The Hague/Vienna, 22 November 2014 – Two days to the deadline of the Iran nuclear talks in Vienna, the campaign group Naame Shaam today called on the Western powers taking part in the negotiations with Iran to adopt a tougher and more realistic stance.
“Western negotiators should tell their Iranian counterparts that economic sanctions against Iran will not be lifted until the Iranian regime completely gives up its military nuclear programme, ends its military and financial support to the Syrian regime and pulls all its militias out of Syria,” Naame Shaam’s Campaign Director Fouad Hamdan said.
“The Iranian regime must also order Hezbollah Lebanon to disband its military wing and end its support to the Huthi militias in Yemen. Only then a gradual lifting of economic sanctions against Iran should be considered,” Hamdan added.
“The US and its allies cannot just go on ignoring the interconnected reasons for the Iranian regime’s quest for nuclear weapons and its disastrous military adventures in the region,” he said. “They cannot just turn a blind eye to what Sepah Pasdaran (Iranian Revolutionary Guards) is doing in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen because they want to reach a deal regarding Iran’s nuclear programme at any cost.”
The Iranian regime has been destabilising Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen in an attempt to impose itself as a regional power that nobody can then stop from becoming a nuclear power.
For further questions:
Please contact Naame Shaam’s Campaign Director Fouad Hamdan at [email protected]
Notes for editors:
1. Naame Shaam is a group of Iranian, Syrian and Lebanese activists and citizen-journalists that focuses on uncovering the role of the Iranian regime in Syria, www.naameshaam.org. Naame Shaam is supported by the Netherlands-based Rule of Law Foundation, www.lawrules.org.
2. Earlier this month, Naame Shaam published an in-depth report on the role of the Iranian regime in the ongoing war in Syria. The key findings of the report, “Iran in Syria: From an Ally of the Regime to an Occupying Force”, include:
- The Syrian regime would have collapsed a long time ago if it was not for Iranian military and economic support. Iran has kept the Bashar al-Assad’s regime afloat by spending billions of dollars on weapons and fighters, as well as providing it with loans and credit lines worth billions of dollars.
- The Iranian Revolutionary Guards are in control of all major military operations in regime-held areas in Syria. They control the Syrian military and other Syrian paramilitary forces such as the National Defense Forces known as the “Shabbiha.” In May 2014, Sepah Pasdaran commander Brig. Gen. Hossein Hamedani said: “Bashar al-Assad is fighting this war [in Syria] as our deputy”. Regime-held areas in Syria are effectively occupied by Iran. The chief of Iran’s Sepah Qods force, General Qassem Soleimani, is the de facto ruler of Iranian-occupied Syria. Sepah Qods is the foreign arm of Sepah Pasdaran.
- The Iranian regime is complicit in war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Syria. There is sufficient evidence to open investigations and bring law suits against the Iranian political and military leadership for its role in many of these crimes, including the Ghouta chemical attack in August 2013 and the use of barrel bombs against civilians.
- The primary objective behind Iran’s war in Syria is to keep arms shipments flowing to Hezbollah in Lebanon via Syria, so that this militia remains a strong deterrent against any possible attack against Iran’s military nuclear programme. The arms shipments are today totally dependent on vulnerable land routes passing through Syria.
3. Links related to the report “Iran in Syria: From an Ally of the Regime to an Occupying Force”:
- The full report is available in English at: http://www.naameshaam.org/report-iran-in-syria
- The report’s Executive Summary is available in Arabic at: http://www.naameshaam.org/ar/%D9%85%D9%84%D8%AE%D8%B5/
- The report’s Executive Summary is available in Persian at:
- Press release about the launch of the report in English: http://www.naameshaam.org/naame-shaam-releases-report-on-role-of-iranian-regime-in-syria-war/
- Press release about the launch of the report in Arabic: http://goo.gl/DHqK2Y
- Press release about the launch of the report in Persian: http://goo.gl/31ZlX1
- New Narrative and Policy Recommendations in English: http://www.naameshaam.org/new-narrative-on-the-syrian-revolution-and-the-war-in-syria-and-policy-recommendations-to-the-united-states-and-its-allies/
- New Narrative and Policy Recommendations in Arabic: http://goo.gl/UNkv76