Analysis • Commentary • Advocacy

Complaints laid against Auckland Muslim leaders and Islamic Republic of Iran diplomat

stiUpdate: IINZ Media Release 30 October 2017

The Israel Institute of New Zealand has written to the Human Rights Commission and to the New Zealand Foreign Minister over statements made at a Pakuranga Mosque.

In a video posted online by the Islamic Ahlulbayt Foundation of New Zealand, a diplomat from the Islamic Republic of Iran said “Today, we are facing the sinister phenomena of terrorism and extremism in the [Middle East], which are fueled and fanned by the enemies of Islam and the Zionist circles,”

Israel Institute of New Zealand director, Prof Paul Moon, said such conspiracy theories needed to be countered by New Zealand ministers. “We cannot allow such unbridled hatred and lies to go unchallenged. The comments are made more absurd by the fact that Iran is considered the foremost state sponsor of terror in the world.” He said the Institute had written to Foreign Minister Peters seeking a formal censure of the Iranian official.

The Israel Institute of New Zealand also submitted a complaint to the Human Rights Commission over other comments made in the video by Iranian cleric, Sheik Shafie, and a New Zealand Muslim leader, Sayed Taghi Derhami, who denied the Holocaust and called for the destruction of Israel.

Shafie said “…the Holocaust is that phenomenon that in itself is not allowed to be investigated and found out what it is… if this Holocaust took place in the second world war in Europe then why not distribute the documents concerning this and let people see for themselves…. It all shows that there is a big scheme and conspiracy to establish the bigger scheme of occupying from the Nile to the Euphrates, which is their final objective.” Derhami said that that Israel is a “cancerous tumor” that had to be “surgically removed”.

Prof Moon says the Israel Institute expects there to be formal censure for the racist speech. “We cannot let Holocaust denial and calls for another to go unchallenged in 2017 New Zealand.”