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Dutch banning Iran researchers.

The Netherlands has banned Iranian researchers from the country, citing UN and EU sanctions.

Foreign Minister Uri Rosenthal told Parliament his ministry has decided to reject visa and residency applications from Iranians who wish to conduct research at Dutch universities and other institutions.

The announcement did not appear to limit the ban to technical fields like nuclear science.

Rosenthal said Iranians already in the Netherlands conducting research would not have their visa or residency permits renewed when they expire.

While Rosenthal said the decision was prompted by UN and EU sanctions, no other country has issued such a sweeping ban on Iranian researchers. Restrictions have been imposed by some countries on Iranian students in highly technical fields like nuclear science and physics. But Rosenthal's announced ban as reported would appear to extend even to Iranians researching Dutch literature.

Radio Zamaneh, a Farsi language station based in the Netherlands and funded by the Dutch government, reported that it had seen reports on Facebook from Iranians in the Netherlands saying their residency applications had already been turned down.

One Iranian told Radio Zamaneh he had received a letter from a firm with which he had had an employment interview informing him that the Dutch immigration service subsequently visited the firm and said it was forbidden to hire Iranian professionals because of the EU sanctions.

The Iranian ambassador to the Netherlands later criticized the new Dutch ban as irrational and contrary to human rights norms. It does not contradict human rights norms, however, as no country is required to accept any researchers.


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Title Annotation:Diaspora: Around the globe
Publication:Iran Times International (Washington, DC)
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EUNE
Date:Jun 29, 2012
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