My Blog has Moved to since 1 November 2011

Friday, September 30, 2011

Sharia law is antithetical to human rights

Here is my speech at Melbourne's Wheeler Centre organised by Melbourne PEN and WISA on 23 August 2011 in Australia:

Part 1:

Part 2:

The full talk, including the introduction, speech and questions and answers, is included in a video here.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Mohammad and Abdullah Fathi's birthday party on their graves

The two brothers Mohammad and Abdullah Fathi's birthday was celebrated at their graves recently. The two brothers were executed by the Islamic regime of Iran on 17 May 2011 charged with 'enmity against god'. You can see it here:

Here is video footage of their funeral:

Here's a letter from their brave mother issued soon after the execution.

Urgent Action: Saudi woman faced flogging for driving

Update from Equality Now!

27 September 2011: According to reports, a Saudi woman has been sentenced to flogging for driving a car in Jeddah. The woman, who does not want to be identified out of fear for her safety, was sentenced to ten lashes by a Jeddah court on 27 September 2011 and has appealed the sentence. Reportedly, two other Saudi women are also facing charges for driving. Please write to the Saudi government to repeal the sentence and release this woman and any others in a similar situation. Please continue to express support for the women involved in the Women2Drive campaign and call on the government to lift the ban on women driving.

Take action here.

You can now easily share this action with all of your friends on Facebook & Twitter! Look for the sharing links at the top of the action page!

Please click on the following link for further information as well as full contact information for officials if you wish to fax or send your own personalized letter.

We hope that you will support this and our other Women's Action campaigns.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A United Strike by Thousands of Workers of Mahshahr Petrochemical Complex

We have previously reported that the workers of Bandar Imam Petrochemical Complex in Mahshahr have been on strike, and have been gathered in protest in front of the headquarters of the petrochemical complex since Sunday morning, 3rd of Mehr (25 Sept 2011).

According to another report published by the Iranian Workers' Free Union, workers from Arvand, Amirkabir, and Tondguyan Petrochemicals started their own strike simultaneously with Bandar Imam workers in the early hours of Sunday 25 September.

According to this report, 6000 workers from different shifts participated in the Bandar Imam protest, gathering in front of the headquarters of the complex, marching and chanting their demands.

The main demand of the petrochemical workers in Mahshahr's Special Economic Zone is to eliminate the role of contractors as intermediaries between the workers and the employers. Recall that during the great workers' strike in Farvardin (April) this year, it was officially agreed that within three months, this demand would be fulfilled. But the workers have been continually put off.

The Worker-communist Party of Iran unequivocally supports the united strikes of Mahshahr's petrochemical workers and their just demand, and calls workers in all other work centers to join this struggle for eliminating the role of contractors throughout the entire country, and for other just demands.

Worker-communist Party of Iran
27 September 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

Maryam speaking in Copenhagen 27 September 2011 at 7pm

I will be speaking at a meeting organised by the Danish Atheist Society on 27 September 2011 at 7pm at Designmuseum. Address: Bredgade 68
1260 København.

I will be speaking about the discriminatory nature of Sharia law courts in Europe, the need to oppose Sharia law within the context of a fight against the far-Right and multi-culturalism, and the historical task and duty to defend universal rights, citizenship and secularism.

More information available in the Atheist Society's press release.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Mina Ahadi in Brazil; Iran Solidarity Tour

Mina Ahadi, spokesperson of the International Committee against Stoning (ICAS) will be speaking at the TEDxESPM conference on 29 September in São Paulo, Brazil. The day-long conference will see a host of Brazilian and international achievers talk on the theme of Communication Lighting up Minds.

Mina Ahadi’s speech at the conference coincides with the ‘Iran Solidarity Tour’ which has been organised by ICAS and Iran Solidarity. The Tour aims at building and expanding a solid and influential international network of support and solidarity with the people in Iran in their fight against the Islamic regime of Iran. In a series of events, meetings and campaigns, the Solidarity Tour will keep the struggle of the Iranian people in the world’s mind. Several meetings with organisations and government representatives in Europe and South America have been organised to lobby for the continued and outspoken support of people in Iran.

Mina Ahadi, International Committee against Stoning
Patty Debonitas, Iran Solidarity
20 September 2011

Iran Solidarity, Patty Debonitas, spokesperson,, +44 (0) 7435156444
International Committee against Stoning, Mina Ahadi, spokesperson,, +49 (0) 1775692413

The TEDxESPM conference will be broadcast live at the following link:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

We must keep up the fight against Sharia and for secularism and rights

Dear friend

Arbitration and Mediation (Equality) Bill

We recently wrote to you about the Arbitration and Mediation (Equality) Bill which has been introduced to the House of Lords by Baroness Caroline Cox. Baroness Cox has welcomed us on to her team and we will work together – with various other groups – to promote the passage of the Bill and to persuade members of Parliament to back it. Unfortunately, whilst the Government acknowledged our recent debate and having received numerous letters on this issue, it has already confirmed that it will not support the Bill. We are currently working on a response to this and will share it with you when we can. Baroness Cox has highly praised the work of One Law for All and regularly states that she was ‘inspired’ by us. Here is more information on the Bill.

New Resources

We have recently completed a detailed guide of the family law rights of women living in Britain with regard to divorce, domestic violence, child custody and other issues. In it, we make comparisons with sharia law and inform women that they are not obliged to attend or accept the rulings of any sharia tribunal or council. The book is accompanied by two guidance videos where the law is outlined both for women and lawyers advising them. You can see them here.

Upcoming Events

To see our upcoming events, including talks in Denmark and Lymington, UK, click here.

Children Act

Under sharia law, child custody is awarded to fathers regardless of the circumstances. Under the Children Act, judges and courts of British law are legally obliged to act only in the best interests of the child or children when making decisions on custody, contact etc. One Law for All will soon release our research on the effect that sharia councils and tribunals are having on the well being of children in Britain. On November 22nd, we will hold a seminar which will include legal experts and personal testimony.

Art Festival

Don’t forget our annual art festival, Passion for Freedom , which will run from October 29th to November 5th. More details here.

Previous events

To listen to Anne Marie’s speech at the National Secular Society conference on secularism, visit here. To see Maryam’s speech at the 17 September rally for a secular Europe, click here.

Support us!

Thanks to each and every one of you who has donated to our campaign. If you’d like to and can donate or become a 100Club member, please visit here. Every little does go a long way in the fight against Sharia and for secularism and rights.

Also a reminder that if you shop online, please do so via the Easy Fundraising website. It won’t cost you anything extra but can help raise much needed funds for One Law for All.

Finally, if you haven’t already signed up to the One Law for All campaign, please join the over 28,000 people and groups that have.

Thanks again
Warmest wishes
Anne Marie Waters
One Law for All Spokesperson


To donate to the crucial work of One Law for All, please either send a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal here.

We need regular support that we can rely on and are asking for supporters to commit to giving at least £5-10 a month via direct debit. You can find out more about how to join the 100 Club here.

The One Law for All Campaign was launched on 10 December 2008, International Human Rights Day, to call on the UK Government to recognise that Sharia and religious courts are arbitrary and discriminatory against women and children in particular and that citizenship and human rights are non-negotiable. To join the campaign, sign our petition here.

For further information contact:
Maryam Namazie and Anne Marie Waters
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 7719166731

With Indifference

Listen to the wonderful new up-and-coming band from Liverpool called The Great Divide. They have penned a song as a charity single for the East Africa crisis, titled With Indifference. Listen to them here.

They do what is best about music and art – giving pleasure whilst also bringing attention to religion’s harmful role and helping to change the world one song at a time.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

For a secular Europe and World...

Here is my speech at the 17 September 2011 march and rally for a secular Europe in London:

You can see some of the photos of the event here.

Tonight at LibDem Conference fringe meeting on Liberal response to Sharia law

Maryam Namazie will be speaking at a fringe meeting at the LibDem Federal Conference in Birmingham at 7pm. The discussion entitled the 'Liberal response to Sharia' is organised by the LibDem Humanist and Secularist group. Other speakers include LibDem Peer Baroness Kishwer Falkner. Venue of conference.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Give me an Islamist any day...

The British Humanist Association’s debate on Islam in a Secular Europe reminded me of yet another BBC* sponsored programme.

Every ‘Muslim’ on the panel claimed to represent ‘Muslims’ worldwide as if there are no differences of opinion amongst Muslims or those labelled as such. They had no trouble excusing and trivialising Sharia law, the burka, child veiling, sex apartheid [Maleiha Malik even spoke of fatwa shopping as if women’s desperation to secure justice is a joke].

They deemed universal rights and secularism western concepts and asked for people to mind their own business quoting Shirin Ebadi no less.

And no matter how many times you said your opposition was with Islamism and a defence in fact of Muslims, they still branded you a racist and took on a form of victim status in order to help pave the way for reaction.

Humeira Iqtida (author of Secularising Islamists) and Maleiha Malik (professor of law) are textbook cases of this sort of strategy; Aina Khan (Sharia lawyer) is another example.

Frankly, give me an Islamist any day. At least they are honest.

Algerian sociologist and founder of Women Living Under Muslims Laws Marieme Hélie-Lucas rightly says Islamists always start with women, which is part of their broader agenda, because many (including the likes of Humeira, Malieha and Aina) are always prepared to trade women’s rights. Malieha says no one is being stoned as if denial of women's rights in the family is any less scandalous.

Sadly for them, though, there are still many of us – Muslims and non - who are unwilling to make such a trade and who continue to give precedence to real live human beings rather than religion and medievalism.

* Known as Ayatollah BBC in Iran for its support of some form or other of Islamism.

Women against the Law

Women Against the Law, The Spirit of Things, ABC Radio, 18 September 2011 [external link]

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Saturday, September 17, 2011

17 September march and rally for a secular Europe

One Law for All Spokesperson Maryam Namazie will be speaking at the Secular Europe Campaign rally on 17 September 2011. The march will assemble from 10.30am at Temple Place. It will then proceed through central London. At the arrival point at 12.30pm there will be the final rally with speeches.

Spokesperson Anne Marie Waters sends out a call to join the 17 September rally:

Assembly (10.30 am): Temple Place (Victoria Embankment)
March (11.30-12.30 am) : Victoria Embankment, Bridge Street, Whitehall
Rally (12.30-2.30pm): Richmond Terrace (opposite Downing Street)
The Rally opposite Downing Street has already been authorised by the Metropolitan Police Service.

For more information, click here.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Tonight: Panel Discussion on Islam in a secular Europe

Maryam Namazie will be speaking on a panel discussion on Islam in a secular Europe at Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London, WC1R 4RL from 7:00pm – 9:30pm, on Friday 16 September 2011. Other speakers are Yahya Birt, the Commissioning Editor at Kube Publishing and co-editor of British Secularism and Religion: Islam, Society and the State; David Blatherwick, diplomat, writer, distinguished supporter of Humanism, and current Trustee for the British University in Egypt; Humeira Iqtida, lecturer at King’s College London and author of Secularising Islamists? Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamaat-ud-Dawa in Pakistan;and Maleiha Malik, Professor in Law at King’s College London teacher of courses in Jurisprudence and Legal Theory, Discrimination Law and European Law.

Tickets: £10 general (£8 concession)

For more information and to register for the discussion, click here.

Romanian Youtube Sensation

Read about Christiana Rad here, the atheist Youtube sensation.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The people of Libya did not revolt for a Karzai-type government

Mustafa Abdul Jalil, Ghadafi's former Justice Minister and current head of the “National Transitional Council” of Libya, has rejected both “fundamentalist Islam” and “secularism,” and declared in his first speech that the government of Libya will be a “modern and democratic” one based on “moderate Islam and sharia law.” In other words, he promises the people of Libya a government like Karzai's in Afghanistan.

This is not what the people of Libya have risen up for. The Ghadafi regime was also a form of “moderate Islamic government.” The promised government of Mr. Abdul Jalil can only be as “modern and democratic” as Ghadafi's regime. Ghadafi's ex-Justice Minister may not have a problem with this but those masses of people who, for more than 6 months, fought heroically and forced the dictator to flee, are not going to be satisfied with another version of the same government.

Clearly, this is the prescribed desirable alternative for Western governments too. One objective of NATO’s military involvement was to put in place a Karzai-type government as the “fruits” of the Libyan revolution, and now, the task of assembling such a government has been delegated to Ghadafi's former minister, in the same way that this role has been given in Egypt to Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, an ex-Mubarak general.

Facing the remnants of the overthrown regimes and their Western government cohorts are the people who have risen up and demanded prosperity, freedom, equality and a humane life. Islam, of any kind, is fundamentally antithetical to these demands and wishes of the people. No one understands this better than the people of Iran who have lived under the yoke of Islamic rule and Sharia law for more than 30 years.

Our message to the people of Libya and other countries who have risen up is this: Do not allow Islam - be it “moderate,” “fundamentalist,” or with any other label - in the government, educational system and judiciary. Secularism is a basic prerequisite for securing freedom, welfare, and respect for human beings and humanity in any society. Particularly in the current revolutions in Islam-ridden societies - from the 2009 revolution in Iran through to the Tunisian, Egyptian, Libyan, and Syrian revolutions - a commitment to secularism is a fundamental precondition to any form of freedom-seeking, and is an important indicator for differentiating revolutionary forces from reactionary ones.

We must be hopeful and resolutely support the continued struggle of the people of Libya, like of Egypt, in standing up against the reactionary front of the transitional government put together by Western governments, Islamists, and the remnants of toppled regimes until the achievement of “bread, freedom, and human dignity.”

Worker-communist Party of Iran
13 September 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

We don't want Sharia in Libya

The head of the Transitional National Council of Libya has said that Sharia law will be the main source of legislation in Libya.

Listen to a debate on BBC's Have Your Say programme today where I speak against Sharia and others in favour. As usual, I am the only secularist on the panel (well at least this time the BBC didn't leave me out!)

Surprise, surprise, Aina Khan who feigns to be a women's rights defender but only seems to defend Sharia and sweep its realities under the carpet, was there to promote its use and lie through her teeth about it; I suppose she does need to make sure sharia stays around so she can carry on making money from the misogyny! She is a 'Sharia lawyer' after all.

Here is the debate.

Secularists need to come forward now. We must stand vigilant against Islamism, but rather than dooming the revolutionary movements to failure, we must recognise and unequivocally defend them, help them expand and gain depth, and instead emphasise their modern and human dimensions which are diametrically opposed to Islamism. We must help mobilise support and solidarity for a secular, modern and human Libya, Middle East and North Africa.

Stop the execution of Troy Davis, an innocent man in Georgia. Sign his sister’s petition.

Radical Women sent me this urgent action. I've signed the petition; please take a few minutes to do the same. Troy must not be executed. How utterly disgusting that a state dares to execute a citizen in broad daylight on behalf of society. This is, according to Mansoor Hekmat, the most deplorable form of deliberate murder.

Troy Davis has 10 days to live before he is executed by the State of Georgia. But 7 witnesses say Troy is innocent, and that another man committed the crime for which he will be killed.

With just days left to save Troy’s life, his sister Kim Davis started a petition on asking the Georgia Parole Board to stop his execution. Please add your name to Kim’s petition now and save her brother’s life.

Evidence presented at Troy’s trial was considered shaky at the time. Since then, seven witnesses have recanted their testimony, many saying they were pressured by police into false testimony.

There’s no physical evidence Troy committed the crime. And, according to Amnesty International, nine people have signed affidavits implicating another man.

Please click here to add your name to Kim Davis' petition asking the Georgia Parole Board to stop her brother’s execution.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Maryam Namazie's interview with Mersedeh Ghaedi on Australia visit in Persian

To see Maryam's interview with Mersedeh Ghaedi on New Channel TV on her recent visit to Australia, click here or see the below:

Friday, September 09, 2011

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani - One Year On

It has been one year to the day that the spokesperson of the Islamic regime’s foreign ministry announced that Sakineh Ashtiani’s ‘…verdict regarding the extra-marital affair has stopped and it is being reviewed.’

This announcement came in the midst of a massive, international campaign to save Sakineh Ashtiani from death by stoning. No doubt, under the immense attention and appeals from across the world, the Iranian regime tried to buy time. Since that time last year, Sakineh has been forbidden to receive visitors; she has no access to her family or a lawyer. By isolating her and intimidating and harassing her relatives and supporters, the Iranian regime wishes that the utter disgrace of trying to kill yet another innocent woman might vanish from the face of the international arena. But it won’t.

Sakineh has come to represent the suffering of a nation under the Islamic regime of Iran’s rule - with all its injustice, barbarity, misogyny and violence.

They tried to discredit Sakineh and those that support her in Iran and internationally - all to make their barbarity more acceptable to the international community. In vain. The world has stopped buying the lies of the regime and the world is waiting for the safe release of Sakineh Ashtiani and her lawyer Houtan Kian who is also still in prison. The world is waiting for the release of all those other, as yet faceless, women and men who linger in the regime’s dungeons.

We are waiting for real justice to be handed out in an international criminal court to those who have been crushing life and dignity with their rulebooks, batons, fists and guns.

Sakineh Ashtiani’s stoning sentence has not been revoked.

We will not give up pushing for the safe release of Sakineh Ashtiani and her lawyer Houtan Kian.

Patty Debonitas
Iran Solidarity
Sakineh Ashtiani - one year on

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Visual report of September 3 protests

Here are the images from the 3 September protests in various cities in Germany, Cyprus, Canada, Sweden and the USA.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

TODAY: Demonstrations in defence of people of Iraqi Kurdistan

Condemn the Governments of Iran and Turkey’s invasive policies!

The people of Kurdistan in the frontier region of Iran, Turkey and Iraq have been under the Iranian artillery fire and the Turkish jet fighters’ attacks during the past month, on the pretext of fighting the armed forces of two organisations: PKK and Pejak.

These bombardments were accompanied by cannons and artillery from the two bordering countries of Iraqi Kurdistan and military attacks on villages, as a result of which many people were killed, wounded, displaced and a great deal of casualties was caused. In just one day, on August 21st, seven civilians from a family, including a child, lost their lives as a result of the Turkish air raid. Kurdistan Regional Government’s authorities and the Kurdish media in Iraq stated that the inhabitants of 35 villages have been forced from their homes due to these attacks.

This is just a part of the atrocities of the governments, armed forces, and terrorist gangs operating in Iraq and pursuing its own reactionary aims. Up until now, the Iraqi government and Kurdistan Regional Government have not reacted to these crimes against people. This silence is due to the reactionary nature of these governments, their etnic-religious composition, and their wheelings and dealings with the regimes of Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, etc. The people of Iraqi Kurdistan are in a tight corner of repression and crime caused by the governments of Iran, Turkey, Iraq and the U.S on one hand and nationalist, reactionary, and ethnic forces as Pejak or PKK on the other – whose aim is only to gain a share of power. The people are victims of power struggles among these reactionary forces. A vigorous defence of the people of Iraqi Kurdistan is an urgent task of freedom-loving people, a civilised world, and socialism.

Worker-communist Party of Iran expresses its deepest solidarity with the people of Iraq and the people of Iraqi Kurdistan, against the insecure situation caused by the involved forces, and strongly condemns the criminal aggressions of the Islamic Republic of Iran and Turkey. We call on all freedom-loving people and political forces in Iraq, Turkey, Iran, and the whole world to come to the forefront in condemnation of the governments of Turkey and Iran and against the military climate in the region.

Worker-communist Party of Iran
August 23, 2011

See also Issam Shukri on the situation in Iraqi Kurdistan and the actions by the Islamic regime of Iran and the Turkish government:


Global Demonstrations in Defense of People in Iraqi Kurdistan,
against the Atrocities of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Turkish Government!

Time: September 3, 2-4 pm
Place: Turkish Consulate General, 10 Lower Spadina Avenue, Suite 300 Toronto, M5V 2Z2
Organiser: WPI & LWPI
Contact: 416 858 6974, 647 298 0409

Time: September 3, 5-7pm
Place: In front of the Art Gallery, Robson & How

Time: Saturday 3 September 2011, 10-11am
Place: Islamic Republic Embassy
Contact: Amir Masoud Khaghani, tel: 99170803
Organized by: Cyprus Refugee Rights Movement

Time: September 3, 1-5pm
Place: Hauptwache
Organiser: LWPI & WPI

Time: September 3, 5pm
Place: Domplatte
Organiser: LWPI & WPI

Date: September 3
Time: 4pm
Place: Isarinselfest, in front of Lukaskirche
Organizer: Petra Plötz, 0176-50728972

Time: September 3, 2-4pm
Place: Stora torget.
Contact: Esmail Mardukh 0 737 59 85 66

Time: September 3, 1-3pm
Place: Brunnsparken
Contact: Abe Asadi 0737178819

Time: September 3, 1-3pm
Place: Davidshallsbron
Contact: Farideh Arman 0703638088

Time: September 3, 4-5pm
Place: Stortorget
Organiser: Mission Free Iran

Time: September 3, 4-5pm
Place: Sävsjö Centrum
Organiser: Mission Free Iran
Contact: 0736561595

Washington DC
Date: Saturday 3 September 2011
Time: 1-3pm
Place: Embassy of Turkey (2525 Massachusetts Ave NW) starting at 1pm, then at 2pm move to protest at the offices of the Islamic Republic of Iran (2209 Wisconsin Ave) and protest for an hour.
Organizer: Mission Free Iran
Contact:; +1-240-595-2633

Friday, September 02, 2011

In depth interview with Maryam Namazie on ABC News 24's One Plus One programme

To see Maryam Namazie's indepth interview with Virginia Hausegger on ABC News 24's One Plus One program broadcast on 2 September 2011, click here.