Relatives of Iranian leak say safe haven for Canadian government officials – CTV News IG News

Outaouais –

When the Iranian military shot down flight PS752 in January 2020, relatives of those killed said Canada had become a safe haven for regime officials.

“Canada has become a haven for criminals from the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Hameed Esmailian told the House Justice Committee Thursday afternoon.

Esmaeilion leads a group representing bereaved families, many of whom are known to have worked for the regime, or are related to senior officials, moving freely in Canada.

“It’s a big concern for the Iranian people,” he said.

Amid the brutal crackdown on women and human rights protesters across Iran, federal liberals are facing growing pressure to treat part of Iran’s military as a terrorist group.

It also coincides with the 1000th anniversary of the downing of flight PS752 near Tehran, which killed 176 people, most en route from Ukraine to Canada.

No one has been held responsible.

Esmaeilion brought it back to a naïve bureaucracy that sees Iran as a normal country.

“They are mainly lawyers or consultants; They still believe in dialogue with Iran because they don’t see Iran or the Iranian regime as a mafia group.

“If you change your mindset, that you don’t negotiate with Switzerland or a democratic country, that will solve the problem.”

He said he told officials the Canadians would never play a hockey game with North Korea, yet Canada’s men’s national soccer team was scheduled to play with Iran in June, before soccer Canada is not subject to political turmoil. was canceled between

Esmaeilion said he blamed some people associated with Tehran for cutting his tires and making phone calls informing him that he had received threats.

The RCMP have previously said they are “aware of reports of victims who are subject to threats, harassment and intimidation.”

And while the Liberals said they updated their sanctions list on Monday based on influence from Esmailian’s group, they said there were many more responsible than insiders had suggested months earlier. .

“I am shocked not to see (Supreme Leader) Ali Khamenei on the list,” he said, adding that President Ibrahim Raisi and former Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif are expected to be listed.

He also called Iran’s representative to the Montreal-based International Civil Aviation Organization and said Farhad Parvaresh should be expelled from Canada.

This week, a crowd of Iranian Canadians marched on Parliament Hill to call on Ottawa to treat the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist group.

Experts said such a change would be difficult to implement, given that Iran has involved millions in non-combat roles in the force. A list of terrorists forced Ottawa to freeze assets held inside Canada and deny entry into the country.

Esmaeilion said this is a serious concern and that Canada could already have more than 15,000 people living in this situation. But he said his military documents made it clear if he had a higher rank and if he joined the IRGC by choice.

“We can give discounts to these people. We spoke to many lawyers and this is an easy way to get on the IRGC list.

He reiterated the need to hold those responsible for the downing of the plane that killed his wife and daughter. Esmaeilion’s group wants Canada to take the case to ICAO and the International Criminal Court.

“At the moment, after 1,000 days, we don’t have a roadmap; We have no time limit,” he said.

In an interview on Wednesday, Transport Minister Omar Alghbra said Canada wants justice for the victims of Flight PS752, but must exhaust all avenues with Iran before an international tribunal can take up the case. the case.

“The process is painful, it’s long, it’s cumbersome, it’s complicated,” he said.

“These international bodies are flawed, they are flawed, but they are our best way to hold Iran accountable.”

Alghbra said Canada was helping with major reforms aimed at preventing another catastrophe, such as the Safe Skies initiative. The idea is for a global body to assess when a conflict makes civilian flying unsafe and advise companies and states not to fly.

The flight Iran shot down in response to the US killing of senior Iranian military official Qasem Soleimani took hours as part of a military operation.

“The PS752 shouldn’t have flown when there’s a conflict nearby,” Alghbra said.

–With files from Caitlin Yardley in Montreal.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on October 7, 2022.

ad blocking test (Why?)

source link