W. Eric MartinUnited States
Sept. 26, 2019 BGG News post, I noted that two Iranian game publishers who were scheduled to be at SPIEL '19 — Reality Game and Dorehami Games — had both been unable to find a German company willing to accept a shipment of their games.
As a result, representatives from those companies had decided to take preorders for whatever people were willing to buy, then pay for extra luggage to get those games into the hands of those curious about their publications.
Turns out that was only the beginning of their troubles.
On Oct. 8, 2019, Sohrab Mostaghim from Reality Game tweeted the following:
For sure I will send a formal letter to the German embassy in Iran.— Sohrab Mostaghim (@Sohrabmostaghim) October 8, 2019
I even have a panel in 3rd day! https://t.co/Pw0e7Qou6X
"What do Iranians like to play, and what social role does the game scene play? By Sohrab Mostaghim @RealityGameme "
Still not enough reasons for my trip?!
He followed up on Oct. 9:
Just now I got a disaster breaking news— Sohrab Mostaghim (@Sohrabmostaghim) October 9, 2019
Not just me, whole Iranian exhibitors who had a booth in #Spiel19 could not get the visa. Just one person from eight persons can come and he is an American citizen. Thank you Germany embassy.@GermAmbTehran https://t.co/LuTcg99ymg
I don't yet know whether Dorehami Games is in this same situation, but Amir Salamati from Roomiz Games wrote to me on October 9 to cancel the interview that we had scheduled at SPIEL '19: "I just want to inform that my visa for Germany has been rejected. Apparently German embassy believes that I will leave my wife, my family, my house and my business here and try to stay in Germany after Spiel !!"
I love board games because they bring people to the table for a common purpose, whatever their backgrounds. I'm sorry this won't be possible at SPIEL '19 unless (as I understand it) Auswärtiges Amt, Germany's Foreign Federal Office, changes its mind in the next week...
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