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Ahwazis at Downing Street

Ahwazi Arab representatives will visit 10 Downing Street on 21 April to urge the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown to prioritise Ahwazi Arab rights in all bipartisan talks with Iran and at a European level. They will provide the Prime Minister with details of the latest atrocities against Ahwazi Arabs, including the recent halt in drinking water supplies to Arab villages along the Shatt al-Arab.

The Downing Street visit marks the conclusion of a series of events held in London in April to mark both the third anniversary of the peaceful Ahwazi uprising, in which over 160 Arabs were killed by security forces, as well as the life of Ahwazi Arab leader Mansour Silawi al-Ahwazi, who died recently in London.

Ahwazi Arabs have engaged in a successful lobbying campaign in the British Parliament. The British Ahwazi Friendship Society (BAFS) has given evidence at the Conservative Human Rights Commission in the Palace of Westminster.

An Early Day Motion promoted by BAFS, which condemned the "long-running persecution of the Ahwazi Arabs" and mass executions of Ahwazi Arab activists, was signed by 49 Members of Parliament from across the political spectrum, including the Chair of the British Parliament's powerful Intelligence and Security Committee, Paul Murphy.

Foreign Minister Kim Howell has also voiced his "deep concern" about Iran's execution of Ahwazi Arabs and has pledged to take "all available opportunities to make clear to the Iranian authorities our concerns about minority rights in Iran."

BAFS spokesman Nasser Bani Assad said: "It is vital that the British government maintains pressure on Iran to help stop the violent persecution of Ahwazi Arabs. We are pleased to have this opportunity to visit Downing Street to lodge our concerns."