Ytzhak | 04.08.2003 03:56
protest the shooting death of an Iranian teenager in a Vancouver suburb,
while the youth's father threatened to sue the police officer who pulled
Gilles Poirier was summoned to Iran's Foreign Ministry to discuss the
July 14 shooting of 18-year-old Iranian Keyvan Tabesh by a plainclothes
officer in the Vancouver suburb of Port Moody, a diplomat said on
condition of anonymity. He did not elaborate. Tabesh's killing worsened
relations between Canada and Iran, which had already been soured with
July 10 death of Canadian journalist Zahra Kazemi while in police
custody in Tehran. She died in hospital after being arrested
photographing anti-government protests. Iran's government has admitted
she was fatally beaten.
On Friday, Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi demanded a thorough
investigation into Tabesh's death and accused Canadian police of
Foreign Affairs Minister Bill Graham responded to Kharrazi's remarks by
sending a diplomatic note to the Iranian Embassy outlining the "open and
transparent" way Canadian investigations are conducted and urging the
same treatment from the Iranian government.
Police said Tabesh of Burnaby, B.C., was waving a machete and running
toward a police officer, who then shot him. Tabesh was an Iranian
citizen who had been living in Canada for about two years.
Meanwhile, in New York, the teen's father told the Islamic Republic News
Agency (IRNA) that he plans to sue the officer who allegedly shot his
son during an altercation with three Iranian nationals.
Dr. Nasser Tabesh said police had no right to shoot at young people
without exercising caution.
"My son was on his way to bring two of his friends to their homes when
he was shot in the heart by a person who did not even resemble a
policeman and who did not even address him before shooting," Tabesh said
of the plainclothes officer.
He also dismissed police statements that the teen had been shot in
"My son was absolutely innocent," Tabesh said.
Kazemi, 54, was buried in her birthplace, the southern Iranian city of
Shiraz, on Wednesday against the wishes of Canadian authorities and her
son, who lives in Montreal. Canada subsequently withdrew its ambassador
to Tehran to protest Iran's handling of the case.
An official at the Tehran prosecutor's office said Friday that a veteran
judge has been appointed to launch an independent inquiry into her
Homepage: http:// http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/World/2003/07/24/144485-cp.html