"No death sentence for Al-Mansouri"

30th October 2007, Comments 0 comments

30 October 2007, AMSTERDAM (dpa) - Dutch-Iranian human rights activist Abdullah al-Mansouri has not been sentenced to death, Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen told Parliament on Tuesday.

30 October 2007

AMSTERDAM (dpa) - Dutch-Iranian human rights activist Abdullah al-Mansouri has not been sentenced to death, Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen told Parliament on Tuesday.

Verhagen (Christian Democrats) said he had received this information from the Iranian ambassador in The Hague as well as authorities in Teheran.

One of his top civil servants is due to travel to Iran next week to ensure Dutch officials will gain access to Al-Mansouri, he said.

Iran has so far denied the Dutch access to him because Teheran does not recognize Al-Mansouri's Dutch nationality, Verhagen added. Diplomats at the Dutch embassy have not been able to attend any hearings that allegedly took place in Al-Mansouri's trial.

Verhagen's request on Tuesday was the second put to the Iranian ambassador in two days to clarify Al-Mansouri's situation and his alleged death sentence.

Verhagen warned the Iranian ambassador there would be "severe consequences", if Iranian authorities did not comply with Dutch demands.

Mansouri's son, Adnan al-Mansouri said he was not impressed by any of the messages from the Iranian authorities. "Iran is afraid to lose face," he said. "That's why they are saying this." He expressed hope that Verhagen had not been misinformed by Iranian authorities.

"The question is whether Verhagen understands who he is dealing with," Adnan al-Mansouri said, adding, "Iran has fooled the Dutch on more than one occasion. It has repeatedly made promises it never kept."

The young Mansouri said he had not yet spoken to sources in Syria and Iran whom he hoped could verify whether there had been a death sentence.

Earlier Tuesday, Adnan al-Mansouri said he had filed a complaint with police in his hometown of Maastricht, in the southern Netherlands as he had received several death threats by phone and mail in the past days, apparently from Iranians.

Mansouri has been trying to free his father since his arrest by Syrian authorities 18 months ago and told reporters he sleeps in a different house every night because he fears for his life.

Verhagen told Parliament on Tuesday he would ask police and secret services to investigate the complaint filed by Adnan Al-Mansouri.

"We do not tolerate Iranian nationals or the Iranian authorities threaten people in the Netherlands," he said.

[Copyright dpa 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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