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Back Activities Alerts Action Alert: India/Israel – Write letters pressing Indian authorities to release Syed Kazmi

Action Alert: India/Israel – Write letters pressing Indian authorities to release Syed Kazmi

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Indian journalist a pawn in Israel’s covert war against Iran

Contents

1. Summary
2. Background
3. Action required
4. Sample letter
5. Addresses for sample letters

1. Summary

Syed Mohammed Ahmad Kazmi has been under police custody since 6 February. The allegations that he masterminded a bombing in Delhi are deeply politicised, and are part of Israel’s efforts to garner support for a war against Iran.

Write to the Indian Minister for Home Affairs, and your country’s Indian High Commissioner or ambassador.

2. Background

Syed Mohammed Ahmad Kazmi – a well established journalist based in Delhi – was taken from the Indian Islamic Centre into police custody on 6 March. His son Shauzab was intimidated into signing his father’s arrest memo on 7 March, and Syed Kazmi has been under arrest since then.

He is facing the allegation that he helped to coordinate a 13 February bombing which targeted the wife of the Israeli defence attaché. Among the allegations put against him are that he and his family received Iranian guests at their home, and that a black scooter belonging to a relative might have been used in the attack.

These accusations have been vehemently denied by Mohammad and his family. They and many others object to the manner in which Syed Kazmi – who has worked for Iranian media – is being targeted because of his opposition to Zionism and views on India-Iran relations. They also feel that he is being targeted because his work entails frequent travel to Iran.

Over seventy well-known Indian citizens have signed a statement condemning the arrest of Mohammad, stating that he is being used as a scapegoat by Israel. N.D. Pancholi – a human rights lawyer – has said that the case of Syed Kazmi is indicative not only of basic freedoms and civil liberties being violated, but also the manipulation of the Indian judicial system by other states.

Syed Kazmi has been detained in a context where both the United States and Israel have increased their sanctions and threats of war against Iran. The mere fact that Syed Kazmi has associated with Iranians, and has vocally supported Iran’s right to nuclear enrichment, is being criminalised and presented by the Western media as an indication of his involvement in terrorism.

Syed Kazmi has reported of being threatened by plain-clothed interrogators to be handed over to Israeli intelligence services in order to extract a confession. Moreover, his arrest coincided with the arrival of the Israel’s National Security Advisor, Yaakov Amidror, to India.

3. Action Required

IHRC requests its campaigners and supporters to write letters and emails to the Indian Minister for Home Affairs, Shri Palaniappan Chidambaram; and the Indian High Commissioner/ ambassador to their country. Demand that Syed Kazmi is not made a scapegoat as Israel seeks to justify a war against Iran.

4. Sample letter
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Sample letters are given below for your convenience. Please note that model letters can be sent directly or adjusted as necessary to include further details. If you receive a reply to the letter you send, we request you to send a copy of the letter you sent and the reply you received to IHRC. This is very important as it helps IHRC to monitor the situation with regards to our campaigns and to improve upon the current model letters.

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a) Shri Palaniappan Chidambaram, Indian Minister for Home Affairs.
Shri Palaniappan Chidambaram,
Indian Minister for Home Affairs,
19 Safdarjung Road,
New Delhi - 110 011,
INDIA.

Telephone: (011) 23792222

[Your name]
[Your address]

[Date]

Dear Shri Palaniappan Chidambaram,

Re: Interference in the investigations of the 13 February bombing in Delhi.

I am writing to convey my opposition to the interference of Israel in investigations concerning the 13 February bomb attack in Delhi. This interference is aimed at exploiting the bombing to garner Indian support for a military attack on Iran by Israel. It is clear that the arrest of Syed Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi – a well-respected journalist – is politicised.

Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi has worked as a freelance journalist for almost thirty years, and is accredited by the Press Information Bureau (PIB). Based in Delhi, he has covered conflicts such as the Iran-Iraq war and the invasion of Iraq by US-led coalition forces for media outlets such as IRNA, IRIB, Doordarshan and BBC.

Mohammad is now facing allegations that he masterminding the bomb attack on 13 February, which targeted the wife of the Israeli defence attaché in Delhi. It is clear that Mohammad Kazmi – whose journalistic and professional records are impeccable – is being targeted due to his affiliation with an Iranian news agency, and the frequent travel to Iran that his job entails. Yet he has not even been charged a month after he was first detained.

He has claimed that he has been threatened by plain-clothed interrogators to be handed over to Israeli intelligence so that they may extract a forced confession. This is a serious allegation which raises many questions regarding India’s sovereignty. It should be addressed by the Indian government if it is to be considered able to protect its own citizens, and in command of Indian internal affairs. There is at present very little confidence that Syed Kazmi’s case is being handled justly and in accordance with Indian law.

India must not subordinate its judicial system to the political whims of Israel. Nor should Indian citizens be at the mercy of foreign intelligence services, or forced to suffer because of the agendas of other states and governments.

I request that as Minister for Home Affairs, you address immediately the grave concerns that the investigations into the 13 February bombing are being spearheaded by Israel and its intelligence services. Unless a charge can be brought to Mohammad Kazmi, he must furthermore be released immediately from police custody. I call upon you to personally ensure that this happens.

I look forward to you reply.

Yours sincerely,

[Your signature]
[Your name]

b) Dr J. Bhagwati, Indian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom.
Dr J. Bhagwati, High Commissioner,
High Commission of India,
India House
Aldwych
London
WC2B 4NA

Email: hc.office@hcilondon.in

[Your name]
[Your address]

[Date]

Dear Dr J. Bhagwati,

Re: Interference in the investigations of the 13 February bombing in Delhi.

I am writing to convey my opposition to the interference of Israel in investigations concerning the 13 February bomb attack in Delhi. This interference is aimed at exploiting the bombing to garner Indian support for a military attack on Iran by Israel. It is clear that the arrest of Syed Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi – a well-respected journalist – is politicised.

Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi has worked as a freelance journalist for almost thirty years, and is accredited by the Press Information Bureau (PIB). Based in Delhi, he has covered conflicts such as the Iran-Iraq war and the invasion of Iraq by US-led coalition forces for media outlets such as IRNA, IRIB, Doordarshan and BBC.

Mohammad is now facing allegations that he masterminding the bomb attack on 13 February, which targeted the wife of the Israeli defence attaché in Delhi. It is clear that Mohammad Kazmi – whose journalistic and professional records are impeccable – is being targeted due to his affiliation with an Iranian news agency, and the frequent travel to Iran that his job entails. Yet he has not even been charged a month after he was first detained.

He has claimed that he has been threatened by plain-clothed interrogators to be handed over to Israeli intelligence so that they may extract a forced confession. This is a serious allegation which raises many questions regarding India’s sovereignty. It should be addressed by the Indian government if it is to be considered able to protect its own citizens, and in command of Indian internal affairs. There is at present very little confidence that Syed Kazmi’s case is being handled justly and in accordance with Indian law.

India must not subordinate its judicial system to the political whims of Israel. Nor should Indian citizens like Syed Kazmi be at the mercy of foreign intelligence services, or forced to suffer because of the agendas of other governments.

I request that as High Commissioner for India in the UK, you address immediately the grave concerns that the investigations into the 13 February bombing are being spearheaded by Israel and its intelligence services. Unless a charge can be brought to Syed Kazmi, he must furthermore be released immediately from police custody. Please convey this message to the Indian government.

I look forward to you reply.

Yours sincerely,

[Your signature]
[Your name]

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5. Addresses for sample letters
a) Shri Gurjit Singh; Ambassador of India (designate) to Indonesia.
Embassy of India
JL HR Rasuna Said, Kav S-1
Kuningan, Jakarta Selatan, 12950
INDONESIA.

Email: ambasador@net-zap.com

b) Mr Vijay K. Gokhale; Indian High Commissioner to Malaysia.
Mr Vijay K. Gokhale,
High Commission of India,
No. 2 Jalan Taman Duta,
Off Jalan Duta,
50480 Kuala Lumpur,
MALAYSIA.

Email: hc@indianhighcommission.com.my

c) His Excellency Shashishekhar Madhukar Gavai; Indian High Commissioner to Canada.

High Commission for the Republic of India,
10 Springfield Road,
Ottawa,
Ontario,
K1M 1C9,
CANADA.

Email: hicomind@hciottawa.ca

d) Mr Biren Nanda; Indian High Commissioner to Australia (designate).

Mr Biren Nanda,
The High Commission of India,
3 - 5 Moonah Place,
Yarralumla, ACT – 2600,
AUSTRALIA.

Email: dhc@hcindia-au.org

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Holy Qur’an: Chapter 4, Verse 75

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