Iran\'s Jewish MP Condemns Discrimination in Education, State Jobs

Published December 24th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Iran's lone Jewish MP lashed out Sunday at what he said was systematic discrimination that blocks Jews from taking advanced university degrees or moving up the ranks in the Iranian government. 

"I hope the difficulties facing Iran's small Jewish community, and perhaps other religious minorities as well, will be resolved with the wisdom and good will of the authorities," Maurice Motamed said. 

In an address to parliament carried live by state radio, he said Jewish students were "blocked from going on to advanced university study" and also could not get important posts in the nation's enormous public sector. 

"I must add that in certain cases our youth are the victims of discrimination from the moment they get a job with the state or in non-governmental organizations," he said. 

"The exclusion of our university-educated young people from key official posts in the state administration goes against the noble goals of the Islamic revolution," Motamed said. 

Motamed said the discrimination was causing young Jews to leave Iran, where the Jewish community numbers roughly 25,000 people. 

Jews were pushed out of government jobs after the 1979 revolution, particularly during the 1980-1988 war with neighboring Iraq. 

Since then, the nation's Jews have complained especially about restrictions on their freedom to travel outside the country. 

Motamed was elected in February to the one seat in the 290-member parliament set aside for the Jewish community -- TEHRAN (AFP)  




© 2000 Al Bawaba (

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