Comprehensive law to protect Iranian expats

May 28, 2022 - 17:24

TEHRAN – A comprehensive law is being drafted to protect Iranians living abroad, Fatah Ahmadi, deputy minister of justice for human rights and international affairs, has said.

In order to pave the way for Iranians abroad to invest in their homeland, create sustainable employment, and also to facilitate the movement of Iranians, especially the elites, in order to provide consultations and help the development of the country, it is necessary for them to travel to Iran, he explained.

“We try to address such concerns within the framework of this comprehensive law to provide opportunities for Iranian expats to stay and invest in the country,” he noted, IRIB reported on Saturday.

The administration of President Ebrahim Raisi has placed facilitating the return of Iranians living abroad high on its agenda. Referring to the estimated 4,500 Iranian prisoners abroad, Ahmadi said that “We are trying to transfer them to the country to continue their sentences and remove the burden from the families of these convicts.”

Noting that in many countries where Iranians travel, there are laws that are not clear to our people, he said that “In some countries, such as Armenia, taking some pills such as acetaminophen codeine is prohibited and has severe penalties.”

“We consider it our duty to prepare documentary programs for the people going to these countries in order to prevent the occurrence of these arrests and restrictions.

We are also cooperating with some neighboring countries to deal with drug traffickers,” Ahmadi concluded.

Over 4m Iranians reside abroad

The Secretariat of the High Council of Iranians Abroad announced in its 2020 report that a total of 4,037,258 Iranians reside abroad, 76 percent of whom are resident in the Americas and European countries.

The administration of President Ebrahim Raisi has placed the issue of facilitating the return of Iranians living abroad to their home country high on its agenda, with government officials constantly reiterating the need for paving the way for the expatriates to return. 

About 500 Iranian researchers have returned home over the past four years to transfer their knowledge and expertise to the country's universities, according to the vice presidency for science and technology.

With the support of the National Elites Foundation and Science and Technology Vice Presidency, universities, knowledge enterprises, technology parks, and incubators launched a plan titled ‘cooperation with Iranian expatriate entrepreneurs and elites’ in 2015.

The plan aims to attract Iranians abroad to share knowledge in different forms including postdoctoral research, research opportunity, and visiting fellows, in addition to being faculty members.

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