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  • Masoud Dalvand 11:07 am on August 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Paris Conference   

    Paris Conference calls to investigate #1988Massacre in #Iran 

    iranarabspring

    Call for an international commission of inquiry to investigate 1988 massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in Iran Human rights, in particular, bringing to justice the officials involved in the 1988 massacre, should be at the core of Iran policy

    Human rights defenders, dignitaries, European politicians and the Iranian Resistance called for the formation of an international commission of inquiry into the massacre of political prisoners in Iran in the summer of 1988 and bringing those responsible for this genocide and crime against humanity to justice.

    They stressed that the issue of human rights should be at the core of the West’s policy on Iran. They urged the UN, EU and the US to put the issue of flagrant and systematic violation of human rights in Iran on top of their agenda.

    The call was made during an exhibition on the 1988 massacre that took place upon the initiative of Mr. Jean-François…

    View original post 906 more words

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 6:51 am on August 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Iran Vilifies Human Rights Defenders as ‘Enemies of the State’ 

    by Siavosh Hosseini 

    The Iranian regime has increasingly focused on clamping down on anyone who speaks out against the human rights abuses of its ruling class. One of the key areas where this is demonstrated is in the trials of these individuals. Many lack basic legal representation, and the proceedings are brief. If they do have legal representation, there are often hurdles for them to meet with their lawyers and having access to court files delayed.

    Human rights lawyers who speak out against torture and unfair trials have also faced harassment, disbarment, and imprisonment. Trials of human rights defenders generally take place in a climate of fear.

    Amnesty International recently launched a global campaign ‘Brave’, calling for an end to attacks against those defending human rights worldwide.

    “It is a bitter irony that as the Iranian authorities boast about their increased engagement with the UN and the EU, particularly in the aftermath of the nuclear deal, human rights defenders who have made contact with these same institutions are being treated as criminals,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for the Middle East and North Africa.

    “Rather than propagating the dangerous myth that human rights defenders pose a threat to national security, the Iranian authorities should focus on addressing the legitimate concerns they raise. These are people who have risked everything to build a more humane and just society – it is appalling that they are so viciously punished for their bravery.”

    Amnesty International, who released a new report entitled ‘Caught in a web of repression: Iran’s human rights defenders under attack’, is calling on the EU to speak out in the strongest terms against the persecution of human rights defenders in the country.

    “The international community, and in particular the EU, must not stay silent over the outrageous treatment of human rights defenders in Iran,” said Luther. “Instead of appeasing Iranian officials, the EU should forcefully call for the immediate and unconditional release of all those jailed for their peaceful human rights activism and for an end to the misuse of the justice system to silence activists.”

    This recent report detailed the crackdown on human rights defenders in a variety of key areas, including the death penalty, women’s rights, and trade unionists, just to name a few.

    Over the past four years, Iran’s judiciary have dropped the threshold for invoking the vague national security-related charges, while increasing the length of prison sentences for these individuals. Many of their crimes include contacting the UN and the EU, as well as international agencies focused on human rights.

    via  Iran Vilifies Human Rights Defenders as ‘Enemies of the State’ — The Media Express

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 10:35 am on August 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    A letter by political prisoner Maryam Akbari Monfared, from Evin Prison 

    A letter by political prisoner Maryam Akbari Monfared, from Evin Prison

    Sufferings of mothers of PMOI martyrs

    In the name of God, in the name of freedom, knowledge and justice

    We have already spoken of the magnificent stories of those fallen for freedom. We have written many poems and songs about the most splendid epics created in the Iranian people’s quest for freedom.

    Our hearts are filled with love and faith when we hail the lofty souls of those heroes in chains and those who sealed their honesty and loyalty with ultimate sacrifice.

    I am writing for the mothers and fathers whose strength and resistance make mountains humble. I am writing to pay tribute to their humane interpretation of the word, “mother”, and to thank their abundant love which never dies down and their endurance that passes like a breeze through the stormy sky.

    I turn the pages of my memoirs, to reach the page where I first found your familiar gaze. I could see the glad tidings of life in your kind eyes as if a dandelion was passing through the experience of life with a cry for justice.

    In the noisy days when the POWs were returning home, we had decorated our neighbourhood with strings of light to celebrate the return of Reza, our next door neighbour, Mrs. Zahra’s son.

    On that same day, my mother had gone to Behesht-e Zahra (cemetery). She returned home at around noon. I remember the exact moment. My mother hugged Reza, squeezed him hard and kissed him on the cheeks, as if she was kissing her beloved son, Abdolreza, who had been executed earlier. All day long, you were deep in your own thoughts, and your eyes bespoke of the lashes of injustice.

    My eyes followed you, step by step, cuddling your tall figure. You had been through so many twists and turns, so many ups and downs, you had witnessed so much atrocity, so much injustice, and you were still standing tall.

    I can remember your words on that day. “I wish I could also celebrate the return of my loved ones; although I didn’t see even their corpses, nor did I have the permission to mourn them.”

    NCRI Women fb

    Yes, in the days when people were tossing flower petals in the streets of Iran and decorating all neighborhoods with string lights for the return of POWs, and everyone was engulfed in joy and happiness, there were also some mothers who were mourning their children and their beloved young men and women who had been executed. No one knew what was going on in the hearts of those mothers.

    The lullabies of these mothers became an anthem for freedom so that the Divine rule of God would shine on the Earth and give meaning to the world with His love and mercy.

    The children of these dear mothers and fathers who were sacrificed on the altar, turned into inspirations and symbols of sacrifice, steadfastness and courage.

    fb Marc Nelson

    My parents were only an example of many other parents who had been born human in the darkness of a land where their ancestors had been unjustly hanged by the rope of the scale of justice; they were the ones who ran like blood in the veins of the history of our homeland.

    These were the fathers and mothers who wrote the pages of victory in their own time in the silence of an everlasting love.

    Mother is the symbol of love, sacrifice and selflessness. There were mothers who sacrificed their loved ones but their love and kindness became ubiquitous, a love that could not be written on the paper.

    I would like to remember mothers who stood tall as a loud cry against everything that sought to enchain them; they wiped the dust away from their faces to identify the executioners who killed their children. The executioners could not ever conceive of such steadfastness and endurance. These mothers stood firm to expose the oppression of the mullahs’ rule all over the world and attest to the undoubtable truth.

    1. Mother Mossanna (Ferdows Mohebbat): Her three sons, Morteza, Ali and Mostafa, as well as her daughter-in-law, Nahid Rahmani, and her brother, Nasser Rahmani were executed in the 1980s. Nahid and Nasser’s bodies were thrown into Qom’s Lake because the executioners had to get rid of the large number of corpses before the visit by an ICRC delegation at the time. Mother Mossanna was in prison when she heard about the execution of her three sons. Despite the great pain and suffering, she remained proud and stood tall in the history of our country.
    2. Mother Effat Shabestari: She became paralyzed in prison due to Rheumatoid fever. Her daughters, Raf’at and Soghra Kholday, had been executed. Her son, Qassem, who had been arrested in 1980, was hanged eight years later. When she was taken to see the corpse of her son, she turned her head away and said, “I will not take back the gift I have given in the path of God…”
    3. Mother Jahan Ara: She is known in Iran as the mother of three martyrs. Her fourth martyr, Hassan Jahan Ara, has not been mentioned anywhere. Hassan was a member of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, who was among those massacred in 1988. This mother was not allowed to say anything, anywhere, about Hassan. She had sacrificed her children for Iran’s freedom but had to remain silent and lonely to mourn for Hassan. Yet, it is her silence that is more telling than any other eloquent speech.
    4. Mother Vadood: Vadood had been martyred before the 1980s. She had looked for him everywhere. Once, she was looking for her son in a morgue, when she recognized him by his feet. She started crying out, pushing Vadood’s cold feet to her chest. When she returned to her prison cell, she told her cellmates, “I put his ice-cold feet on my heart and warmed them up.”

    This is the story of how we were united as humans to watch the rainbow in spring, to feel the pride of mountains and the glory of the sea.

    In those years, when our mothers were suffering in agony, their eyes were filled with kindness and their silence was a cry which called on the world for solidarity.

    Since then until now, I have been turning the pages of my memoirs in anticipation of this moment when the truth of the resistance of these mothers and fathers is narrated, those who did not fear the cold and dark days of oppression, and their strength overwhelms us.

    They were the ones who continued the movement for freedom and equality in Iran. They have been the hope of our nation. The philosophy of their lives and deaths, gave meaning to Iran’s history. They became beacons who show the way towards freedom and a principled life.

    Your cries will not go unanswered. Our call for justice today, is the answer to your cries. There will come a day when we can feel the warmth of the sun of love, hope and justice; a day when prison, torture, and execution will become a fable and a day when Iran will feel your presence.

    Maryam Akbari Monfared – Evin – August 2017

    Source: National Council of Resistance of Iran – Women’s Committee website:

    http://women.ncr-iran.org/articles/4181-sufferings-of-mothers-of-pmoi-martyrs

    via #Iran: A letter by political prisoner Maryam Akbari Monfared, from Evin Prison — iranarabspring

     
    • bluemoone 5:47 am on August 12, 2017 Permalink

      These stories are so sad they rip the heart right out of you. To be imprisoned and separated by those you love simply for voicing an opinion because you wanted to make a better world for them. Torturous.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Masoud Dalvand 6:18 am on August 12, 2017 Permalink

      Yes, you’re right Danielle, unfortunately these stories there are a lot in Iran, especially you know Mullahs are misogyny, therefore, repression and torture in relation to women in Iran are more intense. Thanks for comments and thank you very much for your great and humanitarian feelings.

      Like

  • Masoud Dalvand 8:43 pm on August 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    A Look at Khomeini’s Fatwa for PMOI/MEK Massacre video & photos 

    Justice for Victims of Irans 1988 Massacre Demanded At Free Iran Rally

    Justice for Victims of Irans 1988 Massacre Demanded At Free Iran Rally

    By Jubin Katiraie

    IRAN FOCUS, 08 August 2017— 29 years ago these days, in Iran under the mullahs’ regime, the massacre of over 30,000 political prisoners, mainly members, and supporters of the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) had engulfed all of Iran.

    Khomeini

    Khomeini’‘Death Decree’ for mass executions of Iranian political prisoners in 1988.
     
    The intensity and speed of this massacre were so severe that not only PMOI/MEK families, but all other families of prisoners sought information about their loved ones. No authorities would provide answers, however.
    The international community had turned its back on this horrible genocide, all under the pretext of Iranian regime founder Ruhollah Khomeini signing United Nations Security Council Resolution 598 ending the Iran-Iraq War. This signing was the result of Khomeini becoming terrified of his regime being toppled by the PMOI/MEK.
    Both Iran and Iraq had accepted Resolution 598 on 20 July 1988
        Both Iran and Iraq had accepted Resolution 598 on 20 July 1988
    Initially, groups opposing the PMOI/MEK, followed by the mullahs’ regime, portrayed these executions as the mullahs’ response to a massive combat operation staged by the National Liberation Army of Iran and the PMOI/MEK in the final days of July of that year.
    However, these claims were discredited shortly and other sources indicated that the massacre was carried out based on Khomeini’s inhumane and anti-Islamic fatwa against the PMOI/MEK issued far before. Khomeini and his regime have to this day considered the PMOI/MEK as the sole serious threat that remains steadfast on its non-negotiable position of “overthrowing” this regime.
     The 1988 massacre that continues to haunt Tehran
    The 1988 massacre that continues to haunt Tehran
    In a recent interview with state-TV Aparat, former Iranian intelligence minister Ali Fallahian said the order to massacre PMOI/MEK inmates in 1988 was issued previously by Khomeini.
    “In relations to the PMOI/MEK, and all groups considered ‘mohareb’ (enemy of God), their rulings are execution. He emphasized in saying don’t hesitate in this regard… they have always been sentenced to execution, before or after 1988,” he said. Based on this fatwa, over 30,000 political prisoners were hanged in less than three months.
    Last year in the PMOI/MEK convention in Paris the Iranian Resistance President-elect Maryam Rajavi launched a justice movement seeking accountability for those involved in the 1988 massacre of PMOI/MEK inmates and other political prisoners. This movement expanded throughout Iran at a rapid pace, caused major troubles for the Iranian regime and been welcomed across the globe. This movement is demanding that senior Iranian regime officials be brought to justice for their PMOI/MEK genocide.

     Justice for Victims of Iran
    Justice for Victims of Iran’s 1988 Massacre Demanded At ‘Free Iran’ Rally
    The PMOI/MEK genocide by the regime ruling Iran is the most important dossier challenging this regime after Tehran’s nuclear program controversy. This dossier has such deep roots in Iran’s society and enjoys the enormous global support that it prevented Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei from engineering the May presidential elections. He intended to have conservative cleric Ebrahim Raisi replace the incumbent Hassan Rouhani as president.
    Raisi was a member of the notorious “Death Commission” involved in the PMOI/MEK genocide back in 1988. The PMOI/MEK justice movement and revelations by the PMOI/MEK regarding Raisi’s candidacy – blessed by Khamenei – shocked the very pillars of the mullahs’ regime.
    Iranian youths across the country, previously unaware of such crimes by the mullahs’ regime, are now in defense of the PMOI/MEK demanding the mullahs admit to their crimes against humanity. This has led the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to refer to the 1988 massacre of PMOI/MEK members and supports in this year’s annual report.
    From the very days when reports of this massacre leaked outside of Iran’s prisons, the PMOI/MEK placed a massive global effort to unveil these crimes. They published the names of a number of massacred PMOI/MEK members, along with their graves and information about members of the Death Commission in various provinces. Human rights organizations and other such bodies were provided with this data.
    Marking the anniversary of this justice movement, new measures are necessary to realize the goals set for this initiative:
    1) Inside Iran, gathering new information about massacred PMOI/MEK members, their burial sites, identifying the perpetrators and officials behind these crimes and…
    2) Abroad, further condemning the massacre of PMOI/MEK members by parliaments, political parties, human rights advocates, religious leaders and political figures to hinge political and economic relations with Iran on ending all executions and torture, launching an independent commission to investigate into the massacre of PMOI/MEK members and supporters in 1988 to have senior regime officials brought to justice for crimes against humanity and …
    Now is the time for the international community to open its eyes to the flagrant human rights violations, and specifically the massacre of PMOI/MEK members and supporters in 1988, and not permit this dossier to remain closed as it has for years.
    There is no doubt that that the solution for Middle East crises, now affecting all other countries, is through regime change in Iran. Realizing such an objective needs all of this regime’s senior figures to be tried for human rights violations and massacring PMOI members and supporters in 1988.
    This should be followed by the official recognition of the democratic alternative, the National Council of Resistance of Iran. The PMOI/MEK is the pivotal force of this coalition.
    This reminds us of how US President Donald Trump said the Iranian people are the main victims of the regime ruling Iran.

     

    *Some important issues about MEK:

    A Long Conflict between the Clerical Regime and the MEK

    The origins of the MEK date back to before the 1979 Iranian Revolution., the MEK helped to overthrow the dictatorship of Shah Reza Pahlavi, but it quickly became a bitter enemy of the emerging the religious fascism under the pretext of Islamic Republic. To this day, the MEK and NCRI describe Ruhollah Khomenei and his associates as having co-opted a popular revolution in order to empower themselves while imposing a fundamentalist view of Islam onto the people of Iran.
    Under the Islamic Republic, the MEK was quickly marginalized and affiliation with it was criminalized. Much of the organization’s leadership went to neighboring Iraq and built an exile community called Camp Ashraf, from which the MEK organized activities aimed at ousting the clerical regime and bringing the Iranian Revolution back in line with its pro-democratic origins. But the persistence of these efforts also prompted the struggling regime to crack down on extreme violence on the MEK and other opponents of theocratic rule.
    The crackdowns culminated in the massacre of political prisoners in the summer of 1988, as the Iran-Iraq War was coming to a close. Thousands of political prisoners were held in Iranian jails at that time, many of them having already served out their assigned prison sentences. And with the MEK already serving as the main voice of opposition to the regime at that time, its members and supporters naturally made up the vast majority of the population of such prisoners.
    As the result of a fatwa handed down by Khomeini, the regime convened what came to be known as the Death Commission, assigning three judges the task of briefly interviewing prisoners to determine whether they retained any sympathy for the MEK or harbored any resentment toward the existing government. Those who were deemed to have shown any sign of continued opposition were sentenced to be hanged. After a period of about three months, an estimated 30,000 people had been put to death. Many other killings of MEK members preceded and followed that incident so that today the Free Iran rally includes an annual memorial for approximately 120,000 martyrs from the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran.
     A site of a mass grave for some of the victims of the 1988 massacre of political prisoners in Iran
     A site of a mass grave for some of the victims of the 1988 massacre of political prisoners in Iran
    The obvious motive behind the 1988 massacre and other such killings was the destruction of the MEK. And yet it has not only survived but thrived, gaining allies to form the NCRI and acquiring the widespread support that is put on display at each year’s Free Iran rally. In the previous events, the keynote speech was delivered by Maryam Rajavi, who has been known to receive several minutes of applause from the massive crowd as she takes the stage. Her speeches provide concrete examples of the vulnerability of the clerical regime and emphasize the ever-improving prospects for the MEK to lead the way in bringing about regime change.
    The recipients of that message are diverse and they include more than just the assembled crowd of MEK members and supporters. The expectation is that the international dignitaries at each year’s event will carry the message of the MEK back to their own governments and help to encourage more policymakers to recognize the role of the Iranian Resistance in the potential creation of a free and democratic Iranian nation. It is also expected that the event will inspire millions of Iranians to plan for the eventual removal of the clerical regime. And indeed, the MEK broadcasts the event via its own satellite television network, to millions of Iranian households with illegal hookups.
      A Secret documents smuggled out of Iran, over 30,000 political prisoners as young as 13 were hanged from cranes or shot to death in groups of five or six at a time.
    A Secret document smuggled out of Iran, over 30,000 political prisoners as young as 13 were hanged from cranes or shot to death in groups of five or six at a time.
     

    MEK’s Domestic Activism and Intelligence Network

     What’s more, the MEK retains a solid base of activists inside its Iranian homeland. In the run-up to this year’s Free Iran rally, the role of those activists was particularly evident, since the event comes just a month and a half after the latest Iranian presidential elections, in which heavily stage-managed elections resulted in the supposedly moderate incumbent Hassan Rouhani securing reelection. His initial election in 2013 was embraced by some Western policymakers as a possible sign of progress inside the Islamic Republic, but aside from the 2015 nuclear agreement with six world powers, none of his progressive-sounding campaign promises have seen the light of day.
    Rouhani’s poor record has provided additional fertile ground for the message of the MEK and Maryam Rajavi. The Iranian Resistance has long argued that change from within the regime is impossible, and this was strongly reiterated against the backdrop of the presidential elections when MEK activists used graffiti, banners, and other communications to describe the sitting president as an “imposter.” Many of those same communications decried Rouhani’s leading challenger, Ebrahim Raisi, as a “murderer,” owing to his leading role in the massacre of MEK supporters in 1988.
    Members of the death commission
     Members of the death commission
    That fact helped to underscore the domestic support for the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, insofar as many people who participated in the election said they recognized Raisi as the worst the regime had to offer, and that they were eager to prevent him from taking office. But this is not to say that voters saw Rouhani in a positive light, especially where the MEK is concerned. Under the Rouhani administration, the Justice Minister is headed by Mostafa Pourmohammadi, who also served on the Death Commission and declared as recently as last year that he was proud of himself for having carried out what he described as God’s command of death for MEK supporters.
    With this and other aspects of the Islamic Republic’s record, the MEK’s pre-election activism was mainly focused on encouraging Iranians to boycott the polls. The publicly displayed banners and posters urged a “vote for regime change,” and many of them included the likeness of Maryam Rajavi, suggesting that her return to Iran from France would signify a meaningful alternative to the hardline servants of the clerical regime who are currently the only option in any Iranian national election.
    Naturally, this direct impact on Iranian politics is the ultimate goal of MEK activism. But it performs other recognizable roles from its position in exile, not just limited to the motivational and organization role of the Free Iran rally and other, smaller gatherings. In fact, the MEK rose to particular international prominence in 2005 when it released information that had been kept secret by the Iranian regime about its nuclear program. These revelations included the locations of two secret nuclear sites: a uranium enrichment facility at Natanz and a heavy water plant at Arak, capable of producing enriched plutonium.
    As well as having a substantial impact on the status of international policy regarding the Iranian nuclear program, the revelations also highlighted the MEK’s popular support and strong network inside Iran. Although Maryam Rajavi and the rest of the leadership of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran reside outside of the country, MEK affiliates are scattered throughout Iranian society with some even holding positions within hardline government and military institutions, including the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps.
    Drawing upon the resources of that intelligence network, the MEK has continued to share crucial information with Western governments in recent years, some of it related to the nuclear program and some of it related to other matters including terrorist training, military development, and the misappropriation of financial resources. The MEK has variously pointed out that the Revolutionary Guard controls well over half of Iran’s gross domestic product, both directly and through a series of front companies and close affiliates in all manner of Iranian industries.
    In February of this year, the Washington, D.C. office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran held press conferences to detail MEK intelligence regarding the expansion of terrorist training programs being carried out across Iran by the Revolutionary Guards. The growth of these programs reportedly followed upon direct orders from Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and coincided with increased recruitment of foreign nationals to fight on Tehran’s behalf in regional conflicts including the Syrian and Yemeni civil wars.
    In the weeks following that press conference, the MEK’s parent organization also prepared documents and held other talks explaining the source of some of the Revolutionary Guards’ power and wealth. Notably, this series of revelations reflected upon trends in American policy toward the Islamic Republic of Iran. And other revelations continue to do so, even now.
    MEK Intelligence Bolstering US Policy Shifts
    Soon after taking office, and around the time the MEK identified a series of Revolutionary Guard training camps, US President Donald Trump directed the State Department to review the possibility of designating Iran’s hardline paramilitary as a foreign terrorist organization. Doing so would open the Revolutionary Guards up to dramatically increased sanctions – a strategy that the MEK prominently supports as a means of weakening the barriers to regime change within Iran.
     The tape-recording of Hossein-Ali Montazeri, Ruhollah Khomeini
    The tape-recording of Hossein-Ali Montazeri, Ruhollah Khomeini’s would-be successor, describing his objections to the systematic massacre of 30,000 political prisoners
    The recent revelations of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran have gone a long way toward illustrating both the reasons for giving this designation to the Revolutionary Guards and the potential impact of doing so. Since then, the MEK has also used its intelligence gathering to highlight the ways in which further sanctioning the Guards could result in improved regional security, regardless of the specific impact on terrorist financing.
    For example, in June the NCRI’s Washington, D.C. office held yet another press conference wherein it explained that MEK operatives had become aware of another order for escalation that had been given by Supreme Leader Khamenei, this one related to the Iranian ballistic missile program. This had also been a longstanding point of contention for the Trump administration and the rest of the US government, in light of several ballistic missile launches that have been carried out since the conclusion of nuclear negotiations, including an actual strike on eastern Syria.
    That strike was widely viewed as a threatening gesture toward the US. And the MEK has helped to clarify the extent of the threat by identifying 42 separate missile sites scattered throughout Iran, including one that was working closely with the Iranian institution that had previously been tasked with weaponizing aspects of the Iranian nuclear program.
    The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) led by Maryam Rajavi is thus going to great lengths to encourage the current trend in US policy, which is pointing to more assertiveness and possibly even to the ultimate goal of regime change. The MEK is also striving to move Europe in a similar direction, and the July 1 gathering is likely to show further progress toward that goal. This is because hundreds of American and European politicians and scholars have already declared support for the NCRI and MEK and the platform of Maryam Rajavi. The number grows every year, while the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran continues to collect intelligence that promises to clarify the need for regime change and the practicality of their strategy for achieving it.

    Source: A Look at Khomeini’s Fatwa for PMOI/MEK Massacre video & photos

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 10:49 am on August 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Political prisoner, Maryam Akbari Monfared, seeks justice over Iran’s 1988 Massacre 

    In October 2016, Iranian political prisoner Maryam Akbari Monfared took the unprecedented bold move of filing an official complaint with the Prosecutor General of Tehran over the arbitrary execution of her brother and sister during the 1988 massacre of political prisoners in Iran. She did so on 15 October 2016 from the Women’s Ward of Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison.

    مريم اكبري منفرد

    Ms. Akbari Monfared’s 15 October 2016 complaint read in part: “My brother Abdolreza and my sister Roqieh were executed on an unknown date during the summer of 1988. They were both tried by the Revolutionary Court and sentenced to prison terms. They were deprived of their right to have a lawyer to represent them. Abdolreza was arrested when he was only 17 for selling Mojahed publication (affiliated to the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran – PMOI or MEK). He was sentenced to three years imprisonment in 1980, but the authorities refused to release him after he completed his prison term until he was finally executed in 1988.

    Just a day later, on 16 October 2016, Ms. Akbari-Monfared published an open letter stating her demands in her quest to obtain justice for her loved ones who perished during the 1988 massacre.

    On 30 October 2016, Ms. Akbari-Monfared filed a follow up complaint with the Judiciary demanding an investigation to discover the identities of the perpetrators of the 1988 massacre.

     On 3 November 2016, a group of political prisoners in Gohardasht (Rajai-Shahr) Prison in Karaj issued a statement in support of Ms. Akbari-Monfared.

    Also on 3 November 2016, Amnesty International issued an Urgent Action appeal stating that prisoner of conscience Maryam Akbari Monfared, who is serving a 15-year sentence in Tehran’s Evin Prison, is being denied access to medical treatment and is facing reprisals after filing a formal complaint that seeks an official investigation into the mass killings of political prisoners, including her siblings, in the summer of 1988.

    On 10 November 2016, Sara Jafari-Hatam, the daughter of Maryam Akbari-Monfared, wrote to the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Iran Ms. Asma Jahangir over the plight of her imprisoned mother.

    Ms. Akbari-Monfared’s case continues to draw domestic and international attention.

    Source: Justice for Victims of 1988 Massacre in Iran (JVMI) website 

    via Political prisoner, Maryam Akbari Monfared, seeks justice over #Iran’s #1988Massacre — iranarabspring

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 9:13 pm on August 6, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    What is the status of political prisoner, Atena Daemi? 

    Demand for Immediate & Unconditional Release of Atena Daemi, an Iranian Childrens Rights Activist Petition

    Demand for Immediate & Unconditional Release of Atena Daemi, an Iranian Childrens Rights Activist Petition

    IRAN, 06 August 2017— The political prisoner, Atena Daemi, who has been serving time in Evin Prison, was newly framed by the warden and the head of the infirmary as ‘breaching the peace of prison’ with her hunger strike.
    Prison term for Atena Daemi, anti-death penalty activist!
    Prison term  for Atena Daemi, anti-death penalty activist!
    On Monday, July 26, the human rights activist, Atena Daemi was transferred to Branch 4 of Evin’s court from the women’s ward.
    The interrogator informed Atena Daemi that the prison’s authorities have newly filed a complaint against her. Atena Daemi was briefed by the alleged crimes of ‘breaching the peace of prison” and ‘insulting the prison guards.’
    Demand for Immediate & Unconditional Release of Atena Daemi, an Iranian Children
    Demand for Immediate & Unconditional Release of Atena Daemi, an Iranian Children’s Rights Activist Petition
    The head of Evin’s infirmary was introduced as one of the plaintiffs in Atena Daemi’s case. This healthcare official expressed concern since the media had earlier reflected his attitude towards the prisoners of conscience as well as the violation of rights. He also intimidated to revenge on some of the prisoners including Atena Daemi for naming him in their letters.
    One of the notorious personnel of Evin Prison named Abbas Khani also filed a lawsuit against another prisoner, Maryam Zarghan who was on the brink of release.
    The Warden of Evin Prison is another plaintiff of Atena Daemi. According to the interrogator, Atena Daemi is accused of breaching the peace of prison with her hunger strike and sit-in protests. She committed these acts to call for the implementation of human rights and review on her case. She is also charged with insulting the prison’s authorities when they accused her of malingering following her hunger strike and her transfer to the infirmary.
     
     Atena Daemi is currently detained in women’s ward of Evin Prison. She is in her 9th months of temporary arrest and waiting for the verdict of the appeal’s court.
    In her defense, Atena Daemi requested the interrogator to allow her trusted physician to be present in the court and give testimony on her critical health condition in time of hunger strike so that they realize there was no malingering. The head of the infirmary is actually the person that should be prosecuted for the charges of depriving prisoners from medical services as well as accusing them.
    A source close to Atena Daemi confirmed the report and stated, ‘Abbas Khani visited the women’s ward of Evin Prison and told Ms. Daemi that she didn’t have any health issues, according to the medical tests. However, Atena believes that the hospital doctor has forged the medical records. The claim was made on the same day that Atena’s doctor had given her Monuril (a strong antibiotic) for her illness.
    It is noteworthy that Abbas Khani prohibited Atena’s transfer to the hospital on July 17, 2017, in retaliation, however, her transfer had been earlier confirmed by the prosecutor.’

    Source: What is the status of political prisoner, Atena Daemi?

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 8:03 am on August 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Those who met their appointment with Freedom 

    30,000 red roses

    On the anniversary of the 1988 massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in Iran

    The 1988 massacre of over 30,000 political prisoners in Iran

    has been described as the worst crime against humanity since World War II. [1]

    28 years after this genocide, the Iranian regime still refuses to acknowledge the executions, or provide any information as to how many prisoners were killed.

    Based on eyewitness accounts of survivors, the massacre had been prepared for from at least a year before. The order for the massacre came from Khomeini directly in the form of a religious decree (fatwa), calling for the execution of all who remained steadfast in their support for the opposition People’s Mojahedin of Iran.[2]

    A so-called Amnesty Commission (better known among prisoners as the Death Commission) asked a simple question from every prisoner: do you still support the PMOI/MEK? Those who answered yes were executed, even if they had already finished serving their original sentence.[3] None of the victims had any new activities while in detention and many of them were 15 or 16 years of age at the time of original arrest and prosecution.

    The executions started in the last week of July, peaking on July 28 until August 14, and continuing onto autumn and even the following year in some places.

    Naturally, the vast majority of the victims were members and supporters of the PMOI/MEK, but the order extended to other groups in later stages.

    Prisoners were hanged in groups, sometimes 10 to 15 at a time, and later transported out of prison by dump trucks, and buried in unmarked mass graves. There was no mercy on anyone, even young girls and pregnant women.

    Khomeini’s haste to execute was so abhorrent many of his closest confidantes had doubts about it. Hossein Ali Montazeri, Khomeini’s heir apparent and the country’s second highest authority at the time, urged for leniency and a slowdown.[4]

    In a book of memoirs published in December 2000, Montazeri pointed out the vicious tortures practiced especially against young girls and women before execution during the 1988 massacre.

    In a famous letter to Khomeini which led to his ouster, Montazeri wrote, “If you probably insist on your decision, at least order (the three-man Death Commission) to base their rulings on unanimous vote not that of the majority. And women should also be made exceptions, especially women who have children. And finally, the execution of several thousand people in several days will backfire.”

    From this letter we can understand the role and impact of women in the prisons of those days. They were firm and resilient and inspired resistance despite knowing the fact that they would have to go through the horrifying experience rape before being hanged. But they said NO to the executioners.

    It has been reported that 80 percent of PMOI women detained in the Women’s Ward 3 of Evin Prison had been massacred by September 1988. They included Monireh Rajavi, who had two small daughters and was executed only because she was the sister of the Iranian Resistance’s Leader Massoud Rajavi. There was also Ashraf Ahmadi, a political prisoner from the Shah’s time, with four children. The victims also included a wide range of people from various professions, including PMOI’s female candidates for parliamentary elections Fatemeh Zare’ii from Shiraz, and Zohreh Ainol-Yagheen from Isfahan. Dr. Hamideh Sayyahi and Dr. Shourangiz Karimian, along with her sister, and National Volleyball Team player Forouzan Abdi were among those executed in the 1988 massacre.

    An audio clip just recently released by Montazeri’s family on his website, also reveals dreadful details about the massacre of women. The tape recording from Mr. Montazeri’s meeting with members of the Death Commission, includes an example about the execution of a 15-year-old girl who had been taken to prison only two days before to break her resistant brother but since she did not denounce her executed brother, she was executed, as well.

    The tape also includes reference to the execution of a pregnant woman in Isfahan.

    The overall picture of the 1988 massacre is totally inadequate because the massacre was extensive, carried out in prisons all across the country. In some instances, there was not any survivor. The clerical regime dealt with every information regarding the massacre as top secret, not allowing any leaks.

    So, what is known about the massacre has been extracted and pieced together from the limited number of reports by survivors and families who were called to collect the bodies of their loved ones,[5] as well as from scattered acknowledgments made by the regime’s former officials as noted in this article.

    The other side of this crime against humanity is of course, the steadfastness of a generation of prisoners who did not buckle under the threat of death and defended their identity which was akin to their nation’s freedom. They thus sealed their nation’s right to freedom of choice and thought, and turned this great crime against humanity into an epical humane epitome of human grace and grit which makes every conscientious human being humble before its magnificence.

    The Iranian Resistance has renewed its call for the international prosecution of all perpetrators of the 1988 massacre and crime against humanity in Iran, who are still in power and hold important positions of authority. They include Khamenei (then President under Khomeini), Rafsanjani (then acting Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces), Rouhani (then assistant to the acting Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces), and members of the death commission, Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi (Minister of Justice under Hassan Rouhani), Hossein-Ali Nayyeri (head of the Supreme Disciplinary Court for Judges under Rouhani), Morteza Eshraqi (then Prosecutor), and Ebrahim Raeesi (one of the top clerics, member of the Assembly of Experts, and Khamenei’s appointed head of Astan Qods-e Razavi foundation, which is an important political and economic powerhouses funding the regime’s war efforts).

    [1] A former Intelligence Ministry deputy recorded a video clip in 2008, in which he revealed that the clerical regime had massacred some 33,700 political prisoners and buried them in mass graves. According to Reza Malek, there are between 170 to 190 mass graves across the country.

    [2] “Whoever at any stage continues to belong to the (PMOI/MEK) must be executed,” Khomeini’s fatwa read.

    [3] Khomeini assigned a three-member so-called “Amnesty Commission”, who held summary trials and actually interrogated prisoners to determine their fate.

    The questions were focused on whether the inmate continued to have any allegiances to the PMOI/MEK. If the prisoners were not willing to fully collaborate with the regime against the PMOI/MEK, it was viewed as a sign of sympathy to the organization and the sentence was immediate execution.

    [4] Montazeri was ousted and placed under house arrest until his death in 2009, for his protests against the massacre.   

    [5] A report from Shiraz indicated: “When we the rumors of the massacres spread among the public, we referred to the prison. Executioners told us, ‘What did you expect, that we serve you sweets and candies? We killed 860 people at once in one day! Now, if you hold a funeral, we will raze down your house as well.’ “

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 5:25 pm on July 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Justice seeking movement has shaken up the regime relying on massacre- Maryam Rajavi’s message on the anniversary of the 1988 massacre 

    Justice seeking movement has shaken up the regime relying on massacre- Maryam Rajavi’s message on the anniversary of the 1988 massacre

    Fellow compatriots, 29 years ago on these days, Khomeini, the century’s most ruthless murderer, launched the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners affiliated with the PMOI and other dissident groups.

    Justice seeking movement has shaken up the regime relying on massacre- Maryam Rajavi’s message on the anniversary of the 1988 massacre

    He sought to uproot the resistance movement in a bid to preserve his own rule. He wanted to do something that no one would ever again think of change and of freedom. He found his answer in the hasty annihilation of the PMOI and all those who persisted on the ideal of freedom.
    In the face of such unprecedented brutality, the PMOI prisoners took pride in going to the gallows in the thousands. They registered themselves in the historical conscience of their nation as symbols of dedication and loyalty to the cause of freedom. And the history of Iran was blessed with the light and hope of their unwavering resistance.
    Throughout the years, their blood has continued to run in the veins of society, provoking the spirit of rebellion and protest in the struggle against the tyrannical clerical regime.
    Our endless salutes to all the prisoners massacred in 1988 who persisted on their positions against the Velayat-e Faqih under interrogation and stood up for freedom. Their struggle and resistance has been battering the regime since then until now.
    Khomeini concealed their names, but they are the most famous men and women of Iran’s modern history. The regime hid their graves, but they have remained the most spirited and obvious members of the nation fighting in the field. Long years pass since they kissed the gallows, but they continue to sing the crimson anthem of freedom.
    My fellow compatriots and courageous youths,
    Last year, on July 28, 2016, the families of martyrs and political prisoners issued a statement announcing a campaign commemorating the victims of the 1988 massacre. The movement demanding justice for the victims of the massacre is now one-year-old. During this period, the campaign energized by the victims’ sacrifice and our nation’s will to achieve freedom has time and again shaken up the clerical regime that relies on massacre.
    It has brought about broad-based knowledge in Iranian society particularly among the youth about the dreadful crimes committed by the Velayat-e Faqih regime. It shattered the mullahs’ conspiracy of silence to cover up the 1988 massacre and compelled the ruling clerics to confess to their involvement in this crime against humanity.
    The justice seeking movement dealt a heavy setback to Khamenei who had nominated a death-commission member for presidency. It defeated the regime in its totality in the elections sham, as the nation embraced the movement’s slogan of “no to the executioner, no to the charlatan.” The campaign also resuscitated this case internationally while it had been silenced by the western governments’ policy of appeasement.
    These efforts led to the point where the UN Secretary General noted the 1988 massacre in his annual report this year.
    This year-long campaign proved that the Velayat-e Faqih regime is extremely vulnerable with regards to the slaughter on which the pillars of its rule rest. As a result, every effort by the mullahs to incriminate the PMOI immerses them even further in a quagmire of disgrace.
    Since the outset, when the news of this massacre began to leak out of prisons, the Iranian Resistance has endeavored to expose this crime on the international level. In a letter to the UN Secretary General at the time, Massoud Rajavi, the leader of the Iranian Resistance, wrote, “The international community must compel the regime to answer questions about the identities of all those executed, the date, place and manner of executions and their place of burial. It must introduce those in charge and those who carried out this major crime.”
    In the past year, too, supporters of the Iranian Resistance risked their own lives to collect the previously unannounced names of victims of the massacre and addresses of their graves, as well as information about members of the death commissions in the provinces.
    I thank all of them and everyone who joined the justice seeking movement over the past year. I thank all the youths and students who voiced their demand for justice for victims of the 1988 massacre at any opportunity, and the prisoners who supported the movement under the most difficult circumstances.
    Nevertheless, everything done so far has been only the first step. The Iranian people and Resistance will not relent until those in charge of the massacre of political prisoners, namely those who hold the highest positions of authority in this regime, face justice.
    In the start of the second year of the movement calling for justice, I urge everyone to help further expand the movement. This is part and parcel with the Iranian people’s quest for freedom and the overthrow of the regime in its entirety. Accordingly,
    1. I call on all the courageous youths of this land to stage protests to compel the regime’s leaders to publish a complete list of names of those massacred, addresses of their graves, and names of those in charge of the slaughter.
    2. I call on the families of martyrs and political prisoners to gather at the gravesites of their martyrs and in this way force the clerical regime to recognize their trampled right to hold memorial ceremonies for their heroic children.
    3. I call on my fellow compatriots to actively participate in the national campaign to collect the information of the martyrs, find their tombs and expose the mullahs and murderers involved in this crime.
    4. I call on young seminary students and the clergy who have distanced themselves from the ominous regime of the velayat-e faqih to openly condemn the massacre and distance themselves from Khomeini and the inhuman and anti-Islamic velayat-e faqih regime.
    5. I call on parliaments, political parties, human rights organizations, religious leaders, political and social personalities in various countries to strongly condemn the massacre of political prisoners in Iran in an act of solidarity with the Iranian people. They should urge their governments to make their continued political and commercial relations with the mullahs’ religious dictatorship contingent on end to executions and torture in Iran.
    6. I urge the UN High Commissioner on human rights to immediately set up an independent committee to investigate the 1988 massacre and subsequently put those in charge before justice. I urge the UN Security Council to make the arrangements for prosecution of the regime’s leaders for committing crime against humanity.
    All the major cases of carnage and repression in the past quarter of a century in Iran are linked to the person of Khamenei and his corrupt offices. He earned succession to Khomeini by actively participating in the 1988 massacre, and must be prosecuted for crimes against humanity before all the other leaders of the regime.
    Dear compatriots, the main target of the massacre in 1988 was the PMOI. Khomeini taught his successors that to preserve power, they must annihilate the group that persists on its positions. In the past three decades, Khamenei and his accomplice, have put this lesson into practice.
    In contrast, the PMOI and the National Council of Resistance of Iran, as the democratic alternative to the regime, are the force of victory and freedom. They will realize their glorious goal by relying on the people of Iran. On that day, the victims of the 1988 massacre and all the 120,000 martyrs fallen for Iran’s freedom will live in the determination of Iran’s youths, in 1000 bastions of rebellion, 1000 Ashrafs, and in the army of freedom. They will thus start a blessed era of freedom, democracy and equality.
    Endless salutes to the shining stars of the Iranian Resistance, the proud martyrs of 1988.
    And hail to the pioneers who have risen to call for justice for the victims and continue their path and cause on a higher level for Iran’s freedom.

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 6:31 am on July 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Shahin Gobadi,   

    NCRI – FAC member comments on new sanctions against Iran regime by US Congress 

    Shahin Gobadi, a member of the NCRI Foreign Affairs Committee commented on adoption of a bill by the US Senate and House of Representatives on the Iranian regime for violating human rights and pursuing ballistic missiles. He called the bill that included extending sanctions on the IRGC for its role in terrorism, as a positive and important step. Gobadi also commented on the following steps for full implementation of this bill and the need to complete these sanctions with urgent actions against officials in charge of executions, torture and particularly the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988.

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 8:17 pm on July 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    How blood of innocents has become an endless nightmare for Iranian regime 

    People chant slogans and hold pre-revolutionary Iranian flags in Paris, on August 17, 2013, as they take part in a rally marking the 25th anniversary of the 1988 massacre of Iranian political prisoners. (AFP)

     By F. Mahmoudi
    In Iran, 1980s is known as a bloody decade as thousands of political opponents were executed in brutal mass murder.
    In the summer of 1988, a massive slaughter took place in Iran’s prisons. Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, the successor of Khomeini, was dismissed as a result of his objection to this massacre.
    In September 2016, an audio tape from a meeting of the late Ayatollah Montazeri with members of the committee of executioners (commonly known by Iranians as death committee) was published by his son, which led to his arrest and prosecution.
    In the audio tape, Ayatollah Montazeri described this massacre as the worst crime in the history of the Islamic Republic, and named Ibrahim Raisi, Mostafa Pour Mohammadi, Hossein Ali Nayeri and other coordinators as criminals.

    Judgment against Islam

    In a recent TV interview, Ali Fallahian, the minister of intelligence during the Rafsanjani government, said: “The view of Mr. Montazeri, who disagreed with Imam (Khomeini), was that these executions will ultimately cause a “historical judgment” against us, a judgement against Islam, so it is to our benefit not to conduct these executions, but Imam said that you must perform your religious duty and don’t wait for the judgment of history.”
    The families of victims of 1988 massacre are currently seeking justice for their loved ones who were secretly executed and buried in mass graves at nights without any due process. The call for justice led by Iranian opposition, which started last year, caused a challenge for both of the regime’s factions during the presidential elections.
    The created chaos between regime’s factions forced Khamenei to comment in a recent speech that “no one should be allowed to change the place of martyr and henchman in relation to the executions of the 1980s.”
    What he meant was that the heads of this government are executioners in the eyes of the Iranian people, and this will create internal and international consequences that must be avoided.

    Nimrooz movie

    Additionally, state-controlled media released Khamenei’s praises about the “Nimrooz” movie, a production funded by the Iran revolutionary guard corps (IRGC) aimed at demonizing the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), a prominent opposition movement. The reason of making this film was to prevent another uprising similar to 2009, in which the MEK played a pivotal role in organizing protests against the regime.
    After the release of the film, former political prisoners and families of executed prisoners condemned the events showed during this film and called it as a distortion of the reality in history.
    In another hasty event, the Iranian regime put up a show, a tour of Evin Prison, to international delegations. The purpose of holding this tour for 50 ambassadors of different countries on July 5 was to destroy and wash the traces of the regime’s crimes. Amnesty International called this tour a “crude PR Stunt” and mentioned in a statement that Evin prison is known in the world as a symbol of wide political oppression in Iran.
    The executed prisoners of the 1980s were members and supporters of opposition groups of the Iranian regime, such as the MEK, Marxists and Kurds. MEK members and supporters accounted for more than 90 percent of the victims. Beleaguered in Iraq in the post 2003 era, the MEK experienced a very difficult and dangerous situation, particularly over the last decade.
    Under such circumstances this movement has been able to attract public sympathy through mass media, especially satellite and Internet. Currently, the Iranians and the International communities have become curious to acquire knowledge about this movement.

    Inhuman seige

    In face of an inhumane siege and the looming danger of further massacres, members of MEK put up a heroic persistence and defended themselves with bare hands and survived the many plots of their enemies. Eventually, the MEK members exited Iraq and resettled in Albania. Now, the MEK is finding a fast-growing following in Iran, especially among the youth, creating a serious challenge for the Iranian regime.
    With the rise of the call for justice for 1988 massacre, the Iranian regime is trying to destroy the evidence of this brutal murder and discourage the youth from joining the opposition movement. It has produced a propaganda film to change the place of martyr and executioner, and destroyed the mass graves of executed prisoners.
    The Iranian youth, even the children of regime officials, want to know the reality and the truth of what happened in the 1980s, and the history of the movement that recently held a huge gathering in Paris. Also, they want to know what message it conveys for them.
    Meanwhile, Khamenei has ordered to produce another film for Assadollah Lajevardi, the former head of Evin prison known as “Evin hangman,” who was one of the criminals 1988 massacre. “Hopefully, you can do something for Lajevardi as well. He is one of the figures who deserves something. His name was mentioned in this film, but he is one of the persons that we called him ‘strong man’ before,” Khamenei said.
    It seems the spilled blood of the innocents who were ruthlessly murdered in Iran is now undermining the foundations and the very existence of the Iranian regime. Sympathy for the victims and their family has now penetrated the depths of the Iranian society and has become an endless nightmare for regime.
    As Rahimpour Azghadi, a Khamenei confidant has said, “the events of the ‘80s and 88 will uproot the regime, even if we have the largest missile in store.”

    Source: How blood of innocents has become an endless nightmare for Iranian regime

     
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