See this young lady here gazing at her Apple laptop while sitting on the
stoop in front of her presumed home? Sahar Sabet is a 19-year-old
university student and American citizen of Iranian descent studying in
the University of Georgia. She also happens to own an iPhone so you can
tell she's a big fan of their products.
So imagine her surprise last Thursday when she visited one of the an Apple Store to buy an iPad, only to be denied because she happens to have Iranian relatives.
According to reports, the employee refused to sell an iPad to her and her uncle after overhearing them
speaking Farsi. The iPad was to be a gift for her cousin who lives in
Iran. The employee reportedly said, 'I just can't sell this to you. Our countries have bad relations." And apparently, she's not the only one to have that told that to her face.
A quick look at Apple's policy notes that it does prohibit selling and exporting their product to Iran without authorization by the U.S. government. However, the case has spurred the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to call on Apple to change its policy:
“Apple must revise its policies to ensure that customers do not face discriminatory treatment based on their religion, ethnicity or national origin,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “If the actions of these Apple employees reflected company policy, that policy must be changed and all employees retrained.”
The National Iranian American Council is also asking Apple to review its policies regarding the enforcement of Iran sanctions.