Jewish org's: Very disturbed by reports from Iran

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May 19, 2006 22:10
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In response to numerous inquires, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations issued the following statement: We are deeply disturbed by reports indicating that the Iranian Parliament (Majlis) may be in the process of adopting legislation that would require religious minorities in Iran -- including Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians -- to adopt distinctive color schemes, or according to some reports, different colored cloth markers that would identify them. This is part of legislation, originally introduced in 2004 but blocked within the Majlis, mandating that Iranians wear standard Islamic garments. We have been seeking to clarify these reports but do not yet have confirmation. There are clear indications that various Iranian government agencies, including the Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, are working on new uniforms to be introduced in the fall. While such legislation would be reminiscent of dark periods in the past, like the Nazi era when Jews and others had to wear identifying badges, it is also consistent with the racist and extremist ideology propagated by President Ahmadinejad. We are monitoring the situation and seeking to ascertain the facts in order to determine the appropriate response. The initial reports have aroused concern in many governmental and non-governmental circles. We are confident that the facts will be clear soon and we will comment further at that time.

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