Canada must revoke Mehran Modiri & his team’s visa entry


Photo: Mehran Modiri and Mohammad Javad Azari-Jahromi, Islamic republic of Iran’s Minister of Information and Communications Technology who has been sanctioned by U.S over internet blackout.

An Open Letter to Minister Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada: Cc The Honourable Minister Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

The Honourable Minister Marco Mendicino:

We, the signatories of this letter, would like to express our concern regarding the recent decision of your Ministry to grant a visa to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Actor and Director, Mehran Modiri, to perform in Canada on January 19, 25 and February 2, 2020.

As Iranian dissidents living in exile, who have escaped the theocratic government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, we would like to provide you
the following facts regarding Mehran Modiri’s affiliation with propaganda and censorship organizations of the government in Iran:

1. Mehran Modiri works under the supervision of Iran’s Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance and the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting Television Channel, which are both responsible for promoting revolutionary and radical ideologies, hatred of the West and, anti-semitism. Both are both propaganda machines of the regime and responsible for censorship.

2. There are many Iranian artists in exile who have been forced to leave their country and families as a result of the regime’s censorship.

3. Iranian artists in exile have been deprived of visiting their country and families for 40 years but Modiri is able to freely travel and perform.

4. Would Canada allow Leni Riefenstahl, the Nazi Germany filmmaker, to come to Canada and screen her movie “Triumph of the Will”? We would like to know why all these standards apply to other dictatorial regimes and their agents but not to the Islamic Republic.

5. Not long ago, Canada’s parliament had Bill S-219 introduced for a vote. The recommendation was to reopen the Iranian Embassy in Canada. It had been closed after it was revealed that the regime in Iran was sending directives to Iranians living in Canada via their embassy to immerse themselves in government and culture, but not to assimilate to Canadian ideals in law and culture in order to gradually transform the nation of Canada into an Islamic republic of Iran. The strategy: involve and engage, saturated and influence, and gradually take over.

By allowing people of this agenda to freely come and go, Canada is aiding and enabling the outlaw regime in Iran’s strategy. In light of these disturbing realities and since this decision is contrary to Canadian values of freedom of expression and respect for artists and their works, we request the government of Canada to revoke Mr. Modiri and his team’s visa entry to Canada. Thank you for your consideration and prompt action.

Respectfully,

Sara Akrami, Author; Shabnam Assadollahi, Award-winning Human Rights Activist, former child prisoner of Evin

Joseph Akrami, Independent Filmmaker, Canada
Nazanin Afshin-Jam, Human Rights Activist, Canada
John C. Thompson, Terrorism and Security Expert, Author, Canada
Poupak Pournazari, Chemical Lab Tech, Canada
Minoo Karbakhsh, Human Rights Activist, Canada
Sima Tajdini, Artist, Human Rights Activist, Canada
Pari Zat, Artist, Retired Art teacher, Canada
Shahin Nejad, Political Activist, Canada
Mehrdad Rahbar, Artist, Canada
Nahid Shahin, Political Activist, Canada
Farah Gilmour, Nurse, Canada
Shahram Banihashem, Analyst, Canada
Stephanie Haines, political activist, Canada
Shayan Zahrai, Human Rights Advocate, Canada
Cyrus Asadollahi, Retired Engineer, Canada
Manutchehr Assemi, Retired Pediatrician, Canada
Vala Amir, Political Activist, USA
Kendra Malczyk, Human Rights Activist, USA
Dr Hooshang Lahooti – Principal Scientist and Lecturer, Sydney Medical School, Nepean Campus, the University of Sydney, Australia,
Behshad Hastibakhsh- Business Executive and Human Rights Activist
Sohrab Nabavi, Director of Foundation of Democracy for Iran, USA
Saman Sarraf, Social Media Activist, USA
Kaveh Khosromehr, Political Analyst, Europe
Zaman Feyli Journalist, Netherlands
Fred Saberi, Middle East Analyst, Swedish-Iranian Politician and Activist, Sweden
Penina Sarah, Human Rights and National Security Lawyer and Activist, Mideast Analyst, USA.
Irina Tsukerman, Human rights and national security lawyer and Analyst, USA
Sia Ayrom, Political Activist, USA
Parviz Khazaei, Human Rights Activist, Amnesty International Member, Switzerland and Liechtenstein
Ali Kimiai, Political Activist, USA
Arash Hamedian, Artist, Human Rights Advocate,Netherlands
Slater Bakhtavar, Attorney, Columnist and Author
John P Center, Artist, USA
Daniel Gharabaghi, Political and Human Rights Activist Mahboobeh Hosseinpour, Political activist, USA
Andrew B Robertson, USA
Vahid Abazari, Business Analysts, Poet UK
Marjaneh Rouhani, MD Political Activist, USA
Amir Tee Shafie, UK
Farah Shafiei, UK
Shahrzad Shafiei, UK
Monir Emamvardi, Teacher, Political Activist, Australia
Sohrab ParsaNejad, Political Activist, Iran
Ebad Bagheri, USA
SIa sadeji, Iran
Pardis shadpanah, Iran
Sima Mousavi, Iran
Mansoureh shadmehr, Iran
Sara Zamani, Iran
Mojdeh Tabari, Iran
Sadejeh Moussavi, Iran
Javanmard Asefi, Iran
Siamak behbehani, Iran
Shadmehr Safavi, Iran
Manijeh MadanI, Iran
Maani Sarmadian, Iran
Siyamack Sohrabmanesh, Italy
Kathy Carruthers, Canada
Maral Barati, Student, Canada
Sayan Tabatabaaei, Student, Canada
Fariba Khosravi, Student, Russia
Tamana Derakhshanian, Iranian Zoroastrian Activist, Denmark
Shaparak shadgan, Iran
Sarab Mohebbi, Iran
Saeed Safaviyan, Iran
Siamack Safaie, Iran
Banoo Najmi, Iran
Adam Clare, Canada
Simon Builderman , Canada
Sophie Builderman, Canada
Shirin Namavar, Iran
Soheila Namavar, Iran
Tania Heidari, USA
Joseph Heidari, USA

About the Author
Shabnam Assadollahi is an award-winning Canadian human rights advocate and freelance writer/journalist of Iranian origin. She has a Master’s degree in Social Anthropology and has worked extensively helping newcomers and refugees resettle in Canada and has distinguished herself as a broadcaster, writer and public speaker. Shabnam was arrested and imprisoned at age 16 for eighteen months in Iran's most notorious prison, Evin. Shabnam’s primary and heartfelt interest is to focus on the Iranian community and world events affecting women and minority communities.
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