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Ahwazi opposition activists support London anti-war demonstration

Members of the British Ahwazi Friendship Society (BAFS) will be joining the Stop the War demonstration in London on Saturday.

The march will protest against military intervention in the Middle East, among other issues. BAFS activists will be distributing a leaflet calling for solidarity with those campaigning for grass-roots revolutionary change in Iran and opposing foreign imposition of regime change.

The leaflet also highlights the Iranian regime's ethnic cleansing of Ahwazi Arabs and backs their right for self-determination and human rights.

BAFS spokesman Nasser Bani Assad said: "We want to send out a clear message that opposition to war should not be interpreted as support for the chauvinist regime in Tehran.

"The regime cannot assume that opposition to war means support for its foreign policy objectives. Most anti-war activists agree that the Tehran regime is oppressive and undemocratic, but they say it is up to the people to decide its replacement not foreign governments. Many fear that a military attack on Iran would give the Iranian establishment more excuses to repress minority rights activists, trade unionists, feminists and students.

"Senior members of the British anti-war movement have backed the Ahwazis' rights and have called for an end to Iran's anti-Arab execution campaign in Ahwaz. We hope that by publicising the oppression of Ahwazi Arabs at this demonstration, more progressive-minded people will support the Ahwazi movement."

Among those who have voiced their support for Ahwazi Arab rights are Green MEP Dr Caroline Lucas and left-wing Labour leadership contender John McDonnell.

Following the demonstration, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell will be speaking against war and against the Iranian regime at a Hands Off the People of Iran campaign meeting. He will also speak out against the persecution of Ahwazi Arabs. The meeting will be held at 5pm on Saturday at the Essex Serpent, 6 King Street, Covent Garden, London.

Click here to download the leaflet