Channel 4’s decision to allow Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to deliver the Alternative Christmas message is aiding and abetting a homophobic tyrant says gay rights campaigner and Green Party Parliamentary Candidate Peter Tatchell.
President Ahmadinejad is a torturer and a murderer. His regime executes gay people, children, journalists, Sunni Muslims, political dissidents and ethnic minorities. This is the equivalent of giving Robert Mugabe a prime-time television slot to promote his propaganda. It is an insult to more than 100,000 Iranians who have been slaughtered since the Islamic fundamentalists seized power in 1979
Channel 4 should pull the plug on this criminal despot, who ranks with Robert Mugabe, Omar al-Bashir of Sudan and the Burmese military junta as one of the world’s most bloody rulers.
Iran has the death penalty for same-sex relationships. US journalist Doug Ireland has documented the arrest, jailing, flogging and execution of gay Iranians:
Channel 4’s Controller of News and Current Affairs Dorothy Byrne together with the other Channel 4 executives would not being giving Ahmadinejad this propaganda coup if it was their partners or children who were being tortured in Evin prison, Tehran.
This Christmas in Iran, thousands of families are grief-stricken. Their loved ones have been jailed, tortured and executed. Instead of inviting one of them deliver The Alternative Christmas Message, Channel 4 is giving airtime to the man responsible for their loved ones’ suffering.
There is also a Green Party of Iran, an Iranian political party based in exile in Quebec, Canada. As a Green Party, it supports the basic world wide green values, and is one of the Iranian political parties that supports such issues as a secular legal system and gay rights.
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