Tuesday, December 05, 2006

IRNA: Ahmadinejad's remarks on Holocaust "resulted in a bizarre worldwide hue and cry"

They seem to realize this makes them look very bad in the West, but the glorious invincible bastion against the World Arrogance never makes mistakes, does it?
Deputy foreign minister for education and research, Manouchehr Mohammadi, said here Tuesday that the upcoming conference on holocaust aims to provide researchers and intellectuals with the opportunity to examine the issue in a liberal and scientific way.

The international conference on holocaust dubbed `Holocaust: World Prospect' will be held by the Foreign Ministry's Institute for Political and International Studies (IPIS) from December 11-12.

Mohammadi made the remark at a press conference to brief domestic and foreign reporters on the upcoming conference and respond to their questions.

"The event will be attended by 67 foreign intellectuals from 30 countries, who will present their articles on holocaust," he added.

Turning to the points raised by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on holocaust a year ago, which resulted in a bizarre worldwide hue and cry, he said that his opponents attempted to avoid giving him a logical reply by making a big issue of it.

"The president simply asked whether an event called holocaust has actually taken place. Besides, in this case, he wished to know the reason for preventing intellectuals debating the issue and their imprisonment if they cast doubt on the matter.

"What he meant was the need to prepare the grounds for everyone to express themselves on the issue and if this is the case, to know the reason why the Palestinian people should be made to pay for it," he added.

Mohammadi regretted that no rational response was ever given to Ahmadinejad's questions and that even attempts were made to stop them.

"To compensate for such an approach, the Foreign Ministry's IPIS decided to avoid any prejudgment and facilitate scientific assessment of the issue for experts and intellectuals.

"Obviously, such a rational measure resulted in negative reactions and attempts were made to prevent the participation of those wishing to attend the event. Even their passports were confiscated," he added.

The Foreign Ministry official said that during his European tours, he was questioned about Iran's objective on holding such a conference.

"In response to such questions, I said that if they accept holocaust as a historical event, this can be materialized and we wish to provide researchers with the freedom to conduct research on the issue.

"I questioned their actions in disrupting research on holocaust, given the claim of freedom of expression in the West. I told them that when religious sanctities are insulted, they claim that they are free to express themselves, but when it comes to a historical issue, they argue that this is a redline issue," he said.

He noted that out of 90 foreign intellectuals who had submitted articles to the secretariat of the upcoming event, 67 from 30 countries were selected to present them at the conference.

Intellectuals from France, Britain, Australia, Sweden, Germany, Canada, Japan, Russia, Belgium, Austria, Italy, India, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Hungary, Bahrain, Kenya, Malaysia, Turkey, Syria and Algeria will participate in the two-day event.

He said that even followers of Judaism, who will attend the upcoming conference on holocaust, will be welcomed.

Mohammadi added that 34 articles on the issue will be presented by Iranian researchers and intellectuals.

"At the event, various dimensions of holocaust will be examined by six working groups. The relevant documents, written works and the world prospect on the issue will be examined at the workshops to be held on the sidelines of the conference," he noted.

Deputy foreign minister said that the conference on holocaust is an introduction to further seminars on genocide, including the disasters the native Americans, Africans and Palestinians have been through.

Mohammadi said that a conference on genocide in Latin America will be held in Tehran on February 27, 2007, which will be organized by migrants.

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