Sanctuary: of Pain and Hope

Posted by admin on Aug 26th, 2006


Join us on Saturday August 26th @ 6 PM at St. Michael’s Anglican Church (409 East Broadway- just east of Main) for a night of dinner, music, poetry, films, and presentations to honour the two-year struggle of Amir Kazemian in sanctuary. Suggested donation $5-20 and all proceeds go to Amir.

Amir Kazemian has been seeking sanctuary in St Michaels Church in Vancouver since June 2004. Amir is a survivor of torture who came to Canada and filed a refugee claim in 1997. Amir fears for his life from the Iranian authorities due to his and his father’s political activities for human rights; for which they both faced imprisonment and torture.

Amir’s mother also came to Canada and filed a refugee claim based on the same set of facts as Amir.  In a manner that reveals the arbitrariness of the refugee determination system, Amir’s mother has been allowed to stay on the basis of the persecution her husband and son faced, while Amir has been forced into sanctuary in order to protect his life.

Amir and his family are not just a case number or file number. His life is in jeopardy. He has been in sanctuary for over two years in conditions that few of us imagine, let alone bear. Amir’s decision to publicly seek sanctuary has touched and inspired hundreds of supporters. Join us on Saturday August 26th to celebrate the courage of Amir and to demonstrate our ongoing support for him, while enjoying good food and music.

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