• Iranian Christians

    09 October 2017

    Dear Constituent

    Thank you for contacting me about judicial harassment of Iran's religious and ethnic minorities. 
    I think it is fair to say that the Iranian Government has an appalling human rights record. That is a matter of great sadness, given the richness and diversity of Iranian civilisation and culture, and the fact that its best traditions accord respect to religious minorities.
    President Rouhani pledged to improve the rights and freedoms of the citizens of Iran when he was elected in 2013. He also promised reforms on discrimination against members of ethnic minorities, and greater space for freedom of expression and opinion. However, there has been little evidence of positive change.
    The British Government does all it can to encourage the Iranian Government to adopt the kinds of human rights standards that we would expect from a country with a rich civilisation. Indeed, the Minister of State for the Middle East raised concerns regarding the persecution of religious and ethnic minorities with the Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister during a visit to Iran on 5 August.
    Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.

    Yours sincerely

    Mel Stride

    MP for Central Devon

    Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General