Jan. 10, 2023
MONTREAL – B’nai Brith Canada informed ministers in the Federal Government nearly a month ago that they should dismiss Iran’s representative at the United Nations aviation agency in Montreal.
In a letter dated Dec. 13, 2022 — sent to the Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs, Melanie Joly, and copied to the Honourable Minister of Public Safety, Marco Mendicino, and the Honourable Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra — B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn asked that Farhad Parvaresh be declared “persona non grata” because of his “callous disregard for global security and his endangerment of Canada’s national security through his association with a fundamentalist designated terror group (the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps).”
Mostyn pointed out that Parvaresh lives and works in Montreal as the Islamic Republic of Iran’s permanent representative at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICA0).
“His previous affiliations compromise the safety of innocent Canadian, Iranian, and other civilians around the world,” Mostyn said. “Prior to his appointment at the ICAO, Parvaresh was the Chairman and President of Iran Air from 2009 to 2017. While he was serving in this role, on May 23, 2013, Parvaresh was designated (by the U.S. Government) for having engaged in proliferation-related activities.”
Mostyn said it is suspected that Parvaresh, through his position as head of Iran Air, “was actively recruited to enable the nefarious actions of members of the Quds Force by furnishing them with the requisite air transportation infrastructure they required to complete their missions abroad.”
The Government of Canada designated the Quds Force as a terrorist organization on Dec. 17, 2012.
“Parvaresh, due to his position at the ICAO, is currently free to reside in Montreal and to unimpededly travel throughout Canada as he desires,” Mostyn said. “A known collaborator with an increasingly hostile regime and designated terrorist group freely traversing Canada’s borders, while enjoying diplomatic protection, significantly delegitimizes the credibility of Canada’s security apparatus and endangers Canadian citizens.
“Allowing Parvaresh to remain in Canada not only presents a threat to our nation’s national security, as the Iranian regime has demonstrated a will to continue to intensify the measures it uses both domestically and abroad to retain control over the country, but amounts to complacent acceptance of the deterioration of human rights internationally.”
Earlier this month, Liberal MP Ali Ehsassi called on the Canadian Government to impose “severe” travel restrictions on Parvaresh. Ehsassi told CBC News the Government has retained lawyers to weigh its options regarding claims that Parvaresh has ties to a terrorist group. CBC reported that Parvaresh denies the allegations.