Aladdin Project President tells President Rouhani to stop Iran’s policy of Holocaust denial, anti-Semitic statements in state-run media


 

Paris-based NGO calls on Iranian president to stop Iran’s policy of Holocaust denial, anti-Semitic statements in state-run media

 

                                                                           Press  Release                                                                             

    Thursday, November 14, 2013

 

 

Anne-Marie Revcolevschi, President of the Aladdin Project, tells Iran’s President Rouhani:

“Your state-run media’s anti-Semitic tirades against the French Foreign Minister are every bit as unacceptable as your predecessor’s rants about the Holocaust.”

“The recent dispatch by Fars News Agency accusing the Aladdin Project of being ‘one of the most important Zionist initiatives to woo the Muslims in the Middle East’ is utter nonsense.”

“The filtering of our Persian-language website on the Holocaust is unacceptable.”

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The president of an international NGO working to promote Holocaust awareness in the Muslim world today called on Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to reverse Iran’s policy of Holocaust denial and trivialization, stop anti-Semitic declarations by official Iranian institutions and end his government’s filtering of the NGO’s Persian-language website[1] in Iran.

“President Rouhani’s interviews in New York back in September created the impression that Iran would now end Holocaust denial and trivialization and anti-Semitic statements in the country’s state-run media,” said Anne-Marie Revcolevschi, President of the Paris-based Aladdin Project. “But two months later, there is unfortunately no indication that the policy has been reversed.”

Revcolevschi gave examples to back her claim that “beyond the Iranian president’s charm offensive, nothing has changed regarding Tehran’s Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism”:

-          The state-run website, Monazereh.ir, which belongs to the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting Corporation (IRIB), published an overtly anti-Semitic article on November 11 about French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. “According to French historian Robert Faurisson, Fabius is a Jew,” the article notes, adding that when Fabius was Speaker of the French parliament, he and others used the desecration of a Jewish cemetery, “stage-managed by Zionists”, as a pretext to pass the “Fabius-Gayssot Act, according to which, anyone questioning the existence of gas chambers or the exaggerated figure of six million Jews killed in World War II is punished with one month to one year imprisonment, will have to pay a fine, will lose his job and life will become intolerable for him, his children and his family… This is one example of Fabius’s services to Zionism in France.” 

-          The Iranian government has filtered the website of the Aladdin Project (www.projetaladin.org), which provides information about Holocaust history and Jewish-Muslim relations in Arabic, Persian, Turkish, English and French. Before being filtered, the website used to receive thousands of visits every month from across Iran. Readers in Iran have downloaded thousands of digital copies of Persian translations of Anne Frank’s Diary, Primo Levi’s If This Is a Man and seven other classic books on the Holocaust from the NGO’s website.

-          The Aladdin Project catalogued 204 books on display at Tehran International Book Fair in May this year that had overtly anti-Semitic or Holocaust denying or trivializing content. The government of President Rouhani has given no instructions to the relevant government agencies to stop the production and distribution of these books.

-          The semi-official Fars News Agency put out a 1500-word article earlier this week, lambasting the Aladdin Project as a creation of “International Zionism” seeking to persuade Muslim countries “to recognize the Zionists’ fabricated narrative about the Holocaust, which will enable them to present the creation of [Israel] as both legitimate and necessary.”

The Iranian news agency  described the Aladdin Project as “one of the most important initiatives of International Zionism in its bid to woo Muslims in the Middle East and impact public opinions in different Islamic countries.”

“Iran’s state-run media use these unfounded attacks to discredit the Aladdin Project among the many Iranians who have visited our website, read our books or watched Claude Lanzmann’s Shoah with Persian subtitles on satellite television channels,” said Revcolevschi.

She pointed out that the Aladdin Project had been launched under the auspices of UNESCO and with the support of the French government and a large number of political, religious and civic leaders across the Muslim world, to reject Holocaust denial and promote Jewish-Muslim relations on the basis of mutual knowledge and mutual respect with purely educational and cultural programs.

“President Rouhani is not going to convince us that he has made a clean break with his predecessor’s policies if he doesn’t act on these issues,” said Anne-Marie Revcolevschi. “If he wants us to trust his words, he must show us his actions. So far, it looks like more of the same.”