Premier refuses to meet Iranian former president

March 19, 2009 by J-Wire Staff
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Victoria’s Premier John Brumby has declined an invitation to meet former Iranian president Sayed Mohammed Khatami.

The invitation was issued by Melbourne’s La Trobe University’s Professor Joseph Camilleri, Director of  its Centre for Dialogue. Khatami is scheduled to deliver a public lecture at the university next week.

Last week, the Jewish Community Council of Victoria resigned from the Centre’s Advisory Board on learning that the Centre  was hosting Khatami, a Holocaust denier who is quoted as having said: “We should mobilise the whole Islamic world for a sharp confrontation with the Zionist regime. All of us should mobilise to kill”

Premier Brumby’s spokesperson told media: “Upon further consideration, the Premier does not intend to meet with Mr Khatami.”

President of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria John Searle said he was not surprised by the decision. Although the Council had made representations to Anglican Archbishop Phillip Freier to reconsider hosting Khatami at a function to which the JCCV had declined an invitation, it had not approached the Premier’s Department on the Khatami issue.

The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies CEO told J-Wire he was unaware of a visit to Sydney by Khatami.

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