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March 7, 2013 6:04 pm
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Company Whose Cranes Were Used for Public Hangings Withdraws From Iran

avatar by Zach Pontz

A Palfinger Crane. Photo: Wikipedia

After the revelation that its cranes were being used for executions in Iran, Austrian company Palfinger has communicated to United Against a Nuclear Iran (UANI) that it is no longer doing business in the country.

In fact, the company hadn’t been doing business in Iran for some time. In a letter sent by  Palfinger’s CEO, Herbert Ortner, to UANI in response to its February appeal that the company withdraw from Iran,  Ortner made it clear that Palfinger had made attempts to cut ties with Iran since 2011.

“As a result of the UANI campaign, among other reasons, we have terminated our contract with the Iranian dealer as well as any contact with Iran two years ago,” he wrote. However, Ortner didn’t rule out the possibility that Palfinger products could still turn up in Iran. “Palfinger products are mostly being sold through a network of independent dealers worldwide,” he wrote. “Therefore we cannot exclude that via dealers or via secondary markets in which Palfinger is not active our products are made available to Iran. Furthermore, there are also numerous older Palfinger products in Iran, something we cannot change.”

Ortner also expressed his dismay at learning of the atrocities Iran was committing with his company’s products: “I would hereby like to express that we strictly condemn all behavior by the Iranian regime, which violates human rights — particularly these executions.”

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UANI has made a concerted effort to have crane manufacturers operating in Iran be held responsible for how the Islamic Republic uses their machines.

In response to UANI, prominent crane manufacturers Terex, Liebherr, Tadano, Konecranes, and UNIC have announced the end of their business in Iran.

“We applaud Palfinger for its responsible action, and will now list it as having completely withdrawn from Iran. The Iranian regime is notorious for misusing Western products and technology to brutalize its own people. Conscientious companies should take note of this situation, and swear off all business in Iran,” Nathan Carleton, spokesperson for UANI, told The Algemeiner.

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