European Parliament delegation Iran visit cancelled
- Published on Friday, 26 April 2013 18:05
NCRI - A group from the European Parliament has once again had to put off a visit to Iran after pressure from organizations concerned with the human rights record of the Iranian regime.
In a press statement issued Thursday the EP Delegation for Relations with Iran, said that the proposed 2-6 May visit had been “postponed” since the Iranian regime's Parliament was unable “to receive the delegation on the dates proposed.”
"The visit of the Bureau of the Delegation for Relations with Iran of the European Parliament to Iran on 2-6 May has been postponed as it has proved impossible for the Majlis to receive the delegation from the European Parliament on the dates proposed. Alternative dates are being sought," Ms. Tarja Cronberg, the head of the delegation said in a statement.
Last year, the delegation “postponed” a visit at the last minute after the Iranian regime refused to grant access to political prisoners.
The European Parliament has been criticized after it reversed its earlier refusal to send a delegation of MEPs to Iran.
MEP Potito Salatto, Vice President of the EP Delegation for Relations with Iran had stated earlier that he would not participate in the visit.
He said the visit was '' inappropriate'' and "could give the regime a chance" to claim that it is breaking the international isolation especially on the eve of elections in the country.
ECR group leader Martin Callanan, had said the decision "sent mixed signals about our resolve towards the regime", adding, "Parliament is making a profound mistake."
"We cannot send mixed signals to Tehran about our resolve to tackle Iran's nuclear programme and our disgust at its human rights record. We need to stand united and allow relations to be handled through those with experience.
"This visit will be abused by the Iranian authorities for their own propaganda. We should not hand them opportunities.
"The mostly left-wing MEPs on this visit seem to think they will be able to talk the government around into stopping its nuclear programme and improving human rights. Whilst I do not doubt their commitment, they are being utterly naïve."