ITALY ACCUSES IRAN FINANCING RIGHT WING AND ANTI JEWS CAMPAIGN

BY AHMAD RA’FAT

ROME 8 Nov. (IPS) Sectors of the Iranian clerical rulers are accused by the Italian press to back right wing extremists and anti-Jewish organisations.

Following a flurry of articles published in the press expressing concern about Iranian support for Italian neo-fascist and neo-nazi groups, Signor Marco Taradash, a member of the Liberal fraction of the Italian National Assembly urged the government to explain the situation.

Speaking to Iran Press Service, Mr. Tardash said as far as he is aware and articles published in Italian influential newspapers such as "Corriere Della Sera" have confirmed, Iranian elements covered by diplomatic immunity provides financial support to the Italian right wing extremist groups to promote anti-Jewish campaign.

According to the reformist MP, the Italian neo-nazi organisations are very active in provinces of Lombardia in the north and Campagna, in the south and are in direct contact with "certain elements" in the Iranian Embassy in Rome and the Iranian Consulate in Milano.

"My questioning the government was to shed light on this otherwise disturbing issue and in that respect I urged ministers of Foreign Affaires and Interior to communicate to the Parliament, particularly to the Anti-Terrorism Commission their information in which I’m also a member", Mr. Taradash pointed out.

He said in case the information are correct and the accusation of the (Italian) press against Mr. Khatami’s diplomats are justified, then our government must immediately take action against Iran by expelling the rogue elements who hides behind diplomatic cover.

Italian newspaper gives Signor Luigi De Martino, an outspoken neo-nazi who converted to Shi’a, the Muslim sect that dominates in Iran and Iraq two years ago, and publishes the "Puro Islam" magazine in Napoli, as the "mastermind" behind the recent wave of anti-Jewish campaign in Italy)

A frequent visitor to the Iran, De Martino has close working contacts with the Haqqani school in the religious city of Qom. It is reported that he send his followers to that theological centre that is known for its hard line interpretation of Islam as well as for some of the ultra-orthodox ayatollahs who graduated from this School or teach there. One of De martino’s daughters had married an Iranian while his sun is spending most of his time in the Iranian Capital.

"Avanguardia", the official organ of "Avanguardia Nazionale", an outlawed neo-nazi group, in its last issue, printed the full text of Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s testament in Italian, marking the tenth anniversary of his death.

The magazine, deploying a picture of Adolph Hitler for its cover, is publishing several anti-Jewish and revisionist articles

Professor Stefano Allievi, a prominent researcher on Islam and its development who has published several books on the subject is of the opinion that Italian Muslim groups and organisation are not capable of mounting terrorist operations.

"The maximum these Italian Muslim groups could do is to propagate anti-Jewish propaganda on behalf of the Islamic movements in some Muslim countries that finance them", Professor Allievi observed.

In his view, while countries like Iran or Saudi Arabia do not need Italian Muslim groups, on the other side, these newly turned Muslims would need backing from Muslim nations.

The presence of Iranian diplomats, particularly Hojjatoleslam Abd Khoda’I, the former Iranian ambassador to Vatican in meetings organised by "Puro Islam" led Italian officials to bring discuss the issue with their Iranian counterparts at official functions.

"But every time, Iran says, indirectly though, it would stop backing the neo-nazi and neo-fascist groups after Italy forbid activities of the Mujahedeen Khalq Organisation", says an Italian diplomat. END IRAN ITALY 81100.