The Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee has today tabled its report into the human rights implications of recent violence in Iran, making 12 recommendations for action by the Australian Government.
The committee has recommended that the Australian Government take steps to list the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organisation; expand the list of individuals and entities targeted by Magnitsky sanctions, and minimise diplomatic relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI).
Committee Chair and Shadow Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Claire Chandler, said that Australia has a moral obligation to take a strong stand against the IRI’s abhorrent behaviour, but also an obligation to protect Australians against the dangerous and threatening behaviour of the IRI regime.
“The evidence presented to the committee indicates that the IRI regime is carrying out gross human rights violations in Iran, particularly against women, girls, ethnic and religious minorities, and peaceful protesters. Australia should be much more active in helping the international community to hold them accountable,” Senator Chandler said.
“The IRI regime is effectively a rogue state, responsible for acts of terrorism, cybercrime, acts of violence against its critics, hostage diplomacy and other abhorrent behaviour. Australia cannot and should not have any pretence of maintaining a business-as-usual diplomatic relationship with such a regime.
“Australia has been slow to act and continues to lag behind other like-minded nations in applying sanctions and taking action. The frustration of the diaspora community about this has come through very clearly in the evidence received by the committee.”
The committee also heard from a large number of Iranian-Australians who have reported being the target of intimidating and threatening behaviour as a result of their involvement in the recent protests here in Australia.
“It is a very significant concern that such a large number of people living in Australians feel threatened by a foreign government and its affiliates. Unfortunately, the committee heard that the community does not have confidence in the current processes the government has in place for reporting and investigating these concerns,” Senator Chandler said.
“We have made a number of recommendations relating to foreign interference, including that any Iranian officials and diplomats considered to be involved in such behaviour must be expelled from Australia.”
The full report and recommendations can be found at https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Foreign_Affairs_Defence_and_Trade/HumanRightsinIran/Report
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