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Karim Abdian leads the Ahwazi voice at the United Nations

General Secretary of AHRO, Dr Karim Abdian, attended the twelfth session of "The United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII)" in New York City in May. Dr Abdian addressed issues such as the persecution and ethnic cleansing of indigenous Ahwazi Arabs in their home land by the Iranian regime.  
The Forum allows all participating NGOs, the World Bank and civil organisations cooperation and support in order to establish a supportive network for Indigenous Peoples. It aims to help them provide their nations and their NGOs with the essential means to further human development and fight poverty and racial discrimination.  
During the first week of the event by the Forum, international experts examined their reports on indigenous youth such as identity, challenges and hope (Articles 14 and 25 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (E/C.19/2013/3)). The Forum also discussed and analysed other issues such as health, education, culture, human rights and violence against of indigenous women and girls (Article 22(2)). 
Dr Abdian gave an extensive and detailed report highlighting issues such as health, low levels of human development among indigenous Ahwazi Arabs, environmental crises, violence against women and girls and human rights violations by the Iranian regime. Abdian also drew attention to educational problems among indigenous Ahwazi Arab youth due to a lack of schooling in their mother tongue since they are forced by the Iranian regime to study with Persian language.
During the event Dr Abdian managed to register AHRO with the newly established Forum of the Indigenous Peoples, an historical achievement for the Ahwazi NGO that will bolster the support network with the Forum and other NGOs in order to raise the awareness on Ahwazi cause.
Dr Abdian had the opportunity to meet with many representatives and ambassadors of Western and Arab countries at the event and provided them with the most up-to-date news and human rights violations against indigenous Ahwazi Arabs. He had supplementary meetings with Egyptian, Iraqi and Palestinian ambassadors in which he called for political and media support for the Ahwazi cause.    
Dr Abdian also met with Mr Jeffrey Trimble, the Deputy Director of the International Broadcasting Bureau which runs Voice of America, and Mrs Lynne Weil, Director of Communications and External Affairs at the Broadcasting Board of Governors.
Concerns were raised about the power of the Persian lobby, namely the NIAC, National Iranian American Council which supports the Islamic Republic under the ruse of campaigning against the war on Iran. The Persian lobby attempted to underestimate and deny persecution and racism suffered by non-Persian nations.  The lobby has also extensively working to prevent and close down the media coverage of the Free Iraqi Channel since the channel tried to present and show the truth on the news on human rights violations against non-Persian nations generally and indigenous Ahwazi Arabs in particular.  

From AHRO newsletter, June 2013