At a follow-up visit to the Japanese embassy in London today, Bahram Soroush (IFIR) and myself saw First Secretary of the embassy Mr Yokote.
He told us that he had contacted the Japanese immigration authorities who are part of the Ministry of Justice in Japan to enquire about Jamal’s case and he said that the ‘experts on Iran’ saw no compelling reason not to deport Jamal. We explained to him the extent of Jamal’s political activities in the public and the danger he faces if he were to be returned to Iran. We talked at length about the human rights situation in Iran and Mr Yokote assured us that the Japanese government is aware and concerned about the situation. He vehemently denied any underhand dealings with the Iranian regime or any kind of pressure that Japan might be under from Iran. He stressed that Japan is not like Iran and that Japan is a democratic country.
However, the only advice he had for us was to complain via the official channels in Japan. We asked him to relay our demands for Jamal to the Japanese government. We also informed him about the global day of action for Jamal and announced our presence in front of the embassy on 31 March.
Patty Debonitas, London, 24 March 2010