Van Bommel welcomes ban on discrimination against Iranian students

6 February 2010

Van Bommel welcomes ban on discrimination against Iranian students

SP Member of Parliament Harry van Bommel describes himself as "delighted" by the court ruling that the Dutch government must cease discriminating against Iranian students. The judgement puts an end to a recently-introduced regulation that bans Iranians from studying nuclear physics as well as from working at nuclear installations.

Harry van BommelThe court in The Hague rejected the regulation in question due to its discriminatory character. The ruling followed a complaint from students of Iranian origin, who sought to have the ban overturned. “It's good that an end has been put to this discrimination against a whole population group," says Van Bommel. "Of course the authorities must take individual screening measures to prevent the Iranian government from conducting espionage in the Netherlands. But there is absolutely no reason to hit out at an entire section of the population."

The government introduced the measure on the basis of a resolution from the UN Security Council, which is concerned to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. But, as Van Bommel points out, "The Netherlands is the only country that reacted to this resolution with so sweeping a measure against Iranians. It's a good thing that it's been thrown out. Let the security services do their legally-sanctioned job and Iranians who have been screened and approved get on with their studies.”

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