Ararat News –Publishing (ANP) – Anahit Khatchikian / Roni Alasor,  Brussels – 10 / 6 / 2009 –  Last weekend Iranian oppositional organisations, parties and intellectuals hold two days conference in Brussels to discuss the upcoming presidential elections in Iran on 12th June. The majority of the represented organisations declared that will boycott the elections. The meeting organised by Mr Kawa Ahangari (Beyan association) and Mr Anwar Mirsattari (Europress Federation), was held in the International Press Centre. Among the speakers were Mr Mostafa Shalmashi (Kurdistan Democratic Party – PDK), Mr Raof Kabi (Union of People’s Fedaian of Iran), Mr Mohammad Mesry (Komala party of Iranian Kurdistan), Mr Hassan Makaremi (Committee for the defence of human rights in Iran), Mr Mehrdad Darvishpour, sociologist (Coordination of Laique and Democratic Movement of Iran), Mehdi Fattahpour (Republicans union of Iran), Behrooz Khaligh (Fadaiian of Iranien People organization, Majority), Rassekh Mahmood, (Member of the Committee of the Iranian Socialists) and Hassan Makaremi, treasurer (Human rights defence society of Iran). Iranian intellectuals also attend the conference: Hedayat Matindaftari, jurist and Iranian intellectual, Niloofar Beyzaie, play writer and theatre director. Simin Behbahani, poet, intellectual and one of the pioneers for gender equality in Iran, was also invited, but she was not allowed to attend by the Iranian authorities, so she sent her audio message to the guests of the conference. Vincent Lurquin, the only attorney in Belgium for international crimes and attorney of the relatives of mass murdered political prisoners during the last recent 30 years in Iran, was among the speakers as well.

After two days hard discussion and debate between 40-50 political activists, all the Iranian oppositional organisations and intellectuals condemned the lack of democracy and freedom of speech and elections in Iran, and the continuous human rights violations. Despite the consensus on these points, the participants in the conference were split regarding the boycott of the elections or the support for any of the candidates. While the majority of the opposition is boycotting the elections, because they believe that none of the presidential candidates has aim or capacity to make real reforms in the theocratic system of Iran, the Kurdistan Democrat Party (PDK) and the Free Life Party of Kurdistan (PJAK) prefer to leave the choice and the decision to the Iranian and Kurdistani people. Only one political movement, Republicans union of Iran, declares openly that people should to vote.

On the other hand, Ararat News learned from Iranian sources that the Congress of Nationalities for a Federal Iran is also divided regarding the elections. The Kurdistan Democrat Party – Iran, leaded by Mustafa Hicri, and Komala Soresgeri Zehmetkesani Kurdistani – Iran and Turkmen National Democratic Movement did not attend the conference, but they join the boycott. Other members of the Congress of Nationalities for a Federal Iran – as Cultural & civil Society of Khorasani Kurds, Kurdistan Freedom Party, Balochistan People’s Front, Balochistan United Front Federal Republican, Baluchistan National Movement – Iran, Party of United Lurestan and Bakhtiari, Balochistan Peoples Party, Democratic Solidarity Party of al-Ahwaz – would let the choice to the people.

People’s Mujahedin of Iran who was not invited to the meeting, supports also the boycott.    

46 million Iranians will have to choose on 12 June among four candidates for the presidential elections: the actual President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is seeking a second term in office, the two leading reformists – former Prime Minister Mir-Hossein Mousavi and ex-parliament chairmen Mehdi Karoubi, and the former Revolutionary Guards chief, Mohsen Rezai.