Iran’s recent electoral change has been greeted with cautious optimism in the United States and other world capitals, while Harper’s Administration has continued to regard Iran’s intentions as hostile and its new leadership as insincere. Canada is increasingly isolated as the rest of the world repairs links to Iran. The inevitable cost of this will be in lost political, economic, and cultural links with Iran.
The clock is ticking on Iran’s commitment to transparency in confirming its nuclear ambitions are entirely peaceful. Time may tell that U.S. secretary John Kerry’s historic deal with Iran will fail. But in the interests of peace in the region, Canada should be supportive.
The history of external interference and repeated rejection of offers of dialogue from past moderate leaders, especially the false ‘Axis of Evil’ doctrine, has contributed greatly to a continued threat against real democracy and human rights in Iran. Equally, corruption and false rhetoric employed by some Iranian leaders widens the divide between the government and the Iranian people.
The highly educated Iranian civil society should be supported through active, cooperative engagement accompanied by public overtures of dialogue with the Iranian government. There can be no long-term stability in the Middle East if Iran is continually isolated. Real change must come from the Iranian people who in turn must receive a clear signal that nations like Canada not only understand this but are prepared to act in a peaceful, cooperative direction. It is imperative that the mistakes in recent decades not be repeated.
The Iranian economy and environment have suffered greatly from neglect and mismanagement and this plays a significant role in the internal struggle between the government and Iranian people as a whole. Iran faces increasing desertification and soil erosion, putting water and agricultural resources under future threat. Suspected corruption and the suspicions held by many Iranians concerning the safety of Iran’s nuclear program amplify this economic and environmental dilemma. The Green Party recognizes and supports the enormous work of Iranian women who lead the Iranian environmental movement.
The Green Party of Canada condemns the development of, and possession of, nuclear weapons by any nation. We believe the dependence on oil and nuclear energy contributes far too much to global military conflict. Global security can only be achieved through peace, democracy, and real diplomacy.
Green Party MPs will:
Actively re-engage Iran in a new diplomacy, fully cognizant of the history of the region and internal politics of Iran;
Encourage the creation of cooperative programs that offer Iranian civil society members such as lawyers, legislators, judges, civil engineers, environmentalists, and other professionals to directly engage with their professional counterparts in Canada;
Support the Iranian people in their quest to strengthen, through peaceful means, the democratic process within Iran;
Condemn all human rights violations and judicial trials in which torture or police brutality is used;
Support the environmental movement in Iran by working with other countries and the Iranian government to develop cooperative projects within Iran to address the increasing environmental degradation threatening the country;
Call for full Iranian government cooperation with all IAEA inspections and requests concerning Iran’s nuclear program;
Offer any and all diplomatic assistance that facilitates engagement and dialogue between Iran and its regional neighbours to ease tensions and foster the stability and peace desired by citizens of the entire region.