Posts Tagged ‘1988 Massacre’

1988 Massacre,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq

Destroying mass graves of the 1988 massacre of MEK political prisoners

Maryam Rajavi Calls for End of Destruction of 1988 Massacre Victims’ Graves

Destroying mass graves of the 1988 massacre of MEK political prisoners

Mass graves of the 1988 Massacre of political prisoners being destroyed by the Iranian regime, in an attempt to hide the evidence

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), made a statement calling for urgent action to prevent the destruction of the graves of the victims of the 1988 massacre in Iran and the removal of all evidence of their existence.

Mrs. Rajavi specifically called upon the Secretary-General of the U.N., the U.N. Security Council, the U.N. Human Rights Council, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as international human rights organizations, to take action against the regime’s destruction of the victims of the 1988 massacre’s graves, particularly in Ahvaz. Mrs. Rajavi noted in her statement that the regime’s attempts to stop the Call-for-Justice movement from gaining traction have failed, as well as their hopes that the world would forget the massacred political prisoners. As a result, the mullahs have resorted to desperate attempts to destroy evidence of their genocide in order to evade the consequences of their crime against humanity.

Mrs. Rajavi warned that destroying the graves of the martyrs of the 1988 massacre, whether to torture the families of the victims or to destroy evidence, is a crime unto itself that must be answered for.

She warned that the destruction of the graves of the martyrs –whether aimed at inflicting a vicious psychological torture on their families or at removing the evidence of this crime against humanity– is a major crime in itself whose masterminds and perpetrators must face justice and be held accountable.

Over the past few weeks, the regime has demolished the graves of victims of the 1988 massacre (many, if not most of whom were MEK members) in Ahvaz and is building roads on their sites to cover the evidence of their existence.

 

The 1988 massacre occurred after the end of the Iran-Iraq war. Political prisoners, specifically MEK members were executed extra-judicially in groups and buried in mass graves. Some of those who were executed had been released and were re-arrested so they could be executed. MEK members were arrested for activities such as distributing leaflets and taking part in anti-government protests, according to Amnesty International.

 

A previous investigation by Amnesty International and Justice for Iran found that the regime poured concrete over half of a mass grave in Tabriz between 2016 and 2017, according to satellite images. Also according to Amnesty International, in 2016 in Qorveh, Kurdistan province, regime authorities bulldozed gravestones and memorial signs put up by grieving family members in 2016, saying the land had been designated for “agricultural” purposes.

 

In April, Amnesty International issued a press release discussing their 31-page report on the 1988 massacre and the regime’s attempt to cover up their crimes by destroying graves. The report, which was released in conjunction with Justice for Iran, estimated that there may be more than 120 graves where victims of the 1988 massacre are buried.

 

According to the press release, regime authorities have concealed the fate and location of the victims for almost three decades. Families have not been allowed to hold memorials or decorate the mass grave sites with flowers or messages, which prevents them from observing burial rites and customs. According to Amnesty International, families have faced prosecution for seeking the truth about the victims.

Staff Writer

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1988 Massacre,Behzad Naziri,MEK

Behzad Naziri-FAC-NCRI

Iranian protests stem from a place of anger and exasperation over a lack of answers

Behzad Naziri-FAC-NCRI

Behzad Naziri, member of the Foreign affairs committee of the NCRI speaking at a conference.

Behzad Naziri, a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) describes the roots of the recent mass protests in Iran.

Writing for the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Behzad Naziri in his piece entitled “Mass Protests Stemming from Fury” referred to the analysis of the Iranian regime’s 40-year history and mass mobilizations against the regime to ascertain the causes behind public demonstrations.

The Causes

Behzad Naziri argued that there were several factors which created an environment for mass public mobilisation. He cited economic injustice, widespread unemployment, the regime’s inability to meet the needs of the lower classes, rising economic inequality between the mullahs and the public, the corruption pandemic, ethnic discrimination, and violence against women. The combination of these factors instils an atmosphere of fury and anger throughout the Iranian population.

However, although these factors contribute to the mobilization of the Iranian population, they cannot explain why the protests have intensified in recent months. The population has been oppressed and silenced by the regime since its seizure of power in 1979. Yet only now is the regime losing its grip on power.

Renewed Calls for Truth and Justice

Naziri offers an explanation. He said the most recent wave of crackdowns and protests comes amid renewed calls for an inquiry into the killings of political prisoners in the summer of 1988.

Mass grave sites were uncovered in Khavaran, in southeastern Tehran. The regime buried the bodies of 30,000 political prisoners mainly the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran MEK activists in 120-190 mass grave sites in the summer of 1988. The perpetrators of the atrocities have never been brought to justice despite calls from the MEK, and many international human rights organizations.

The regime has tried to cover up many aspects of the executions. They have not revealed the identities of MEK members executed in the 80s. They also tried to hide the burial sites in Beheshte Reza, Mashhad.

Many of those involved in political and economic protests against the regime are human rights defenders seeking truth and information about one of the bloodiest episodes in Iran’s history. Conversations on social media have brought the regime’s atrocities to the surface, and memorial gatherings have been held in Khavaran.

Naziri argues the protests and rebellions stems from a place of anger and exasperation over a lack of answers and human rights abuses. He predicts that they will only intensify and become “more severe and irreversible by the day”.

He ends his article by describing the protestors. He said the protestors symbolize “the sacrifice and blood of many men and women who 30 years ago, promised the freedom of the oppressed Iranians from the tyranny of the bloodthirsty regime of Mullahs”.

Staff Writer

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1988 Massacre,Maryam Rajavi,Mass Graves,MEK,NCRI

Maryam Rajavi Commemorates MEK Martyrs During 1988 Massacre

Unraveling Iranian Regime’s Deeds During 1988 Massacre of MEK Activists

Alireza Avaei, Member of Death Committee During 1988 Massacre

Alireza Avaei-Current Minister of Justice in Iran appointed by the “moderate” Rouhani

The mullahs’ crimes of the past continue to be unearthed. This week, Amnesty International published the results of an investigation into the regime’s mass executions of more than 30,000 political prisoners (mainly MEK activists) in 1988. The report revealed the sites of seven mass graves. In an attempt to hide their macabre handiwork, the regime tried to destroy all evidence of the gravesites between 2003 and 2017.

As the mullahs try to escape responsibility, Amnesty International revealed the locations of the seven suspected locations. It suspects mass graves in Mashhad, Ahvaz, Tabriz, Khavaran, Rasht, Qorveh, and Sanandaj were used to dispose of victim’s bodies. At a later date, the regime attempted to level the grave sites to mask their locations.

There are Still Unanswered Questions

Although Amnesty International’s findings represent progress into unraveling the circumstances surrounding the forced disappearances, there are still questions that require answers.

Reza Shafiee reports that the exact number of deaths at the hands of the mullahs in 1988 is still unknown. Lower estimates put the number of political prisoners executed at around 5,000. However, the Iranian opposition, the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK), based on eyewitness reports and remarks by former Intelligence ministry agents, many more were killed, estimating as many as 30,000 were arbitrarily executed.

Those Responsible Must be Brought to Justice

In his article, Reza Shafiee calls for an investigation into the events that unfolded in 1988. Many of the suspects responsible for the executions still hold powerful positions in the clerical regime in Iran today.

Shafiee singles out Ebrahim Raisi and Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi. Both men allegedly were part of the “Death Commission”, a task force responsible for finding members of the MEK and administering their execution. Now, Raisi is the high-profile custodian to the Imam Reza Foundation. Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi was in Rouhani’s first cabinet as the Justice Minister for the regime. Another person involved in the executions, Alireza Avii, succeeded Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi as Justice Minister in Rouhani’s second cabinet.

The Death Commission Delivered as Many as 30,000 Death Sentences in a Single Summer

Maryam Rajavi Commemorates MEK Martyrs During 1988 Massacre

During a ceremony in Tirana, Maryam Rajavi commemorates the memory of 30,000 political prisoners slain during 1988 Massacre- July 2017

In 1988, the Death Commission was tasked to eliminate Iran of MEK supporters. They rounded up MEK activists and tried them in show trials which lasted mere minutes, before sending them to the gallows. Victims could be incriminated for the smallest details. Many of those executed had done nothing more than take part in a peaceful demonstration called by MEK, distributed leaflets, or were affiliated with the political opposition group, the MEK.

The members of the Death Commission have shown no remorse for the atrocities they committed. Shafiee reports how Pour-Mohammadi expressed pride for the crimes he committed, saying he was proud to “carry out God’s will and he has not lost sleep over what he did.”

The MEK and other human rights champions and political opposition groups in Iran have urged the international community to help bring those responsible to justice. The families of victims deserve answers to the question of what happened to their loved ones.

While the people of Iran are bravely taking to the streets to demand these answers, they need the support of the international community. Let tough actions and a firm stance towards the violent and brutal clerical regime send a message; that they will not get away with the slaughter of thousands of innocent civilians.

Staff Writer

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