

                              "[Donald] Rumsfeld had better not travel abroad for a very long while; or he could be arrested. Same goes for [Attorney General Alberto] Gonzales and the other war criminals in this administration." -- Time magazine's Andrew Sullivan

                              "We have seen new polls this morning about you and Senator Hillary Clinton. Here's my question. Do you think that residual resistance is greater for race or for gender? Is the nation secretly, I guess, more racist or more sexist?" -- Diane Sawyer to Barack Obama

                              "Your strong voice for national security, the war on terror and Iraq provides genuine leadership for our party, and I count on you to continue to lead on these vital issues." -- Nancy Pelosi endorsing John Murtha for Majority Leader

                              "We need to begin a phased redeployment of forces from Iraq in four to six months... We have to tell Iraqis that the open-ended commitment is over." -- Carl Levin

                              "Since September 11, many Muslim Americans have been subjected to searches at airports and other locations based upon their religion and national origin. We must make [that] illegal." -- Nancy Pelosi

                              "Our strong inclination would be to avoid tax hikes. That's pretty universal. That shows the pragmatism of the Democratic Party. Even the most liberal people said ‘No, we shouldn't go for tax hikes.' So we are going to try to avoid it." -- Chuck Schumer

                              "This [election] is not a purely domestic issue for America, but it is the defeat of Bush's hawkish policies in the world. Since Washington's hostile and hawkish policies have always been against the Iranian nation, this defeat is actually an obvious victory for the Iranian nation." -- Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

                              "Today... [a] false truth is being spread: that most of our military personnel and our troops in Iraq are bright, motivated young people, who, with eyes wide open are defending our country from terrorists and spreading democracy." -- Charles Pinning of The Providence (RI) Journal

                              "You can rationalize what happened on Tuesday in the context of previous sixth-year elections -- 1986, 1958, 1938, yada yada -- but that's not how it was seen around the world, either in the chancelleries of Europe, where they're dancing conga lines, or in the caves of the Hindu Kush, where they would also be dancing conga lines if Mullah Omar hadn't made it a beheading offense." -- Mark Steyn

                              "We have divided government. Good, and for many reasons. One: It confuses our enemies. ‘Who do we hate now?' they ask in their caves, ‘the evil woman from San Francisco or the old infidel from Texas?"' -- Peggy Noonan

                              "George McGovern said Thursday U.S. troops should be brought home by June. John Dean in his new book accused the president of abuses in the White House. If this is a Twilight Zone episode, we're about a month before the break-in at the Watergate." -- Argus Hamilton

                              "Tuesday's elections would have turned out vastly different if Americans had known that the Democrats ‘plan' for Iraq would be to pick the brain of socialist and former presidential candidate George McGovern... Is this the best the Democrats have to offer in the way of ideas and leadership on Iraq?... It is perfectly understandable that Democrats would be wary of input from the likes of Al Gore, John Kerry, or John Murtha. Depending on that collection of vipers for help would be like seeking expert advice from Bill Clinton on ending marital infidelity..." -- John Lillpop

                              "Democrat Russ Feingold announced that he has decided not to run for President in 2008. Which finally answers the question no one asked." -- Conan O'Brien



                              Comment


                              • #75
                                جان هاوارد، نخست وزير استراليا، اعلام کرده است که متقاضيان شهروندی اين کشور بايد در آزمون های ويژه شهروندی شرکت کنند.
                                بنابر مقررات جديد، متقاضيان بايد ثابت کنند که دارای دانش زبان انگليسی برای استفاده در محيط های کاری هستند و همچنين نشان دهند که به ارزش های جامعه استراليايی، از جمله اصول دموکراتيک و آزادی اديان احترام می گذارند و پايبند هستند.

                                آنها همچنين بايد بپذيرند که ازقوانين استراليا پيروی می کنند.

                                آقای هاوارد گفت آزمون جديد شهروندی موجب تبعيض نمی شود بلکه بر اين خواسته دولت تاکيد می کند که تازه واردين بايد به طور کامل در جامعه استراليا ادغام شوند.

                                هر ساله دهها هزار نفر برای شهروندی استراليا تقاضا می دهند و اين کشور در 55 سال گذشته حدود سه ميليون و پانصد هزار مهاجر را به شهروندی پذيرفته است.

                                بريتانيا از نوامبر سال گذشته ميلادی آزمون مشابهی را برای متقاضيان شهروندی در اين کشور به اجرا گذاشت.

                                در بريتانيا

                                در بريتانيا تقاضا كنندگان، پيش از شركت در مراسم رسمى شهروند شدن، بايد در يكى از ٩٠ مركزى كه در اطراف كشور براى اين منظور پيش بينى شده در آزمون شهروندی شركت كنند.

                                در سال ٢٠٠٤ تعداد كسانى كه شهروند بريتانيا شدند به ١٤١٠٠٠ نفر رسيد كه ١٢ درصد بيشتر از سال ٢٠٠٣ بود.

                                آزمون "زندگى در بريتانيا" آخرين مرحله از تغييراتى است كه توسط ديويد بلانكت، وزير كشور سابق بريتانيا، در مورد روند شهروندى در اين كشور صورت گرفته است.

                                به گفته وزارت كشور بريتانيا، هدف از اين آزمون ايجاد روشى جديد و معنادار بوده تا به كسانى كه شهروند مى شوند كمك كند در ارزش ها و سنت هاى بريتانيايی سهيم شوند.




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