The International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR) is committed to organizing the protests of Iranian refugees and asylum seekers in support of political and social campaigns which:
defend refugee and human rights;
expose the Islamic Republic of Iran;
reveal the progressive and modern character of Iranian refugees in contrast to usual negative and reactionary portrayals;
create a progressive environment among Iranians abroad; and
place this force alongside the progressive forces in their countries of residence.
Hambastegi (Solidarity) is IFIRís bi-monthly publication which promotes its mission.
Established in 1990, IFIR is an international organization with over 40 branches in fifteen countries world-wide. Each branch promotes IFIRís mission in its own country of residence. Any individual/organization who/which believes in IFIRís mission can become a member and activist, as long as s/he has not been involved in the repressive forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran or monarchy. The IFIR Director, elected by branch representatives in bi-annual conferences, provides political guidance and summons international campaigns.
IFIRís accomplishments over the years are many. Recent examples are:
International Efforts Against Turkish Government Successful, September 1997: IFIRís campaign against the Turkish governmentís decision to deport 600 asylum seekers succeeded in canceling their deportation orders, gaining transit visas for those refugees who had been deported to Iraq prior to the initiation of the campaign, and gaining exit visas for those being transferred to a safe resettlement country.
The Dutch Government Backs Down, October 1997: On October 20, 1997 a five-member IFIR delegation was invited to speak at a parliamentary hearing about the Ministry of Foreign Affairsí report on Iran which effectively deemed Iran a safe country. In the face of strong opposition, including mass demonstrations and a sit-in organized by the IFIR Netherlands Branch, the Ministry called for an end to deportations until further investigations were made into the situation in Iran.
Iranian Refugees in Iraq End Successful Sit-in, September 1998: Faced with local pressure from Iranian refugees in Iraqi Kurdistan who had organized a sit-in as well international pressure coordinated by IFIR, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) finally addressed the legitimate demands of the refugees. The UNHCR Iraq Branch Office agreed to doubling food rations, providing medical and pharmaceuticals services, expediting the determination procedures and resettling up to 2,000 refugees.
The Anti-Refugee Policies of the German Government is Condemned, September 1998: A protest campaign summoned by the IFIR German Branch and three other organizations was endorsed by more than 200 organizations. More than 30 thousand individuals participated in the actions which took place in 36 cities throughout Germany.
The Minister of Immigration Backs Down, October 14, 1998: The Canadian Minister of Immigration formally opposed many items on the "Not Just Numbers" Legislation, though she had initially supported it. The legislation was to pass in May of this year but failed as a result of national protests organized by the "Campaign Against the Federal Government Attacks on Immigrants and Refugees," initiated by the IFIR Canada Branch.
Iran is Unsafe, Deportation Must End," November 16, 1998: As a result of the IFIR Swedish Branchís protests, representatives of seven parties in the Swedish parliament signed a recommendation stating that Iran be deemed unsafe and that deportation to Iran be stopped. http://www.hambastegi.org