[Owasp-board] Funding and Iran follow up

johanna curiel curiel johanna.curiel at owasp.org
Wed Aug 24 14:04:28 UTC 2016

Board members,

The following issues was mentioned during the board meeting yesterday:

"Projects, Funding and Iran - Matt Tesauro & Claudia Casanovas

We have several projects with leaders or co-leaders located in Iran. This
makes funding those projects problematic due to the OWASP Foundation being
a US charity and the economic sanctions imposed by the US. For background,
see the US Dept of State Iran Sanction site
<http://www.state.gov/e/eb/tfs/spi/iran/index.htm>. Details of the projects
in question are in the Projects Report for this month, slide 5
S*ince any funding of activities in Iran represents a risk to the
Foundation, the staff is asking for the board to determine how the
Foundation will interact with any community members or project leaders
which are located in Iran*"


Now that this issue has been raised after some many years having a Project
Leader from Iran (Abbas Naderi) and even a project leader that was
considered to be part of the board and was a board candidate, I'm
requesting a clarification and solution, meaning that once you have raised
this subject , the situation should be clarified asap.

I did consult a lawyer but he mentioned that in this case, being OWASP a US
non-profit foundation, to consult a lawyer knowledgeable in these matters,
not just any lawyer.

So far, none of the Iranian leaders have received any goods or financial
support from OWASP. There is no commercial exchange between Iranian leaders
and OWASP, however, the restrictions go so far including exchange of
services or goods, or any kind of financial support, such as , sponsoring.
In this case, many of the support/services provided by OWASP, could be seen
as an exchange of services.

I'm not a lawyer and since we are talking about a very specific situation,
OWASP needs to define this situation asap because the consequences for
OWASP can be quite big.

*One of the project that I co-lead, is technically nor can be considered a
'Iranian' project, so please let's not call it that way. The Projects are
not from Iran, the projects are open source, anyone can reach them and they
are co-lead/lead by some one from Iran.So please, correct this naming that
bring confusion and the wrong tone to this issue.*

Given this situation, it is clear that OWASP requires the advice of a
knowledgeable lawyer specialised in these cases, considering also that some
of the sanctions have been lifted and what that means for OWASP if provides
support of goods or services.

Please let us know asap, the next steps. I hope there is some actions after
this issue has been raised, so Ali and Reza , including me know what to


Johanna Curiel
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