20 July 2011, Washington, D.C. — The International Coalition for the Rights of Iranian Refugees calls for a protest action against the Cypriot authorities’ criminal assault on defenseless Iranian asylum-seekers detained in relation to their migration status. Protest actions and pickets are already organized this weekend for Stockholm, Sweden and Washington DC, United States, with additional cities forthcoming.
On Tuesday, 12 July, 2011, approximately 35 police officers and other Cypriot authorities violently assaulted a group of Iranian refugees held in Larnaca detention center. During the attack, the Cypriot authorities threatened the refugees with handguns and used batons and brass knuckles to brutally beat the Iranian refugees, including an elderly 72-year old asylum-seeker, who was transferred to solitary confinement after the beatings. He, along with his family, was deported to Iran in the following days. One refugee is reported to have sustained a broken leg, for which he has received no medical treatment.
We do not accept the continued crimes against asylum-seekers by the Cypriot government. We call all refugee, civil, and human rights activists to demonstrate at the Embassies of the Government of Cyprus worldwide, or at travel agencies specializing in Cyprus tourism.
– We demand that all asylum-seekers attacked in Larnaca detention by the Cypriot authorities be provided urgent international assistance in being removed from this facility and transferred, with the assistance of UNHCR, to a safe third country.
– We demand immediate investigation of prison and detention conditions in Cyprus by the International Red Cross. We express particularly urgent concern regarding the medical condition of Mostafa Taghilou, whose leg is reported broken.
– We demand that the Cypriot government be held accountable immediately at level of the European Union.
Members of the ICRIR include Action for Democracy and Human Rights in the Middle East, International Federation for Iranian Refugees, Iranian Refugees Action Network, Iranian Refugee Amnesty Network, and Mission Free Iran.
International Coalition for the Rights of Iranian Refugees
phone: (240) 812-9234