Canada Recalls Ambassador to Iran
July 14, 2004
The Associated Press
The Globe and Mail
Ottawa A furious Foreign Affairs Minister Bill Graham recalled the ambassador to Iran on Wednesday after learning that Canadian observers will not be allowed at the Tehran trial of a man accused of killing a Canadian journalist.
An Iranian intelligence agent has been charged with semi-intentional murder in the death just over one year ago of Zahara Kazemi, a Montreal-based photographer of Iranian descent.
They had promised that we would have three observers, said Mr. Graham, who declared his extreme outrage at the development.
The trial is to start Saturday.
This is completely unacceptable behaviour on their part, Mr. Graham said. It's a complete rejection of the rule of law.
Under all human-rights codes, under all international-law standards, this should be a public trial with the right, certainly, of the family to be present to assure that justice is done.
Justice will not be done behind closed doors in Iran.
He learned of Iran's rejection of Canadian observers through media reports rather than directly from Tehran officials.
They are not co-operating with us, he said.
Mr. Graham is weighing a range of responses, from seeking a hearing at the International Court of Justice to slapping economic sanctions on Iran.
Ms. Kazemi died last year in Iranian custody after she was arrested outside a Tehran prison.
Iranian authorities at first said she died of a stroke after she was arrested photographing a protest outside a Tehran prison. They eventually charged an intelligence agent with her beating death.
The incident has strained diplomatic relations. Ottawa recalled its ambassador to Iran soon after the murder but returned the diplomat after co-operation was promised.
Think a light finally went on for Mr. Bill Graham ?
They had promised that we would have three observers."
(Lol...and you believed them?)
This is completely unacceptable behaviour on their part"
( So, what else is new?)
It's a complete rejection of the rule of law."
( Yeah? Since when did that matter?)
Justice will not be done behind closed doors in Iran"
(I think he's Got it !)