Statement by Special Representative on Iran

MAURICE COPITHORNE, Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in Iran, said the President of Iran, in his inaugural address in August, had said Iran had no choice but to put the emphasis on the rights and demands of the people, in order to make progress and to resolve the country's various problems. Surely, few could disagree with such an assessment. As indicated in the report, there were signs enough that the incorporation of human rights values into Iranian society was proceeding at an accelerating rate.

He said, however, the implementation of such rights by the Government had lagged behind evident public expectation. In the last four months, the right to free expression had been caught up in broader political issues. In one case, legal proceedings had begun against a member of Majilis deputies, some for remarks construed to be critical of the judiciary. Several had been sentenced to terms of various lengths. In a strongly worded response, the President declared the Constitution provided a guarantee of free speech for members of the Majilis, particularly within the Majilis themselves.

On minorities, Mr. Copithorne said information provided in recent months suggested the situation of some groups had not improved, and indeed, could have deteriorated. Regarding punishments, the last four months had seen a crackdown by authorities on what was seen to be amoral and anti-social conduct, and a sharp increase in punishments that were clearly contrary to international standards. Those included hangings and floggings, often in public. In August, the Supreme Court ordered a retrial of 15 so-called rogue elements in the security services who had been convicted in January of the 1998 murders of intellectuals and political dissidents. According to press reports, the Intelligence Minister declared the killings were insignificant mistakes that had been forgiven by the public. The detention of religious national activists was also an ongoing problem. The problem had been described in an earlier report, in which the Government made a commitment to release the activists on bail. However, many were still in jail. Indeed, according to recent information, some remained in solitary confinement after some eight months of detention.

He said it was very difficult to report the human rights situation in Iran had improved since the report was completed. Indeed, in some important areas such as punishments and other aspects of the legal system, there had been a serious backsliding. However, there was satisfaction in being able to express immense respect for Iran, its people and its culture, and the very deep admiration of those Iranians seeking to improve the human rights situation for all citizens, including women and minorities. The road was not an easy one, but Iran would be able to win great international esteem for itself by staying the course, by building a society in which the dignity of all individuals would be respected and nourished.



Distr.
GENERAL

A/56/278
10 August 2001


Original: ENGLISH


Fifty-sixth session
Item 131 (c) of the provisional agenda
Human rights questions: human rights situation and
reports of special rapporteurs and representatives

Situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Note by the Secretary-General



The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit to the members of the General Assembly the interim report prepared by Maurice Copithorne, Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran in accordance with a decision taken by the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session of 2001.


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The situation in Iran, in the past few days, when the people chanted anti regime slogan. In that mess protest in many cities, 2000 people have been arrested, 1000 of them are under 18 years old " Noroz"

The week of full execution " Intkhab", 3 people in Even prison and 3 in Qaser prison have been executed.

Kurdistan # 323, Sardesht, the Iranian authority shot at a vehicle in district of Merdowave, and killed an elderly woman and her name was Aman Ibrahimian and her son Azad Ibrahimian on September, 26, 2001

Kurdistan #323, Bane, the Iranian authority shot and killed a peasant with name Omar from village of Kaniqati on September, 16, 2001

 

Kurdistan #323, Sallas, the Iranian autority shot at the crowed of the Kurdish people in tawen of Sallas killed 3 and injord 6 on September 24, 2001

Kurdistan # 324, Sardesht, a 19 years young man was killed by steping on a mine, which was a trap for innocent people by the Iranian authority onSeptember 12, 2001

We will talk about Khadamiani directly or indirectly, as you know, we will ask about his translator. A-investigated from Kurdistan. B- his brother has been killed in the Iran-Iraq war. C- he has no contact with any Kurdish people in B.C at all. D – even now nobody knows who is his translator’s- E- there is a report that the Iranian authority has arrested a few people, and some of them left the country and they are in Turkey now.

Comparing Copithorne’s last report about ethnic and particularly the Kurds with the recent one.

We should provide, all the reports that we handed to Copithorne in our last meeting as well as the one we sent to him by a letter and email.

Report from " Jamhory Islami ", 48 prisoners confirmed have AIDS in province of Kurdistan. It’s related to our last news from Kurdistan # 319.

That’s all I have for now Sayed,

Thanks for your time,

Yours truly,

Sadi Abdi October, 29,2001

 

 

 

 

UN EXPERT CONCERNED ABOUT CONTINUED DETENTION OF MEMBERS OF FREEDOM MOVEMENT OF IRAN, RELIGIOUS-NATIONALIST ALLIANCE



15 January 2001 to November 28,2001


The Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Maurice Copithorne, has expressed deep concern to the Iranian Government over the continued detention of at least ten supporters of the Freedom Movement of Iran and the Religious-Nationalist Alliance, detained on 11 March and 7 April 2001, as well as over the conditions in which their trials are being held.

Some of the detainees were released on bail during the summer, but at least ten continue to be in detention, the Special Representative notes. The trials by the Revolutionary Court started on 28 November 2001 and 8 January 2002. Both trials are being held in camera and it is reported that the lawyers have been denied access to the files because they have refused to sign commitments not to disclose any details.

Some of these persons were connected with the Freedom Movement of Iran, the unregistered but long-tolerated organization founded by the first post-revolution Prime Minister, the Special Representative points out. Some of the detainees are Muslim reformers of long-standing, active in the struggle against the Shah, he continues.

In several urgent communications to the Government dated 24 July 2001, 29 October 2001 and 28 November 2001, the Special Representative has urged the Iranian Government to use all the resources at its disposal to have the detainees released and to guarantee the protection of their rights to physical and mental integrity, as well as to a fair trial.

In his letters the Special Representative has expressed his concern at the issuing of temporary detention orders in apparent disregard for the Iranian Constitution which clearly limits the cases in which judges can resort to this measure and in a situation in which no evidence has been made public in support of the charges brought against the detainees. He has also conveyed his deep concern for the denial of their right to contact their families and lawyers, and the later practice of arranging periodic meetings under stressful conditions.


The conditions in which the detainees were and in some cases continue to be held in a military camp, often in prolonged incommunicado detention, exposed to psychological and physical pressure and the denial of access to medical treatment to some of the detainees have also been a matter of great concern to the Special Representative.

In his representations the Special Representative has repeatedly referred to his conversation on 9 July 2001 with Abbas-Ali Alizadeh, Chief of the Tehran Justice District, in which he was told that all of these detainees were about to be released on bail.In the context of the beginning of the trial of the second group of defendants, the Special Representative once again is urging the Government to honour this commitment and to use all the resources at its disposal to have the detainees still being held in prison released immediately, as well as to guarantee all of these persons a fair trial.

 



 

Sadi Abdi October 4,2001

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

205-95 St Andrews Ave

North Vancouver, BC

V7L 4M8

 

Professor Maurice Copithorne

Faculty of Law

1822 East Mall

Vancouver, BC. Canada V6T 1Z1

 

Re: Report of the Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, August 10, 2001

 

Dear Professor Copithorne,

 

We, the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (DPIK), received the Report of the Special Representative of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran dated August 10, 2001. Once again, on behalf of the Kurdish people in Iran, we thank you for your effort, hard work and also for trying to examine the "Kurdish issue" at the highest political level, the UN.

 

We studied the report very closely and unfortunately some points and issues mentioned in the report were extremely hard to comprehend. Therefore we, the DPIK, are writing to you so we can better understand the report, the reasons and the sources used to prepare the report.

 

On the report you write, "It was recently reported that the harassment of Kurdish Sunni clerics by the Special Clerical Court had ended." or "In the words of one Kurdish social worker, "the hatred that divided families is now over." You also write, "Kurdistan rates as the second poorest province, by almost all indicators" And so on.

 

As you might know the Islamic government recently has made Kurdish territory, particularly the province of Kermanshah, a "safe haven" for drug edicts, criminals, HIV patients and thieves from other parts of the country. ("Kurdistan #319" a publication from the central committee of the DPIK).

 

A daily national Iranian paper, "Nowroz", on it’s September 30th edition writes "All six Iranian MPs from the western Kurdistan province have resigned to protest at what they said is "discrimination" against Iran's Kurds and Sunni Muslim minority.

 

A justice Lawyer, Mr. Masaod Khosrawi, in an interview with IRNA, the government’s official agency, said that "After 5 years of Mr. Khatami’s presidency and constant discrimination, the Kurds in Iran have come to the conclusion that even their elected representatives are no longer effective." He also adds that, " out of every 20 Kurdish youth, 10 of them hold a university degree but sell vegetables in Tehran’s markets to make a living." He goes on to say, " the real issue over the resignation of the Kurdish members of parliament is not the appointment of a non-Kurd to replace the Kurdish provincial governor", the real issue, he says, "is the denial of all Kurds and their representatives’ justified rights by the Islamic regime."

 

Mr. Copithorne, as you might agree, the situation is observed and analyzed very differently by different sources and that has been our principle reason for taking our time to gather the most reliable information so you could use in your report, a fundamental principle that will be followed by all the members of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan. Our working relationship might also allow us to ask you why the information presented to you by DPIK at our last meeting was not used at the recent report at all.

 

With the recent development in Iran and President Khatemi’s speech on "policing" the whole society, the situation for the country and particularly for the Kurds in Iran is deteriorating very quickly.

 

We are confident and hopeful that your future reports will discuss the real issues facing the Kurds in Iran so the government can admit to the justified rights of more than 8 Million Kurds.

 

 

We thank you for your time and consideration and hope to talk to you in a very near future.

 

Yours truly,

 

Sadi Abdi

 

Member of International Relations Bureau

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, Canada

 

 


 

 

 

Q&A Session

 

 

A Meeting with

Professor Maurice Copithorne

 

 

 

 

Helping to Make a

Democratic Iran

 

 

 

 

July 28, 2000

 

 

 

 

 

1-At various time in Iranian history, the Kurds have sought some form of autonomy from the central government, if not outright independence. Does political autonomy remain the ultimate goal of Kurdish nationalist organizations?

 

Given the multi-ethnic society in Iran (Persian, Azeri, Kurd, Beloch, Arab, and Turkman), federalism is the best national solution. However, the Kurds in Iran are the only ethnic minority that is actively pursuing their rights from the central government. Unfortunately the other ethnic minorities are not noticeably active in their struggle. The autonomy for the Kurdish people in the framework of a democratic Iran has been the main slogan of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI), as the leader of the Kurdish struggle in Iran for 55 years. This slogan has been supported by more than 80% of the Kurdish people in Iran repeatedly. Whatever the case may be, the Kurdish people see the solution for the Kurdish issue within the framework of a democratic Iran. The Kurds in Iran do not believe in an "Independent greater Kurdistan." At the current time this view has no international acceptance.

2- Would the provision of some form of cultural autonomy (eg.the use of the Kurdish language in school, on television & radio; permission for Kurdish performing arts, such as traditional music, to be held in public) be a satisfactory interim step in the minds of the Kurds?

 

Education and official communication in Kurdish language has been one of the main demands of the Kurdish struggle from the very beginning. In fact " usage of Kurdish language freely" will be a principle achievement in an autonomous Kurdistan. Having such an opportunity will be seen as an important step in the right direction for addressing the Kurdish issue in Iran. We must clearly mention that cultural rights are not an acceptable alternative for political autonomy in Iranian Kurdistan.

3-In your opinion, what percentages of Iranian Kurds are supporters of, (a) independence; (b) autonomy within the Iranian state; or, (c) assimilation within a centralized Iranian state?

The majority of Iranian Kurds (as mentioned above) are strong supporters of autonomy. Given the current local political atmosphere, there is no political party with "Independence" slogan. Undoubtedly there are some Kurds in Iranian Kurdistan who desire to have an "Independent Greater Kurdistan"; However, the number of Iranian Kurds with such individualistic political desires are unnoticeable.

4-In the past, there has been conflict between the goals of the Iranian Kurds and those of the Azeri community (and, to a certain extent, local Christian communities). Given that these communities remain highly intermingled in some areas, how do you feel that these seemingly incompatible visions can be accommodated?

Without any doubts, the religious and ethnic differences have created some unfortunate conflicts among the people. The central authorities, to provoke more conflicts, have misused these differences to prolong their ruling time despotically. However, the current collective political thinking has matured enough that a suitable political environment can clear the way for more cooperation and coexistence between different ethnic minorities such as Kurds, Azeris and local Christians. The genuine cooperation among the Kurdish Republic of Mahabad and Azeri Republic in Tabriz after the WWII is a clear verification for common desire for coexistence without any problems. Now at the present time, both ethnic minorities, Kurds and Azeris, have far better educated people and more matured political thinking. Given the improved understanding of the circumstances by the political leaders from both sides, the political environment is enhanced more than ever to minimize the apparent ethnic and religious differences for a more peaceful coexistence.

Fortunately the relationship between the Kurds and Christians is one of friendship and cooperation despite a single unfortunate event between the two ethnic minorities during Simko (a Kurdish tribal leader in 1929) ruling time. This is another clear confirmation that religious differences are not an obstacle for the Kurds and other ethnic minorities for coexistence.

Regardless of the extent of the peaceful and cooperative relationships between the ethnic minorities in Iran, in order to promote further friendships and coexistence, the leaders of all organizations must always be ready to understand the circumstances and undo the deceiving plans being prepared by the Islamic Republic of Iran.

5-Given the fact that, in the major regional powers (i.e. Iran, Iraq, Turkey) have successfully manipulated the aspirations of various Kurdish nationalist organizations for their own benefit, how will the Kurds be able to achieve their own goals free from this type of intervention?

It is clear that the local governing authorities, through their deceptive policies, have left some deep marks on the struggle of the Kurdish people in all parts; however, we strongly believe that these governments have not succeeded in shifting the justified demands of the Kurdish people at all. The PDKI’s main objective from the beginning has been " Democracy for Iran and Autonomy for Iranian Kurdistan." Although the Islamic Republic of Iran has done everything in their power to block the way to achieve the main goal, the principle slogan for the Iranian Kurds remains to be the same.

If the central authorities have been successful in sidetracking the Kurdish movements in some parts and making the journey more difficult, it is because of the intermingling interests of all the involved parties in the region. Because of Kurdistan’s geopolitical situation, most Kurdish parties and organizations are driven to establish relations with neighboring states that also have a Kurdish population. Those states with deceptive policies often misuse the relationship and therefore slow the progress of Kurdish revolutionary movements.

The Kurdish parties have experienced difficulties, because of geopolitical reasons again, explaining the Kurdish issue to the "outside world," an obstacle that resulted in fewer solid friendships with the Western world. Fortunately, the current improved local and international political atmosphere has given the Kurds the opportunity to reveal this issue to the international communities in a clear fashion. The Kurds can now even dream of having a representative at the United Nations in the not too distant future.

Meanwhile, we believe the leaders of the Kurdish political organizations, through mutual respect and understanding of delicate issues, can minimize the effect of deceptive policies of the local states and promote brotherhood and coexistence.

 

 

6-In your views, what can the Kurds reasonably expect in terms of Tehra’s flexibility on the issue of autonomy for the Kurdish and other ethnic minority peoples? From the Kurds point of view, what are the limits?

We are not convinced that there is any evidence suggesting an improvement in the policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran toward the ethnic minorities. Based on the current proclaimed policies of the different sides of the Islamic government, there is no indication that there will soon be any progress either. However, if the political environment for a more tolerant society exists, the Kurdish demands in Iran are so basic that other people in many democratic countries take "these demands" for granted:

Official recognition of the Kurdish people as a Nation and acknowledgement of all the Kurdish territory in four provinces (West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Iyllam, and Kurdistan) in Western Iran. It is important to mention that at the present time only the province of Kurdistan is recognized as the Kurdish territory.

A free and unbiased system with an independent body that can supervise Municipal, Provincial and National elections throughout the Kurdish territory.

An end to the suppression and discrimination in Kurdistan and the complete transformation of all governmental, internal affairs and security matters to the Kurdish people and to their elected officials throughout the Kurdish territory.

Official recognition of the Kurdish language as the language of communication for day to day matters in government offices and courts of Law, assembling the right system for using Kurdish language (along with Persian language as the official national language) in schools throughout the Kurdish territory.

Recognition and compliance with all the stipulated liberties as alluded to in the international Declaration of Human Rights throughout Kurdish territory.

 

7-In the past, Moscow has supported the aspirations of Kurdish nationalist groups in Iran. Do you feel that Russia still has a valuable role to play, and what form would that take?

With the exception of the Soviet support that the two Republics of Kurds and Turks received in 1945 and 1946, the government in Moscow has never supported the political wishes of the Kurds, particularly of those in Iran. The Soviet government supported the two Republics to enhance its geopolitical situation four decades ago and withdrew the temporary support in the most delicate and damaging time frame. At the present time, the Kurds in Iran realistically do not expect the government in Moscow to support their political wishes.

In the long-term calculations, however, Moscow cannot be dismissed from the political outlooks. Russia, a permanent member of the Security Counsel, one of the superpowers in the world, the largest country with wide variety of resources and with a very long history with Iran, is still considered to be one of the most important countries in the world particularly within this region. Russia can therefore have a positive or negative influence on the policies of the region that the Kurds live in. Excluding the Russians from the political fronts by the Kurds or by the governments in the region is not only impossible but also unrealistic if even considered by other superpowers in the world.

8-Will the appointment, by Tehran, of a Kurd to the governship of Iranian Kurdistan be likely to make a significant difference for Kurdish aspirations for autonomy, and, if so, how would this come to pass?

Self-determination in the region that the Kurds inhabit is the most important matter for the Iranian Kurds. The right to elect officials, the right to use Kurdish language (as an official language in the Kurdish region) freely, and the right to self-expression are what will ultimately solve the problem of conflict not an appointment of a Kurd by Tehran as the governor of Iranian Kurdistan. Moreover, in a given self-determining environment we are confident that our people would overwhelmingly prefer to have an honest non-Kurd official rather than an appointed Kurd who is unfaithful and lacks moral qualifications.

9-Given that the majority of Iranian Kurds are adherents of the Sunni faith, is this a complicating factor in their efforts to attain some form of autonomy from the central government in Tehran?

It is a fact that religion has been a complicating factor in Kurds effort to attain self-determination from the central government in Tehran. It is also a fact that religious leaders in Tehran are discontent and resentful with respect to the adherents of the Sunni faith. In regard to the ethnic issues and recognition by the government, we must not forget that the central government in Tehran has also rejected the Kurds with adherents to Shiite faith.

The Kurdish people in Iranian Kurditsan and the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI), as the leader of the Kurdish revolutionary movement in Iranian Kurdistan, have never sought their justified rights by reinforcing the religious, faith or sexual differences. We (PDKI) believe that if the principles of the central government in Tehran are based on fairness and democracy, the apparent religious differences between different groups in Kurdistan will never stand in the way of a peaceful and collaborating society. The experience has shown that patriotic feelings always overcome religious beliefs and convictions. Needless to say that respecting Human Rights in a society does not restrict any religion freedom.

10-Are Kurdish adherents of the Shia faith more likely to have been assimilated into the Iranian State, as it is envisioned by the regime in Tehran?

It is true that most of the Kurdish revolutionary movements have been more popular in the Kurdish regions with more Sunni faith Kurds, however, patriotic feelings (for autonomy) among the Kurds with Shiite faith are as strong. If these patriotic feelings are sometimes underestimated is because the Kurdish political parties such as the PDKI have had much restricted access to those particular areas. The powerful military forces have taken away the opportunity from the Kurdish political parties to coach people more.

We believe that the majority of the Kurds, Sunni or Shiites, believe in autonomy for Iranian Kurdistan. When Tehran officially recognizes this autonomy, the Shiites Kurds will prefer to be a part of the autonomous Kurdistan. An autonomous Kurdistan to the Shiites Kurds means, to still being a part of Iran, and having free religious desires.

 

 

11-Given that the Persian people who make up only 50% of the population have

the central power to run the country, how would you as Kurd react to the other 50% non Persian minorities if you had the central power?

The Persian people do not make up 50% of the country’s population. In a true and free enumeration, the Persian people will make up about 40% of Iran’s total population. The second part of the question is a hypothetical one and it is difficult to be answered by an ethnic group that has been oppressed for so long. We believe that any nation, ethnic, or group in a society deserves fully to be recognized, respected, and acknowledged.

12-What is the distribution of the Kurdish population in Kurdish inhabitant cities in Iranian Kurdistan?.

At the general enumeration, various identity questions involving ethnicity and language of the citizens are not asked. An accurate portrayal of the true representation of different ethnic minorities in Iran is impossible to know. However, as far as we are aware, the majority of the citizens of major cities (with the exception of Uremia and Kermanshah) in all the four provinces (West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Iyllam, and Kurdistan) are Kurds. A very small portion of the people in all four provinces is made up of non- Kurd government officials, military, and security forces. More than 80% of the population in the city of Kermanshah (in the province of Kermanshah) and about 50% of the population in the city of Uremia (in the province of West Azerbaijan) are Kurds. It is important to mention that the surrounding areas of the two mentioned cities are inhabited by more than 80% Kurdish and by about 15% Azeris peoples.

13-I have noticed that some Kurds in Iran with reasonably " good jobs " do not publicly claim their nationalities, can you comment on that, why is that so?

It is unfortunate, that some Kurds might be somewhat hesitant in proclaiming their identity particularly outside of Iran. It might be surprising and perhaps unbelievable for many western people, nevertheless, making their identity known for many Kurds, especially for those working in non-Kurdish regions of Iran, might be too costly. Kurdish students and workers with nationalistic awareness are deprived of receiving education and employment in Kurdish regions. Many Kurds in search of better jobs have settled in different regions in Iran. Unfortunately, the government of Tehran, to press on with its authority, has been very successful in promoting many harsh discriminatory attitudes against ethnic minorities. This intolerant approach to the delicate issues has compelled many working people to abandon their identity. The government in Tehran to dishonor nationalistic beliefs has promoted different offensive sentiments against each ethnic minority in Iran.

14-Are current borders between Kurdistan provinces and other provinces such as Azerbaijan acceptable to you? If not what changes do you expect to be made?

The division of the provinces in Iran is not based on the ethnic make-up of the regions. Therefore, in some cases many different ethnic minorities live in the same province. We believe in co-existence with other ethnic minorities within the Kurdish region. If in any given autonomous environment, the partition of the provinces becomes an issue, the division must be based on geographical and economical factors. Through free referendum, the wishes of the citizens of a particular area for new borders must be honored. When the new borders maintain non-Kurd ethnic group within an autonomous Kurdistan and take some Kurds to outside of the Kurdish territory, all the ethnic and cultural rights must be fully respected for both groups.

Mosques

 

Mosque (called Hosseinieh by Shiite Moslems) is a place of prayer for all the Islamic branches. Many Hosseiniehs were built in the cities mostly inhabited by Muslims adherent to Sunni faith. Some Hosseiniehs were built during Shah’s regime but they are continuously being built by the current regime. There are Hosseiniehs even in the cities that have a very small population of Shiite (government officials, military, and security personnel). The Hosseiniehs are used by the Islamic Republic forces as headquarters for spying against the Kurdish activists, for food distribution to so called martyrs families, and also to promote the Shiite faith among the Sunni believers. These activities are done in the cities inhabited mostly by Sunni people, while there is no permission for Sunni to build mosques for prayers in the Shiite populated cities and/or in the cities with combinations of Shiite and Sunni. During the Shah, the regime agents built few mosques for Sunni but most of them are ruined or shut down during the Islamic Republic. Some of the Sunni mosques, which need to be renovated, can not be repaired. The government, by refusing to give permission to build Mosques, intends to decrease the number of Sunni Mosques to a possible minimum level.

There are more than a million Sunni living in the city of Tehran. There is no Sunni Mosque in that city. While there are many publicly funded Shiite Mosques being built, the government is not ready to give the permission to build a Sunni Mosque that is to be privately funded.

 

 

Some examples of Mosques in different cities with different combinations of Sunni and Shiite populations

 

Meyandoab (West Azerbiajan):

 

The Sunni Mosque is called Haj Esmailpour Mosque and is located nearby Imam-Square and next to second hand Seller-Bazar. It was built in 1973 was shut down by Islamic Republic agents in 1985 and no one has been permitted to enter the Mosque.

 

Sunni of this city complained to the relevant authorities in Tehran but nothing happened. The Mosque is ruined, doors and widows are broken, and some of the walls are going to fall. Molla Mahmoud, Friday-prayer Imam of this mosque, thus left the city and is in Boukan now.

 

Kermanshah (Kermanshah):

 

There are only two Sunni Mosques in Kermanshah. Sunni are the second largest people in the city. These two Mosques were built during the Shah’s regime. Sunni were allowed to start renovating the Shafei (Jame) Mosque. The renovation after 10 years has not yet been completed although the renovation is privately funded. The second Sunni mosque called Zardooei in the Feizabad-Allay that the people wanted to renovate but they are not allowed to do so.

On the other hand, many mosques are being built for Shittes in every allays and towns in Kermanshah. The new Jame mosque (a Shiite Mosque) was built in an area of 10,000 square meters with public funding.

 

Shiite Mosques are being built in the following towns in the Province Kermanshah: Vahdat, Bagh-e-Abrisham, Chayagelan, Blvd-Tagh-Bostan, Hafezieh, Dowlatabad, Hekmatabad, Sorkhe-lizeh, Moallem 1 and 2, etc.

 

Shahindezh (West Azerbiajan):

 

The Sunni Mosque is located close to Gheiam-Square. Some of the regime’s local agents, who were strongly against the Kurds, reported that anti-revolutionists were using the Mosque. Therefore, regimes ordered to destroy the Mosque. The place has now become a park. About 40/% of the population are Sunni in Shahindezh but many of them have migrated to Boukan and Saghghez because of Shiite pressure.

 

Khoy:

 

People in Akbarabad allay in Khoy wanted to build a Mosque in 1993. Officers of the Islamic Republic told them that they have no right to build a Mosque and did not allow them to do so.

People of Bidehvaran Allay of the city of Khoy wanted to build a Mosque in the fall of 1995. The Islamic Republic officers sent directly from Tehran along with the Friday-prayer Imam (a Shitte Imam) of the town nicknamed the Mosque "a Monafeghin, and antigovernment-Mosque" and consequently no Mosque for Sunni people was built.

In the spring of 1996 another town called Bireh inhabited by Kurds, wanted to build a Mosque but the effort was not successful because the Sunnie Kurds would not covert to Shitte faith.

 

 

Building Shiite Mosques in towns populated mostly by Sunni people

 

Shiite Hosseinieh in Sanandaj:

 

The Shiite Hosseinieh was built in 1966 during the Pahlavi regime. After the Islamic Republic came to the power in Iran, the project of building shitte Mosques in cities populated by Sunni people was brought to a full speed. The religious school in the "Holy" city of Ghom and the office of the Vali-Faghih, the office of the spiritual leader, had the direct and shared responsibility of the project. Haj Agha Mousavi, the representative of Vali Faghih in Kurdistan, ordered the development of a second Sanandaj Hosseinieh in 1995. The project, nicknamed "HAJAR," was initiated originally to build a Sunni Mosque, however, after the completion, the Mosque was turned to a Shiite Hosseinieh.

The regime paid enormous amount of money to buy properties from Sunni people to make the giant Shiite Mosque. When the Sunni people refused to sell their lands, the government used pressure tactics and seized their properties. Some people were paid 4 to 12 Million Tomans. Special Privileges and Rights are given to the Sunni who agree to sell their properties.

Under the same project, HAJAR, the government has abolished three Sunni Mosques (please see the enclosed pictures taken from one of the Mosque called Hejereh Khatoon Mosque).

 

Marivan:

 

Many Hosseinieh are being built in other cities in the Kurdish regions. When there is not enough Shitte prayers to visit the Hosseiniehs, the governemnt uses these places as Headquarters for their military and security forces.

 

Saghghez:

 

Hosseinieh is located at Oghab (Shahlou) Square. Exactly 28 shops owned by Sunni people were destroyed for building the Hosseinieh.

 

The name of some of the store and business owner follows:

 

Mohammad Valizadeh (Mohammadzadegan) whose two shops were destroyed. He is a brother of martyr Abbas Valizadeh ( an advocate of the Democrat Party of Iranian Kurdistan). He still has not received any compensation for his confiscated properties yet.

Mohammad Hossein Mohammadi, one shop

Mohammad Raouf Sheikhi, two shops

Molla Seyed Alla addin Seyedi, one shop

Mohammad Sadeghi from Salavatabad, Sanandaj residing in Saghghez, one shop

Saleh Sabzi, one shop

Hassan, one shop

Mohammad Khademi, one shop, as a result he became severely depressed

Abdolkarim Vakili, he died from an instant Heart attack right after his property was confiscated.

 

Pave:

 

A Hosseinieh was built close to a cemetery that is well respected by the government. All the people buried in the cemetery were killed in the fight against the Kurds when Imam Khomeini declared Holly war against the Kurds in 1979. The regime spent enormous amount of many to make it look really "special."

 

Shiraz:

 

The regime closed down the only Sunni Mosque in 1996. The people would not agree to have an Imam with Shiite beliefs.

 

Bandar Abbas:

 

After the assassination of Haj Mohammad Ziaei in 1995 the Sunni Mosque in Bandar-Abbas was closed for two years. Sunni religious School of Mansour Aghaei was closed for three years in 1996 and the instructor is forbidden from teaching and making speech. He spent one year in prison. Most of the books of Jalaladdin Roumi Library in Mansour Aghaei’s School were seized.

 

Mashhad:

 

There was an old Mosque called Feiz, which was built by a Pakistani. The Mosque was destroyed 1n 1994 and the people who complained were all imprisoned and many were injured.

 

 

Sunni Leaders in Kurdistan

 

Since the rulers of the Islamic Republic of Iran officially believe that Shiite is the only true branch of Islam, they practically assault the Sunni clergies in Kurdistan and other areas of Iran. Any Sunni clergy, who resists against the Shiite development policy, is forced to leave religious activities. We will point to these peoples in the followings:

 

West Azerbaijan:

 

Molla Mohammad Alouti from the city of Baneh who taught at Boukan Ghaba Mosque, was forced not to teach because of not going to the Religious Clergies Council and not getting salary from the government. His children were treated in such a way that if their father does not co-operate with the regime policies, they will be fired from their jobs.

Molla Hussein son of Molla Obeidollah, the nephew of Molla Mohammad Imami who taught at Dashband Mosque of Boulkan was fired because of not cooperating with regime and his teaching institution was shut down.

Molla Sirvan Ahmadi of Ghaibord of Baneh, Jame Imam of Omar Mosque in Baneh who was not agreed to hang up the Khomeini’s and basijis photos in Mosque, was imprisoned and tortured and was fired from Mosque imamship.

Molla Ebrahim Hekmat one of the instructors of Takab City was executed in 1981.

Molla Mohammad Amin, Molla Karim and Molla Mostafa from Boukan are imprisoned at the present time.

Molla Mohammad, Molla Said, Molla Rasoul and Molla Ahmad who were tortured for a long time, does not have the right to be the Imam of a Mosque.

 

 

 

 

Province of Kermanshah:

 

Molla Mohammad Zahed Chiani son of Haj Mohammad Salah Chiani, was a Mufti in the city of Poveh from the pre-revolution was fired after the revolution and deceased in 1993.

Molla Nasser Sabhani from Dorisan village of Paveh, who tried hard during the revolution, because he spoke only once in favor of Sunni people, was assaulted, imprisoned and finally executed on March 17th, 1990 at Dizelabad Dentention of Kermanshah after he had been extensively tortured.

Milla Mohammad Rahimi from Bivand village of Javanrood was imprisoned and tortured because he would not cooperate with regime to promote Shiite ideas. He is currently Jame-Imam at his village and is still under the pressure of regime.

Molla Mohammad Rabiei who was a popular Sunni clergy and Jame-imam of Kermanshah Sunni Mosque. He complaied against the Imam Ali TV series in which Sunni were assaulted. The regime’s agents killed him and his dead body was left in an area far from the city.

Molla Ghader Khanghaei from Paveh was imprisoned for two years and banned from wearing clergy cloths because of his support for more tolerant religious ideas.

Molla Ali Rashid Rahimi known as Molla Ai Kamar Taijoozi from Paveh was sentenced to 15 years of imprisonment in 1992-93 because of supporting Kurdistan Democrat Party and is in Dizelabad Detention, Kermanshah.

Molla Farid Tarifi and Molla Bahman Shekouhi were terrorized 1n 1981 in Tehran for supporting Sunni clergs.

Mohammad Rashid Toubi a member of Sunni Central Islamic Council (Shams) who escaped from the city Paveh and was assassinated in the city of Halabcheh by the regime’s agents on September 13th, 1993.

 

Province of Kurdistan (Sanandaj):

 

Molla Sayed Morad Fathi from Kamiaran was imprisoned for 10 years (1985-95) by the regime. He went to Sanandaj after his release because of regime’s pressure and assault.

Molla Sayed Borhan Husseini from Kamiaran spent many years in detention and escaped to Sanandaj. He is forbidden from religious activities.

Molla Nader Maravi from Marab of Kamiaran was teaching at religious science school who was forbidden by regime and is in his home under close watch.

Molla Sayed Latif from GolchehZamar of Ravansar had religious class but his class was closed in 1993.

Molla Sayed Mahmoud Husseini from Houyeh village residing at Sanandaj. He was teaching religious sciences and was forbidden because of discussing the Sunni issues and his class was closed. He deceased in 1997.

Molla Aboubakr from Sanandajwas teaching Sunni religious Sciences at Mosque at Ghafoor Street of Sanandaj. His classes were closed in 1985 and was detained. He has been banned from wearing clergy cloths and is now living at Sharifabad Allay of Sanandaj.

Molla Esmail who was a supporter of Molla Ahmad Moftizadeh religious group and has been banned from wearing clergy.

Molla Ebrahim, Jame imam of koonediv allay of Marvian was arrested in 1989 after his speech and sent to Clergies Council and was forbidden from Jame imamship.

Center of Religious Sciences Education, Dehrega Sheikhan Village which has been a center of Sunni education from past, has been closed by the regime and Molla Ahmad who was one of the instructors of this center is imprisoned because he did not support regime in his teaching.

Molla Khaled Rouhi son of Mahmoud (Mahmoud Siufi Karim) from Aliabad of Marivan who has studied in north Iran Hanafi clergies and got his bachelor degree in Theology was forbidden from employment by regime and is selling second hand things.

Molla Khalil Hatami from Dehgalan of Kamiaran was imam of a village. He was fired by regime in 1989 and was detained in Hamedan for four years. He is living in his village but is under constant watch.

Molla Omar Shapouri from Marivan was detained for three years has been banned from wearing clergy cloths.

Molla Ahmad Moftizadeh and Molla Nasser Sabhani who were active for the Islamic Republic establishment and encouraged the Kurdish to vote for Islamic Republic were abandoned when they refuse to promote Shiite ideas. The regime detained Molla Ahmad Moftizadeh who established a group called Qoran School which is also called Shams Council (Sunni Central Council of Moslems) for 10 years and was assaulted and tortured. He was deceased in 1985.

Molla Nasser was detained and killed after three months. Molla Nasser who was a supporter of Molla Ahmad Moftizadeh was appointed as a leader of Shams Group after Moftizadeh’s death. He was from Doorian of Paveh. After execution, his body was not delivered to his family. Two years after his execution in 1989, a grave was shown to his family at the Gharagoori Cementery.

Molla Farough Farsad one of the Sunni clergies of Sanandaj and a follower of Moftizadeh was sent to exile to Ardebil in 1989. After few years, his body was found in Ardebil. He had been tortured badly.

Molla Aboubakr Amini from Sanandaj was detained for three years and has been banned from wearing clergy cloths.

 

Sunni Clergy Council in Kurdistan:

 

Sunni Clergy Council in the Sunni settler provinces is managed by a Shiite clergy That means all the speeches to be delivered by the Sunni clergy must first be proofread by him. If a Sunni clergy talks about anything that has not been confirmed, he will be forbidden from religious teaching and Imam-ship. The following persons are forbidden from Imam-ships and have been banned from wearing clergy cloths:

 

Molla Ahmad Mostourafi from Mostourafi village of Ravansar.

Molla Abdolrahman Ravansari from Ravansar.

Molla Seyed Ghader from Khanghah.

Molla Abdolrahman Yaghoubi from Paveh.

Molla Hossein Manouchehri from Manouchehr village of Javanrood.

Molla Seifollah Manouchehri from Manouchehr village of Javanrood.

 

A list of Sunni clergies who have been prosecuted because of having

Anti-regime beliefs:

 

Molla Seifollah from Manouchehr of Javanrood.

Molla Hossein from Tazehabad of Paveh.

Molla Ahmad Bahrami from Bishtoun of Javanrood.

Molla Mansour Aghaei from Mansour Agha of Paveh.

Molla Seyed Ghader from Khaneghah of Javanrood.

Molla Abdolrahman from Ravansar.

Molla Abdolrahman Yaghoubi from Paveh.

Molla Hossein Manouchehri from Manouchehr of Javanrood.

 

Sunni Leaders in other parts of Iran:

 

Mowlavi Abdolmalek Abdolaziz one of the famous clergies in Balouchestan, Sunni authority from Zahedan, was prosecuted because of his complaints to government for the regime’s discriminatory behavior towards Sunni and thus forced to go to Pakistan and was terrorized by the Islamic Republic agents in 1998.

Dr. Mozaffarian from Shiraz who was Shiite but converted to Sunni and went to the United States. After his return to Iran he requested to build a Mosque, school of Sunni in Shiraz. He was arrested and executed in 1991 on the false charge spying for the United States.

Haji Mohammad Ziaei, Principlal of Sunni Religious School and Jame Imam of Bandar Abbass was tortured and killed by regime agents and his body was left in a.

Mowlavi Ahmad Sayed who was a clergy from the Iranian Balouchestan. He returned from Arab countries to Bandar-Abbas in 1996. He was arrested and was assassinated. His body was delivered to his family later on.

Molla Mowlavi Ebrahim Damani from Balouchestan has was arrested in 1992 because of his Sunni beliefs, he is sentenced to 17 years in prison.

Molla Mowlavi Abdolkhalegh from Zahedan was arrested in 1996 and was sentenced to three years because of his Sunni beliefs.

Molla Ahmad Rahimi, instructor of Sunni religious school of Bandar-Abbass was arrested in 1996 and was sentenced to three years because of his Sunni beliefs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Children Name Selection:

 

Kurds can not use Kurdish names for their children in the Islamic Republic of Iran. They must choose the names that regime has allowed. A special regulation has been sent to the Personal Registration Record Offices of all the cities. A copy of Abidar Newspaper is enclosed in which it has been discussed this matter further. People, who do not follow the regulations and chose other names for their children, will run into problems later on.

1- Aziz Zayeri from Ghozlou village of Afshar, wanted to register his son, Shooresh for school. The school officers did not register him because Shooresh is a Kurdish name. Therefore, he was forced to change his son’s name to Mohammad.

2- Seyed Bayazid from Lounsadat of Paveh while going to registration Records Office could not get an Identification card because Nazhvan is a Kurdish name.

Ali Rahimi residing in Bolvanava of Ghorveh, could not get Identification card for his son called Havri. He was forced to change the name to Mohammad in order to get the identity booklet.

Personal Registration Records of Baneh, does not issue the identity booklet for the names of Omar and Ayesheh.

A young boy called Khekhbat, from Paveh said that when his mother goes to the Personal Registration Record Office to get his identity booklet, the office workers did not give her the identity booklet with the name of Khehbar so she changed it to Delsooz.

 

Great Seal logo

U.S. Department of State

Iran Country Report on Human Rights Practices for 1998

Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, February 26, 1999.

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IRAN*

The Islamic Republic of Iran was established in 1979 after a populist revolution toppled the Pahlavi monarchy. The Government is dominated by Shi'a Muslim clergy. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution and functions as the Chief of State and the Commander in Chief of the armed forces. Seyed Mohammad Khatami was elected to a 4-year term as President in a popular vote in February 1997. A popularly-elected 270-seat unicameral Islamic Consultative Assembly, or Majles, develops and passes legislation. All legislation passed by the Majles is reviewed for adherence to Islamic and constitutional principles by a Council of Guardians, which consists of six clerical members, who are appointed by the Supreme Leader, and six lay jurists, who are appointed by the head of the judiciary and approved by the Majles. Candidates for most elective offices are screened carefully for their ideological beliefs by the regime. The Government seeks to conform public policy to its political and socio-religious values, in particular the tenets of Shi'a Islam, but there are serious factional differences within the leadership. The judiciary is subject to government and religious influence.

Several agencies share responsibility for internal security, including the Ministry of Intelligence and Security, the Ministry of Interior, and the Revolutionary Guards, a military force established after the revolution. Paramilitary volunteer forces known as Basijis, and gangs of street thugs, known as the Ansar-e Hezbollah (Helpers of the Party of God), who often are often aligned with specific members of the clergy, act as vigilantes. Both regular and paramilitary security forces committed numerous, serious human rights abuses.

Iran has a mixed economy. The Government owns the petroleum, banking, insurance, power, and most large-scale manufacturing industries, and controls access to foreign exchange. Large charitable foundations called bonyads, most with strong connections to the Government, control properties and businesses that were expropriated from the former Shah and figures associated with his regime. The bonyads exercise considerable influence in the economy, but do not account publicly for revenue and pay no taxes. Basic foodstuffs and energy costs are subsidized heavily by the Government. Oil exports account for nearly 80 percent of foreign exchange earnings. Economic performance is affected adversely by government mismanagement and corruption, and was made worse during the year by the low price of oil. Unemployment in 1998 was estimated to be at least 25 percent, and inflation was an estimated 25 percent.

The Government's human rights record remained poor; despite some improvements in a few areas, serious problems remain. The Government restricts citizens' right to change their government. Systematic abuses included extrajudicial killings and summary executions; disappearances; widespread use of torture and other degrading treatment; harsh prison conditions; arbitrary arrest and detention; lack of due process; unfair trials; infringement on citizens' privacy; and restrictions on freedom of speech, press, assembly, association, religion, and movement. The Government manipulates the electoral system and represses political dissidents. Increased debate in the country over President Khatami's expression of interest in promoting greater attention to the rule of law and the development of civil society led to factional struggle and occasionally to violent tactics by hard-line elements opposed to change. A trend toward greater freedom of expression and thought was reversed late in the year through arbitrary arrests, the closure of reform-oriented publications, and the murders of several dissident writers. Religious minorities, in particular Baha'is, came under increasing repression by conservative elements of the judiciary and security establishment. The Government restricts the work of human rights groups. Women face legal and social discrimination, and violence against women occurs. The Government discriminates against religious and ethnic minorities and restricts important workers' rights. Vigilante groups enforce their interpretation of appropriate social behavior through intimidation and violence.

RESPECT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS

Section 1 Respect for the Integrity of the Person, Including Freedom From:

a. Political and Other Extrajudicial Killing

U.N. representatives, including the U.N. Special Representative on Human Rights in Iran, Maurice Copithorne, and independent human rights organizations continue to note the absence of procedural safeguards in criminal trials. Inhuman punishments are used in some cases, including stoning (see Section 1.c.). In 1992 the domestic press stopped reporting most executions; however, executions appear to continue in substantial numbers. The U.N. Special Representative reported an estimated 199 executions in 1997, many of those attributable to drug convictions. Human Rights Watch reported "hundreds" of executions during the year after trials that failed to comply with minimum international standards.

Ruhollah Rouhani, a Baha'i, was executed in July after having served 9 months in solitary confinement on a charge of apostasy stemming from allegedly having converted a Muslim woman to the Baha'i faith. The woman maintained that her mother was a Baha'i and that she herself had been raised a Baha'i. Rouhani was not accorded a public trial or sentencing for his alleged crime, and no sentence was announced prior to his execution. Two other Baha'is, Sirus Zabihi-Moghaddam and Hadayat Kashefi-Najafabadi, were tried alongside Rouhani and later sentenced to death by a revolutionary court in Mashad for practicing their Baha'i faith. Their sentences were under appeal before the Supreme Court of Iran at year's end. Six Baha'is are on death row. Baha'is face severe repression, and are particularly vulnerable during times of social and political unrest (see Section 2.c.).

Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported the death in May of Ruhollah Kakhodah-Zadeh, a businessman and an active member of Tehran's small Jewish community. Kakhodah-Zadeh was hanged in prison without benefit of public charge or legal proceeding, although there were reports that he was ordered executed for helping Jews leave Iran. HRW also reported the killing of Sunni prayer leader Molavi Imam Bakhsh Narouie in the province of Sistan and Baluchistan in southeast Iran, which led to protests from members of the local Sunni community who believed that government authorities were involved in the murder (see Section 2.c.).

Prominent opposition figure Dariush Foruhar and his wife were stabbed to death at their residence in November in a manner that led many human rights observers to believe that the couple was murdered for their political beliefs. The Forouhars were under continual monitoring by state security officials. Dariush Forouhar had been active in Iran's prerevolutionary National Front Movement, and had served as labor minister in an early postrevolution government. However, since that time he had spoken out frequently against the abuse of power of the revolutionary government, in particular with respect to human rights abuses. Supreme Leader Khamanei, President Khatami, and other senior officials condemned the murders.

Several other prominent and active political dissidents also were killed late in the year. In November the body of writer and translator Majid Sharif, whose published political views included advocacy for the separation of state and religion, was discovered in a Tehran morgue several days after his mysterious disappearance. In December the body of Mohammad Mokhtari, a prominent poet and literary critic, also was discovered at a Tehran morgue after he disappeared 6 days earlier. Parviz Davani, a publisher and dissident critic of the Government, disappeared in August. Amnesty International (AI) received unconfirmed reports that Davani's mother was contacted by unnamed persons who told her that her son was killed. Mohammad Jafar Pouyandeh, a dissident writer and advocate against censorship, also disappeared in December and later was found dead. Sharif, Mokhtari, and Pouyandeh were among 134 signatories of the 1994 Declaration of Iranian Writers; several signatories have been targets of regime harassment and violence since the release of the Declaration (see Section 2.a.). The Government investigation of these murders continued at year's end.

 

Exiles and human rights monitors allege that many of those executed for criminal offenses, primarily narcotics charges, are actually political dissidents. A November 1995 law criminalized dissent and applied the death penalty to offenses such as "attempts against the security of the State, outrage against high-ranking Iranian officials, and insults against the memory of Imam Khomeini and against the Leader of the Islamic Republic." President Khatami advocated allowing criticism of the Government on several occasions throughout the year, but offered no official protection to critics. In June the daily newspaper Hamshahri reported the public hanging of four men in Ahvaz, in southern Iran, for "insulting" Supreme Leader Khamenei, and "armed robbery."

Investigations of the killing of political dissidents abroad continued during the year. The Istanbul Court of Appeal upheld the conviction of an Iranian national for complicity in the 1996 murder of Zahra Rajabi and Ali Moradi, who were both associated with the National Council of Resistance (NCR), an exile group that has claimed responsibility for several terrorist attacks within Iran. The U.N. Special Representative reported that Italian security authorities continued their investigation into the 1993 killing in Rome of Mohammad Hossein Naghdi, the NCR's representative in Italy.

The Government announced in September that it would take no action to threaten the life of British author Salman Rushdie, or anyone associated with his work, "The Satanic Verses." The announcement came during discussions with the United Kingdom regarding the restoration of full diplomatic relations. Several revolutionary foundations and a number of Majles deputies within Iran repudiated the Government's pledge and emphasized the "irrevocability" of the fatwa, or religious ruling, calling for Rushdie's murder by Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989. The 15 Khordad Foundation raised the bounty it earlier had established for the murder of Rushdie.

b. Disappearance

No reliable information is available on the number of disappearances. In the period immediately following arrest, many detainees are held incommunicado and denied access to lawyers and family members.

A Christian group reported that between 15 and 22 Iranian Christians disappeared during 1997 and the first half of 1998. Those who disappeared reportedly were Muslim converts whose baptisms had been discovered by the authorities.

There was an increase in the disappearances of prominent writers and dissident figures during the latter part of the year, many of whom were found dead (see Section 1.a.).

c. Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

There are numerous, credible reports that security forces continue to torture detainees and prisoners. Common methods include suspension for long periods in contorted positions, burning with cigarettes, and, most frequently, severe and repeated beatings with cables or other instruments on the back and on the soles of the feet. Prisoners also have reported beatings about the ears, inducing partial or complete deafness.

Stoning and flogging are expressly prescribed by the Islamic Penal Code as appropriate punishment for adultery. Article 102 of the Code states, "the stoning of an adulterer or adulteress shall be carried out while each is placed in a hole and covered with soil, he up to his waist and she up to a line above her breasts." Zoleykhah Kadkhoda, who had been arrested on charges of adultery and stoned to near death in August 1997, reportedly was released in November 1997 after widespread international criticism of the punishment.

Faraj Sarkuhi, a magazine editor critical of the government who disappeared in 1996, later reappeared and was convicted in 1997 of "spreading antigovernment propaganda" and sentenced to a year in jail. He was released in January. In April Sarkuhi was allowed to visit his family in Germany. Sarkuhi used this opportunity to describe the torture he had suffered while in detention, including repeated beatings about the head and to the feet with a wire cable. Sarkuhi spent more than 9 months in solitary confinement and was forced to admit to false charges that he was a spy of Germany and France. On one occasion, Sarkuhi reported, his torturers tied a rope around his neck to feign impending execution.

In the course of a wide-ranging Tehran municipality corruption case, which concluded in the indictment and trial of former Tehran Mayor Hossein Gholam Kharbaschi (see Section 1.e.), several defendants accused police and prison officials of using torture to coerce admissions of guilt and statements implicating the Mayor. These confessions allegedly were coerced at so-called "special detention centers" affiliated with, but outside the official prison system. Several of those tortured reportedly brought cases against the police for improper interrogation methods, and the U.N. Special Representative reported that 152 Majles deputies sent a letter to Supreme Leader Khamanei requesting a high-level inquiry into the charges, although no subsequent action apparently was taken in response. The secretary general of the Islamic Human Rights Commission, a government-affiliated body, cited the special detention centers in remarks critical of police tactics in the municipality case.

Prison conditions are harsh. Some prisoners are held in solitary confinement or denied adequate food or medical care in order to force confessions. Female prisoners reportedly have been raped or otherwise tortured while in detention. In the past, prison guards have intimidated the family members of detainees and tortured detainees in the presence of family members.

The Government does not permit visits to imprisoned dissidents by human rights monitors.

d. Arbitrary Arrest, Detention, or Exile

The Constitution prohibits arbitrary arrest and detention; however, these practices remain common. There is reportedly no legal time limit on incommunicado detention, nor any judicial means to determine the legality of detention. Suspects may be held for questioning in jails or in local Revolutionary Guard offices. Although reliable statistics are not available, international observers believe that between scores and hundreds of citizens are imprisoned for their political beliefs.

The security forces often do not inform family members of a prisoner's welfare and location. Even if these circumstances are known, the prisoner still may be denied visits by family and legal counsel. In addition, families of executed prisoners do not always receive notification of the prisoner's death. Those who do receive such information may be forced to pay the Government to retrieve the body of their relative.

At least 26 editors and writers either were detained, jailed, fined, or prohibited from publishing their writings during the year (see Section 2.a.).

Adherents of the Baha'i faith continue to face arbitrary arrest and detention. The Government appears to adhere to a practice of keeping a small number of Baha'is in detention at any given time. According to the U.N. Special Representative and Baha'i groups, at least 14 Baha'is are in prisons, including 6 men, convicted of either apostasy or "actions against God" and sentenced to death. Thirty-six Baha'is associated with the Baha'i Institute of Higher Learning were detained arbitrarily in a September government raid on offices and residences associated with the Institute (see Section 2. c.). Four of those arrested remained in custody at year's end.

The Government enforced house arrest and other measures to restrict the movements and ability to communicate of several senior religious leaders whose views on political and governance issues are at variance with the ruling orthodoxy. The clerics include Ayatollah Hassan Tabataei-Qomi, under house arrest for more than 13 years; Ayatollah Mohammad Sadeq Rowhani, under house arrest for more than 12 years; and Ayatollah Yasub al-Din Rastgari, under house arrest since late 1996. Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, the former designated successor of Iran's late Spiritual Leader, Ayatollah Khomeini, and an outspoken critic of Iran's current leader, remains under house arrest and heightened police surveillance (see Section 2.a.). Dissident clerics' followers reportedly have been detained and tortured by government authorities.

Human Rights Watch reported that in April, about 40 bazaar shopkeepers and teachers were detained for leading protests against the restrictions on Ayatollah Montazeri in his home town of Najafabad. Montazeri's son-in-law, Hadi Hashemi, was detained in May and held incommunicado. Mohammad Movahedi Savoji, the son of a Member of Parliament, also was arrested in May and sentenced to 20 months' imprisonment in September for speaking out against the harsh treatment of Ayatollah Montazeri.

In September 1994, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) issued a report on "unresolved humanitarian issues" from the Iran-Iraq war. The ICRC noted that the Iranian Government failed to identify combatants killed in action and failed to exchange information on those killed or missing. The report criticized the Government for obstructing ICRC efforts to register and repatriate prisoners of war (POW's).

Iran agreed to the release of 5,584 Iraqi POW's in April, and news organizations reported intermittent meetings throughout the remainder of the year between Iranian and Iraqi government officials toward reaching a final agreement on the remaining POW's held by each side. An Iranian government official was quoted in the press as pledging to settle the remaining POW issues with Iraq by March 1999. A June press report also described joint Iran-Iraq search operations to identify remains of those missing in action.

The Government does not use forced exile, but many dissidents leave the country because they feel threatened.

e. Denial of Fair Public Trial

The court system is not independent and is subject to government and religious influence.

There are two primary court systems: Traditional courts, which adjudicate civil and criminal offenses; and Islamic Revolutionary Courts, which were established in 1979 to try offenses including those against internal or external security, narcotics crimes, and official corruption. A special clerical court also exists to examine alleged transgressions within the clerical establishment. The Supreme Court has limited authority to review cases.

Many aspects of the prerevolutionary judicial system survive in the civil and criminal courts. For example, defendants have the right to a public trial, may choose their own lawyer, and have the right of appeal. Trials are adjudicated by panels of judges. There is no jury system. If a situation is not addressed by statutes enacted after the 1979 revolution, the Government advises judges to give precedence to their own knowledge and interpretation of Islamic law rather than rely on statutes enacted during the Shah's regime.

Trials in the Revolutionary Courts are notorious for their disregard of international standards of fairness. A law authorizes Revolutionary Court judges to act as prosecutor and judge in the same case, and judges are appointed for their ideological beliefs. Often, pretrial detention is prolonged and defendants lack access to attorneys. Indictments are often for undefined offenses such as "antirevolutionary behavior," "moral corruption," and "siding with global arrogance." Defendants do not have the right to confront their accusers. Secret or summary trials of 5 minutes are not unknown. Others are show trials intended to highlight a coerced public confession. In 1992 the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights concluded that "the chronic abuses associated with the Islamic Revolutionary Courts are so numerous and so entrenched as to be beyond reform." The Government has undertaken no major reform of the Revolutionary Court system since that report.

Much attention was focused on the fairness of the court system during the high profile trial in June of the former Mayor of Tehran, Gholam Hossein Kharbaschi, on corruption charges. Kharbaschi criticized the proceedings as unfair, in particular the conflict of interest on the part of the judge, who also served as prosecutor. Testimony offered in support of the charges against Kharbaschi reportedly was coerced from detained municipality officials under harsh treatment (see Section 1.c.).

It is difficult for many women, particularly those residing outside large cities, to obtain any legal redress. A woman's testimony is worth only half that of a man's, making it difficult for a woman to prove a case against a male defendant. In addition, the families of female victims of violent crime reportedly must pay the assailant's court costs.

The Government frequently charges members of religious minorities with crimes such as "confronting the regime" and apostasy, and conducts trials in these cases in the same manner as is reserved for threats to national security. Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi, the head of the judiciary, stated in 1996 that Baha'ism was an espionage organization. In October a Revolutionary Court in Mashad sentenced to death Sirus Zabihi-Moghaddam and Hedayat Kashefi-Nejafabadi, two Baha'is arrested in October 1997, in a secret trial on a finding of "waging war against God." A third defendant in the same trial, Ataollah Hamid-Sasirizadeh, was given a 10-year sentence. Among the charges against the defendants were "activism in the administration of the Baha'i faith; misleading Muslims; and espionage on behalf of foreign powers." The defendants were denied the right to choose their own counsel, or to consult family or coreligionists during their extended pretrial detention period.

Independent legal scholar and member of the Islamic clergy Hojatoleslam Sayyid Mohsen Saidzadeh was detained in June for his outspoken criticism of the treatment of women under the law (see Section 5). While detained prior to his appearance before the special clerical court convened to hear his case, Saeidzadeh was denied access to his lawyer, and was prevented from receiving visits from his wife and other family members. Saeidzadeh reportedly was found guilty of the charges against him, freed from detention, and barred from clerical activities for 5 years. Human Rights groups outside Iran noted reports that Saeidzadeh's sentence also included a prohibition on publishing. He had ceased authoring a monthly column on legal issues since the time of his detention.

In September authorities rearrested former deputy prime minister and longtime political dissident Abbas Amir-Entezam for comments he made questioning the legitimacy of the extended power invested in the office of Iran's Supreme Leader, and for criticizing the torture of prisoners (see Section 2.a.).

No estimates are available on the number of political prisoners. However, the Government often arrests persons on questionable criminal charges, usually drug trafficking or espionage, when their actual "offenses" are political.

f. Arbitrary Interference With Privacy, Family, Home, or Correspondence

The Constitution states that "reputation, life, property, (and) dwelling(s)" are protected from trespass except as "provided by law;" however, the Government infringes on these rights. Security forces enter homes and offices, monitor telephone conversations, and open mail without court authorization.

The Basijis, other security forces, and the Ansar-e Hezbollah monitor the social activities of citizens. Such organizations harass, beat, or arrest women whose clothing does not cover the hair and all of the body except the hands and face, or those who wear makeup. Vigilante violence may include attacking young persons believed to be too foreign in their dress or activities, invading private homes, and abusing unmarried couples. Authorities occasionally enter homes to remove television satellite dishes, or to disrupt private gatherings where unmarried men and women socialize, or where alcohol, music, or other forbidden activities are offered or take place. Enforcement appears to be very arbitrary, varying widely with the political climate and the individuals involved. There are penalties for those who do not follow the Islamic dress code at work (see Sections 5 and 6.a.).

A well-coordinated and nationwide government raid of more than 500 homes and offices owned or occupied by Baha'is suspected to have connections to the Baha'i Institute of Higher Learning took place in September, during which instructional materials, office equipment, and other items of personal property were confiscated (see Section 2.c.). The effort apparently was designed to disrupt the operation of the Institute, which serves as the only alternative source of higher education for most Baha'is, who are denied entry to the state-controlled university system.

In the past, prison guards have intimidated family members of detainees (see Section 1.c.). Iranian opposition figures living abroad have reported harassment of their relatives in Iran.

Section 2 Respect for Civil Liberties, Including:

a. Freedom of Speech and Press

The Constitution provides for freedom of the press, except when published ideas are "contrary to Islamic principles, or are detrimental to public rights;" however, in practice the Government restricts freedom of speech and of the press. The Government exerts strong control over most media, particularly publications, by, among other methods, controlling access to newsprint and to foreign exchange to purchase newsprint. The Government directly controls television and radio broadcasting networks.

Newspapers represent a wide variety of political and social perspectives, some allied with particular figures within the Government. Many subjects of discussion are tolerated, including criticism of certain government policies. However, generally prohibited materials include faultfinding comment on the personality and achievements of the late leader of the revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini; direct criticism of the Supreme Leader; assailing the principle of velayat-e faqih, or rule by a supreme religious leader; and promotion of the rights or autonomy of ethnic minorities.

Complaints against journalists, editors, and publishers frequently are levied by public officials and even rival publications. The practice of complaining against the writings of journalists crosses ideological lines. Offending writers are subject to trial, with fines, suspension from journalistic activities, lashings, and imprisonment all common punishments on findings of guilt for offenses ranging from "fabrication" to "propaganda against the State" to "insulting the leadership of the Islamic Republic."

Police frequently raid newspaper offices, and Ansar-e Hezbollah mobs continue to attack the offices of liberal publications and bookstores without interference from the police or prosecution by the courts.

The record on freedom of expression was mixed during the year. The Government took steps to encourage an environment of greater tolerance in the early part of the year. This included easing issuance of licenses for new publications, a policy that sparked a large increase in reported circulation of print media. President Khatami and others in the Government made statements indicating that criticism and debate were healthy for society, which encouraged publishers and journalists to test the bounds of expression. The ensuing public debate on a wide variety of topics quickly raised the level of concern among antireform elements, which saw the increased openness as an invitation for "disunity" and chaos in the society. Supreme Commander of the Revolutionary Guards Rahim Safavi, a vehement critic of the new openness, told a gathering of the Guards' officers in April that "we have to cut the throats of some and cut out the tongues of others," in referring to "liberals" in the society. Safavi's remarks formed part of a backlash against the limited reform measures undertaken by the Government. The judiciary took the lead in this effort, closing several publications and jailing writers and editors for overstepping the bounds of allowable expression, including Jameah, the newspaper that had printed Safavi's leaked remarks. In November judiciary head Mohammad Yazdi said that freedom of the press "should not undermine Islamic fundamentals," and that whoever criticizes the civil and criminal laws "oversteps the limits of liberty, since this legislation is inspired by Islamic sacred law."

At least 12 publications were banned or suspended during the year. In addition, at least 26 editors and writers either were detained, jailed, fined, or prohibited from publishing because of what they wrote. Following the closing of Jameah, its writers and editors began work on another reform-oriented publication, Tous, which also came under the attack of anti-reform elements. Tous was closed in September, and its editor and publisher were jailed for about a month. Authorities revoked the license of the weekly magazine Khaneh after it reportedly printed a letter from a reader harshly critical of the policies of former Supreme Leader Khomeini. During the trial of the mayor of Tehran, the offices of the publications Hamshahri, Iran, and the Iran Daily News were raided by police. Each of those publications had been supportive of the mayor in his trial on corruption charges.

The Government monitors carefully the statements and views of Iran's senior religious leaders to prevent disruptive dissent within the clerical ranks. In November 1997, Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, a cleric formerly designated as the successor to Iran's late Spiritual Leader Ayatollah Khomeini, called into question the authority of the current Supreme Leader, Ali Khamanei, criticizing his increasing intervention in government policy. The comments sparked attacks by Ansar-e Hezbollah mobs on Montazeri's residence and a Koranic school in Qom run by Montazeri. These events prompted Ebrahim Yazdi, the leader of the Iran Freedom Movement, and 54 others, to issue an open letter calling on the Government to respect Montazeri's rights. Yazdi reportedly was detained later for 11 days for his role in this protest.

Independent legal scholar and Islamic cleric Hojatoleslam Sayyid Mohsen Saidzadeh was detained in June because of his criticism of the treatment of women under the law (see Section 1.e. and 5).

In September authorities rearrested former deputy prime minister and long-time political dissident Abbas Amir-Entezam for comments he made questioning the legitimacy of the extended political power invested in the office of the Supreme Religious Leader, and for criticizing torture and mistreatment of prisoners. Amir-Entezam's comments came in the wake of the killing of the former head of Iran's prison authority, Assadullah Lajeverdi. He had been criticized by Lajeverdi family members and officials associated with the Bureau of Prisons. Amir-Entezam's attorney said that he had been charged with "making false accusations" and "insult." Amir-Entezam has spent 17 years in jail under the Islamic Republic for alleged espionage. Human Rights groups have protested the fact that he was never given a proper trial.

Further violence and harassment was directed against signatories of the 1994 Declaration of Iranian Writers, which declared a collective intent to work for the removal of barriers to freedom of thought and expression. The association of international writers, PEN, reported in October the questioning by a Revolutionary Court of signatories Mohammad Pouyandeh, Mohammad Mokhtari, Houshang Golshiri, Kazem Kardevani, and Mansour Koushan in connection with their attempts to convene a meeting of the Iran Writer's Association. Mokhtari and Pouyandeh later disappeared under suspicious circumstances, and both were found dead. Signatory Mansour Koushan reportedly fled to Norway during the year, while another signatory, Faraj Sarkuhi, was allowed to leave for Germany, where he provided reports of the mistreatment he had received while in jails in 1997 and 1998 (see Section 1.c.).

The Government owns all television and radio broadcasting facilities; programming reflects the Government's political and socio-religious ideology.

The Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance is charged with screening books prior to publication to ensure that they do not contain offensive material. However, some books and pamphlets critical of the Government are published without reprisal. The Ministry inspects foreign printed materials prior to their release on the market.

The Government effectively censors Iranian-made films, since it is the main source of funding for Iranian film producers, who must submit scripts and film proposals to government officials in advance of funding approval.

President Khatami announced in September that the Government would take no action to threaten the life of British author Salman Rushdie, or anyone associated with his work, "The Satanic Verses" (see Section 1.a). However, his remarks were repudiated by other parties, including the 15 Khordad Foundation, which claims to have financed a bounty for the murder of Rushdie.

Academic censorship persists. In his 1996 interim report, the U.N. Special Representative noted the existence of a campaign to bring about the "Islamization of the universities," which seemed to be a movement to purge persons "who fight against the sanctities of the Islamic system." Government informers who monitor classroom material are said to be common on university campuses. Admission to universities is politicized; all applicants must pass "character tests" in which officials screen out applicants critical of the Government's ideology. To achieve tenure, professors must cooperate with government authorities over a period of years.

b. Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association

The Constitution permits assemblies and marches "provided they do not violate the principles of Islam;" however, in practice the Government restricts freedom of assembly and closely monitors gatherings to ensure that they do not constitute uncontrolled anti-government protest. This includes funeral processions and Friday prayer gatherings. Many instances were reported during the year of Ansar-e Hezbollah disruptions of gatherings of university students and other groups. Police and military forces often do not intervene in these cases. In one such incident in September, Ansar-e Hezbollah thugs attacked Vice President Abdollah Nuri and Culture Minister Attaollah Mohajerani, who are both closely associated with President Khatami's reform program, during a Friday prayer gathering in Tehran. Authorities sought to break up spontaneous celebrations that followed Iran's qualification for the World Cup soccer finals because the celebrations featured male-female commingling and flaunting of the Islamic dress code by women.

The Government limits the freedom of association. The Constitution provides for the establishment of political parties, professional associations, and religious groups provided that they do not violate the principles of "freedom, sovereignty, and national unity," or question Islam or the Islamic Republic. Several new political parties were established and registered with the Government during the year. However, several other applications were rejected.

The U.N. Special Representative noted in his October report that elections for the leadership of the Iran Bar Association took place in December 1997, with candidates required by the government to meet certain qualifications. The Bar Association was reported in August to have sent a letter to the Minister of Justice detailing its recommendations for improvement of the court system.

c. Freedom of Religion

The Government restricts freedom of religion. The 1979 revolution resulted in the creation of an Islamic Republic, the central feature of which is rule by a "religious jurisconsult." Its senior leadership, including the Spiritual Leader of the Revolution, the President, the head of the judiciary, and the Speaker of the Majles, is composed principally of Shi'a clergymen. The Constitution declares that the "official religion of Iran is Islam and the sect followed is Ja'fari Shi'ism." It also states that "other Islamic denominations shall enjoy complete respect," and recognizes Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians as "protected religious minorities." Religions not specifically protected under the Constitution do not enjoy freedom of activity. This most directly affects the nearly 350,000 followers of the Baha'i faith, who effectively enjoy no legal rights in the society. In addition, the Government is highly suspicious of the proselytizing of Muslims by non-Muslims and may be harsh in meting out its response, in particular against Baha'is and evangelical Christians.

Approximately 90 percent of the population are Shi'a Muslims. Aside from slightly over 1 percent who are not Muslims, the rest of the population are Sunni Muslims, drawn largely from Kurdish, Arab, Turkoman, Baluchi, and other ethnic minorities.

Human Rights Watch reported the killing of Sunni prayer leader Molavi Imam Bakhsh Narouie in the province of Sistan and Baluchistan in southeast Iran, leading to protests by members of the local community who believed that authorities were involved in the murder.

Majdhub Alishahi, an adherent of the Sufi tradition, reportedly was executed on charges of adultery and homosexuality after a coerced confession in 1996. Sufi organizations outside Iran reported an increasing level of repression by the authorities of Sufi religious practices.

Religious activity is closely monitored by the Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance; non-Muslim religious activities often require the approval of or licensing by the Ministry. Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrians legally are permitted to practice their religion and instruct their children, but may not proselytize Muslims. The Government interferes with the administration of their schools, and harassment by government officials is common (see Section 5).

Oppression of evangelical Christians continued during the year. Christian groups reported instances of government harassment of churchgoers in Tehran, in particular against worshipers at the Assembly of God congregation in Tehran. Instances of harassment cited included conspicuous monitoring by authorities outside Christian premises to discourage Muslims or converts from entering, and entry to the church premises by armed Revolutionary Guards who subsequently demanded identity papers of worshipers inside. Christian church leaders are also subject to pressure from government authorities to sign pledges that they would not evangelize Muslims or allow Muslims to attend church services. Iranian Christians International (ICI) detailed the cases of Alireza and Mahboobeh Mahmoudian, converts to Christianity and lay leaders of the Saint Simon the Zealot Osgofi Church in Shiraz, who were forced to leave Iran permanently in June after continued harassment by government authorities. The ICI reported that Alireza Mahmoudian had lost his job because of his conversion and had been repeatedly beaten by Basiji and Ansar-e Hizbollah thugs on orders from Ministry of Islamic Guidance officials. His wife, Mahboobeh, also had been the subject of intimidation, principally through frequent and aggressive interrogation by government officials.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported the death in May of Jewish businessman Ruhollah Kakhodah-Zadeh, who was hanged in prison without a public charge or legal proceeding (see Section 1.a.). While Jews are a recognized religious minority in Iran, allegations of official discrimination are frequent. Jewish leaders in Iran reportedly are reluctant to draw attention to official mistreatment of their community due to fear of government reprisal.

The year was particularly difficult year the Baha'i community. The Government regards the Baha'i community of 300,000 to 350,000 members, whose faith originally derives from a strand of Islam, as a "misguided" or "wayward" sect. The Special Representative noted in his September report that pressures on Baha'is from the judiciary apparently increased during the year. The execution of Ruhollah Rouhani and the death sentences confirmed against two other Bahai's in Mashad (see Section 1.a.), along with the arbitrary roundup of students and faculty associated with the Baha'i Institute of Higher Learning, marked a renewed level of persecution and state-directed intimidation of a community that is always at risk, but particularly so during times of political ferment.

Baha'is may not teach or practice their faith or maintain links with coreligionists abroad. The fact that the Baha'i world headquarters (established by the founder of the Baha'i faith in the 19th century in what was then Ottoman-controlled Palestine) is situated in what is now the state of Israel exposes Iranian Baha'is to government charges of "espionage on behalf of Zionism," in particular when caught communicating with or addressing contributions to Baha'i administrative headquarters.

Broad restrictions on Baha'is appear to be geared to destroying them as a community (see Section 5). Baha'i marriages are not recognized by the Government, leaving Baha'i women open to charges of prostitution. Children of Baha'i marriages are not recognized as legitimate and, therefore, are denied inheritance rights. Sacred and historical Baha'i properties have been confiscated systematically. Baha'is are not allowed to bury and honor their dead in keeping with their religious tradition, while historic Baha'i gravesites have been confiscated, and in many cases desecrated or destroyed. In October three Bahai's were arrested in Damavand, a city north of Tehran, on the grounds that they had buried their dead without government authorization.

Group meetings and religious education, which often take place in private homes and offices, are curtailed severely. Public and private universities continue to deny admittance to Baha'i students, a particularly demoralizing blow to a community that traditionally has placed a high value on education. Denial of access to higher education appears aimed at the eventual impoverishment of the Baha'i community. In September authorities launched a nationwide operation to disrupt the activities of the Baha'i Institute of Higher Learning, also known as the "Open University," established by the Baha'i community shortly after the revolution to offer higher educational opportunities to Baha'i students who had been denied access to high schools and universities. The Institute employed Baha'i faculty and professors, many of whom had been dismissed from teaching positions by the Government as a result of their Baha'i faith, and conducted classes in homes or offices owned or rented by Baha'is. In the assault, which took place in at least 14 different cities, 36 faculty members were arrested, and a variety of personal property, including books, papers, and furniture, were either destroyed or confiscated. Government interrogators sought to force the detained faculty members to sign statements acknowledging that the Open University was now defunct and pledging not to collaborate with it in the future. Baha'is outside Iran report that none of the 36 would sign the document. Four of those arrested in September remained in custody at year's end.

The Government appears to adhere to a practice of keeping a small number of Baha'is in arbitrary detention, some at risk of execution, at any given time (see also Section 1.d.). There were 14 Baha'is reported to be under arrest for practice of their faith at year's end, 6 under sentence of death (see Section 1.a.). Baha'is regularly are denied compensation for injury or criminal victimization. Government authorities claim that only Muslim plaintiffs are eligible for compensation in these circumstances. Baha'is are prohibited from government employment. A 1993 law prohibits government workers from membership in groups that deny the "divine religions," terminology the Government uses to label members of the Baha'i faith. The law also stipulates penalties for government workers who do not observe "Islamic principles and rules."

The Government restricts the movement of several senior religious leaders, some of whom have been under house arrest for years (see Sections 1.d. and 2.d.), and often charges members of religious minorities with crimes such as drug offenses, "confronting the regime," and apostasy (see Section 1.e.).

d. Freedom of Movement Within the Country, Foreign Travel, Emigration, and Repatriation

The Government places some restrictions on these rights. Citizens may travel to any part of the country, although there have been restrictions on travel to Kurdish areas during times of occasional heavy fighting. Citizens may change their place of residence without obtaining official permission. The Government requires exit permits (a validation stamp placed in the traveler's passport) for draft-age males and citizens who are politically suspect. Some citizens, particularly those whose skills are in short supply and who were educated at government expense, must post bonds to obtain exit permits. The Government restricts the movement of several religious leaders (see Sections 1.d., and 2.c.).

Citizens returning from abroad are sometimes subject to search and extensive questioning by government authorities for evidence of antiregime activities abroad. Cassette tapes, printed material, and personal correspondence and photographs are subject to confiscation. Such actions reportedly increased late in the year as authorities noted the increased activity of dissident groups outside the country.

The Government permits Jews to travel abroad, but often denies them the multiple-exit permits normally issued to other citizens. The Government normally does not permit all members of a Jewish family to travel abroad at the same time. Baha'is often experience difficulty getting passports. Iranian women must obtain the permission of their husband, father, or other living male relative in order to obtain a passport for travel abroad.

The law contains provisions for granting refugee status in accordance with the 1951 U.N. Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Protocol. The Government generally cooperates with the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other humanitarian organizations in assisting refugees. Although the Government generally provides first asylum, pressure was applied on some refugees to force them to return to their home countries.

The country hosts a very large refugee population. The Government and the UNHCR estimate that there are approximately 1.4 million Afghan refugees in the country. Of this total, about 21,200 are accommodated in refugee camps administered by the Government. The rest subsist on itinerant labor, often moving from place to place within the country. As of September, the UNHCR estimated that 1,525 Afghans refugees were repatriated to Afghanistan during the year, continuing the low trend of recent years. There were reports in December that the Government forcibly repatriated Afghan refugees, although the lack of a UNHCR presence in Afghanistan due to continued instability in that country made these reports difficult to verify.

The UNHCR estimates that there are about 580,000 Iraqi Kurdish and Arab refugees in Iran, and reported 9,232 returnees to Iraq during the year, through September.

Section 3 Respect for Political Rights: The Right of Citizens to Change Their Government

The right of citizens to change their government is severely compromised. The Supreme Leader, the recognized Head of State, is selected for a life term by the popularly-elected Assembly of Experts. The Assembly itself is restricted to clerics. The Government effectively manipulates the electoral system to its advantage. There is no separation of state and religion, and clerics dominate the Government. The Government represses any movement seeking to separate state and religion, or to alter the State's existing theocratic foundation. The selection of candidates for elections is effectively controlled by the ruling clerics.

The Constitution provides for a Council of Guardians composed of six Islamic clergymen and six lay members who review all laws for consistency with Islamic law and the Constitution. The Council also screens political candidates for ideological, political, and religious suitability. It accepts only candidates who support a theocratic state; clerics who disagree with government policies also have been disqualified.

Regularly scheduled elections are held for the President, members of the Majles, and members of the Assembly of Experts, a body responsible for selecting the successor to the Supreme Leader.

Seyed Mohammad Khatami was elected President in May 1997. The Interior Ministry estimated that over 90 percent of the eligible population voted in the presidential election. During the campaign, there was considerable government intervention and censorship. The Council of Guardians reviewed 238 candidates, including a woman, but only allowed 4 individuals to run. Three were clerics; all were men. Khatami garnered nearly 70 percent of the vote, his greatest support coming from the middle class, youth, minorities, and women.

The election results were particularly notable because Khatami was not the regime's preferred candidate. In a break with precedent, Supreme Leader Khamenei let it be known that he preferred Majles Speaker Ali Akbar Nateq-Nuri. Prayer leaders also supported Nateq-Nuri in their sermons. The regime attempted to censor public debate by restricting the campaign coverage of some technocratic and modern left publications, particularly the pro-Khatami daily, Salam. As the election neared, Khatami was evicted from his campaign headquarters. Despite the regime's clear preference for Nateq-Nuri, the election results were not disputed, and the regime does not appear to have engaged in election fraud--possibly due to Khatami's early and overwhelming lead. The results appear to indicate that citizens demanded change within the limits allowed by government control of the electoral process.

The Government in 1997 nullified election results from the spring 1996 Majles elections in several districts, including Malayer, Astara, and Esfahan.

Elections were held in the fall for the 86-member Assembly of Experts. The Council of Guardians disqualified numerous candidates, leading to criticism from many observers that the Government improperly pre-determined the election results.

Preparations were begun late in the year for the election of local councils throughout the country, the first such elections since the 1979 revolution. Vigorous parliamentary debates take place on various issues. Most deputies are associated with powerful political and religious officials, but often vote independently and shift from one faction to another.

Women are underrepresented in government. They hold only 13 of 270 Majles seats, and there are no female cabinet members. In 1997 President Khatami appointed the first female vice president (for environmental protection) since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Masoumeh Ebtekar, following his in inauguration. Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Ataollah Mohajerani appointed a second woman to a senior post, Azam Nouri, when he chose her in 1997 as his deputy. A woman was also appointed as a district mayor of Tehran. President Khatami also appointed a woman to serve as Presidential Adviser for Women's Affairs. A small number of women serve in the judiciary as advisers but not fully enabled judges; their authority is limited principally to family law cases.

Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrians elect deputies to specially reserved Majles seats. However, the UN Special Representative noted in his September report frequent assertions that religious minorities are, by law and practice, barred from being elected to a representative body (except to the seats in the Majles reserved for minorities), and from holding senior government or military positions. Religious minorities are allowed to vote, but they may not run for president.

Section 4 Governmental Attitude Regarding International and Nongovernmental Investigation of Alleged Violations of Human Rights

The Government continued to restrict the work of local human rights groups. The Government denies the universality of human rights and has stated that human rights issues should be viewed in the context of a country's "culture and beliefs."

International human rights NGO's, such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, are not allowed to establish offices or conduct regular investigative visits to Iran.

The ICRC and the UNHCR both operate in the country. However, the Government did not allow U.N. Special Representative for Human Rights in Iran, Maurice Copithorne, to visit the country during the year, and complained that his annual report to the U.N. Human Rights Commission was biased and reflected "an absence of accurate understanding of Islamic norms." Copithorne was last allowed entry to Iran to gather information for his yearly report in 1996. In his September report, he noted his concern about the infrequency of even written communication from the Government in response to his inquiries regarding specific cases. U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson visited Iran in February to inaugurate a conference on Asian human rights issues. She reportedly had received assurances from the Government that Special Representative Copithorne would be allowed to visit later in the year, but this never occurred.

The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) was established in 1995 under the authority of the Head of the Judiciary, who sits on its Board as an observer. In 1996 the Government established a human rights committee in the Majles. Most observers believe these bodies lack independence. The U.N. Special Representative cited press reports that the IHRC fielded 2,450 complaints from March 1997 through March 1998, half from women and 50 percent against the police. The Secretary General of the IHRC, Mohammad Ziaei-Far, reportedly complained about the use by police of "special detention centers" to conduct coercive interrogations of detainees (see Section 1.c.) and acknowledged widespread human rights violations.

Section 5 Discrimination Based on Race, Sex, Religion, Disability, Language, or Social Status

In general the Government does not discriminate on the basis of race, disability, language, or social status. The Government does discriminate on the basis of religion and sex.

Women

Although domestic violence is known to occur, little is known about its extent. Abuse in the family is considered a private matter and is seldom discussed publicly. There are no official statistics on the subject.

Women have access to primary and advanced education, but social and legal constraints tend to inhibit their professional opportunities. The state enforces gender segregation in most public spaces. While the enforcement of conservative Islamic dress codes has varied with the political climate since the death of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989, the fact remains that what women wear in public is not entirely a matter of personal choice. Women are subject to harassment by the authorities if their dress or behavior is considered inappropriate, and may be sentenced to flogging or imprisonment for such violations. In April a girl detained by authorities on suspicion of having an inappropriate relationship with a man reportedly committed suicide in detention. The Majles passed a law in April restricting the publication of pictures of women in the Iranian print media, including pictures of foreign women, unless fully covered as prescribed by the Islamic dress code. There are penalties for failure to observe Islamic dress codes at work (see Section 6.a.).

Discrimination against women is reinforced by law through provisions of the Islamic Civil and Penal Codes, in particular those sections dealing with family and property law. The Majles approved a bill in April mandating segregation of the sexes in the provision of medical care. The bill provided for women to be treated only by female physicians and men by male physicians and raised questions about the quality of care that women could receive under such a regime, considering the current imbalance between the number of trained and licensed male and female physicians and specialists. Upon first review, the Council of Guardians rejected the law pending an amendment to assure funding, but approved it in a subsequent review in November.

The minimum legal age of marriage for women is 9, although marriage at that age is rare. All women, no matter the age, must have the permission of the father or a living male relative in order to get married. The law allows for the practice of Siqeh, or temporary marriage, a Shi'a custom in which a woman or a girl can become the wife of a married or single Muslim male after a simple and brief religious ceremony. The Siqeh marriage can last for a night or as little as 30 minutes. The bond is not recorded on identification documents, and according to Islamic law, men may have as many Siqeh wives as they wish, although these wives are not granted rights associated with traditional marriage.

The Penal Code includes provisions that mandate the stoning of women and men convicted of adultery (see Section 1.c.). Under legislation passed in 1983, women have the right to divorce, and regulations promulgated in 1984 substantially broadened the grounds on which a woman may seek a divorce. However, a husband is not required to cite a reason for divorcing his wife. In 1986 the Government issued a 12-point "contract" to serve as a model for marriage and divorce that limits the privileges accorded to men by custom and traditional interpretations of Islamic law. The model contract also recognized a divorced woman's right to a share in the property that couples acquire during their marriage, and to increased alimony rights. In November the Majles passed a law granting custody of minor children to the mother in certain divorce cases when the father was proven unfit to care for the child. Women who remarry are forced to give up to their father custody of children from earlier marriages. Muslim women may not marry non-Muslim men. The testimony of a woman is worth only half that of a man's in court (see Section 1.e.).

Children

Most children have access to education through the 12th grade, and to some form of health care. There is no known pattern of child abuse.

People With Disabilities

There is no available information regarding whether the Government has legislated or otherwise mandated accessibility for the disabled. However, the Cable News Network (CNN) reported in 1996 on the harsh conditions in an institution for retarded children who had been abandoned by their parents. Film clips showed children tied or chained to their beds, in filthy conditions, and without appropriate care. It is not known to what extent this represents the typical treatment of the disabled in Iran.

Religious Minorities

The Christian, Jewish, Zoroastrian, and Baha'i minorities suffer varying degrees of officially sanctioned discrimination, particularly in the areas of employment, education, and public accommodations (see Section 2.d.). For example, members of religious minorities are barred from becoming school principals. Muslims who convert to Christianity also suffer discrimination. Apostasy, or conversion from Islam to another religion, may be punishable by death.

University applicants are required to pass an examination in Islamic theology. Although public-school students receive instruction in Islam, this requirement limits the access of most religious minorities to higher education. Applicants for public-sector employment are screened in similar fashion for their adherence to Islam.

Religious minorities suffer discrimination in the legal system, receiving lower awards in injury and death lawsuits, and incurring heavier punishments than Muslims. Sunni Muslims encounter religious discrimination at the local level, and reports of discrimination against practitioners of the Sufi tradition surfaced during the year. Muslim men are free to marry non-Muslim women, but marriages between Muslim women and non-Muslim men are not recognized.

In 1993 the U.N. Special Representative reported the existence of a government policy directive on the Baha'is. According to the directive, the Supreme Revolutionary Council instructed government agencies to block the progress and development of the Baha'i community, expel Baha'i students from universities, cut the Baha'is' links with groups outside Iran, restrict the employment of Baha'is, and deny Baha'is "positions of influence," including those in education. The Government claims that the directive is a forgery. However, it appears to be an accurate reflection of current government practice.

Property belonging to the Baha'i community as a whole, such as places of worship, remains confiscated. Baha'i graveyards have been confiscated and defiled. Other government restrictions have been eased; Baha'is currently may obtain food ration booklets and send their children to public schools. However, the prohibition against the admission of Baha'is to universities remains. Thousands of Baha'is who were dismissed from government jobs in the early 1980's receive no unemployment benefits and have been required to repay the Government for salaries or pensions received from the first day of employment. Those unable to do so face prison sentences (see Sections 1.d. and 2.c.).

National/Racial/Ethnic Minorities

The Kurds seek greater autonomy from the central Government and continue to suffer from government discrimination. The Kurds' status as Sunni Muslims serves as an aggravating factor in their relations with the Shi'a-dominated government. Kurds often are suspected of harboring separatist or foreign sympathies by government authorities. Human Rights Watch reported in September 1997 that in the wake of the Gulf War and the creation of an autonomous Kurdish zone in northern Iraq, Iranian authorities increased their military presence in Kurdish areas of Iran, which often led to human rights abuses against Kurds. Abuses included destruction of villages, forced migrations, and widespread mining of Kurdish property.

Azeris are well integrated into the Government and society, but complain of ethnic and linguistic discrimination. The Government traditionally has viewed Azeri nationalism as threatening.

Section 6 Worker Rights

a. The Right of Association

Although the Labor Code grants workers the right to establish unions, there are no independent unions. A national organization known as the Worker's House, founded in 1982, is the sole authorized national labor organization. It serves primarily as a conduit for the Government to exert control over workers. The leadership of the Worker's House coordinates activities with Islamic labor councils, which are organized in many enterprises. These councils also function as instruments of government control, although they frequently have been able to block layoffs and dismissals. Moreover, a network of government-backed guilds issues vocational licenses, funds financial cooperatives, and helps workers find jobs.

The Government does not tolerate any strike deemed to be at odds with its economic and labor policies. In 1993 the Parliament passed a law that prohibits strikes by government workers. It also prohibits government workers from having contacts with foreigners and stipulates penalties for failure to observe Islamic dress codes and principles at work.

There are no known affiliations with international labor organizations.

b. The Right to Organize and Bargain Collectively

Workers do not have the right to organize independently and negotiate collective bargaining agreements. No information is available on mechanisms used to set wages.

It is not known whether labor legislation and practice in the export processing zones differ from the law and practice in the rest of the country.

c. Prohibition of Forced or Compulsory Labor

The Penal Code provides that the Government may require any person who does not have work to take suitable employment. This provision has been criticized frequently by the International Labor Organization (ILO) as contravening ILO Convention 29 on forced labor. There is no information available on the Government's policy on forced and bonded labor by children.

d. Status of Child Labor Practices and Minimum Age for Employment

The Labor Law prohibits employment of minors under 15 years of age and places special restrictions on the employment of minors under age 18. Education is compulsory until age 11. The law permits children to work in agriculture, domestic service, and some small businesses. By law women and minors may not be employed in hard labor or, in general, in night work. Information on the extent to which these regulations are enforced is not available. There is no information available on the Government's policy on forced and bonded labor by children (see Section 6.c.).

e. Acceptable Conditions of Work

The Labor Code empowers the Supreme Labor Council to establish annual minimum wage levels for each industrial sector and region. It is not known if the minimum wages are adjusted annually or enforced. The Labor Code stipulates that the minimum wage should be sufficient to meet the living expenses of a family and should take inflation into account. Under current poor economic conditions, many middle-class citizens must work two or even three jobs to support their families. The daily minimum wage was raised in March 1997 to $2.80 (8,500 rials). This wage apparently is not sufficient to provide a decent standard of living for a worker and family. Information on the share of the working population covered by minimum wage legislation is not available.

The Labor Code establishes a 6-day workweek of 48 hours maximum, with 1 weekly rest day, normally Fridays, and at least 12 days of paid annual leave and several paid public holidays.

According to the Labor Code, a Supreme Safety Council, chaired by the Labor Minister or his representative, is responsible for promoting workplace safety and health. The Council reportedly has issued 28 safety directives, and oversees the activities of 3,000 safety committees established in enterprises employing more than 10 persons. It is not known how well the Ministry's inspectors enforce regulations. It is not known whether workers can remove themselves from hazardous situations without risking the loss of employment.

----------------------

*The United States does not have an embassy in Iran. This report draws heavily on non-U.S. Government sources.

[end of document]

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Human Rights Violations against the Kurds in Iran

 

Kurdish Population:

 

The Iranian Kurdistan, 125,000 Square Kilometers, had an estimated total population of about 8 million in 1991. Most of the population is concentrated in the provinces of Kermanshah, Iyllam, West Azerbaijan and Kurdistan.

There are many different figures from a variety of sources about the Iranian Kurdish population, however the authenticity of them remains to be determined. The government does not officially make a distinction between the different religion sects (Shiites and Sunni) and the different nationalities (Kurds, Fars, Azeri and etc) in official enumeration. On the other hand, because of the government’s unpopularity in Kurdistan, Kurdish people do not willingly give an exact account about themselves.

According to the last official central enumeration in 1991, the Iranian Kurdistan, the mentioned four provinces, had a total population of 6,132,754. Of this population, 1,778,596 people resided in Kermanshah; 2,519,889 lived in West-Azerbaijan; 487,886 were in Iyllam and 1,346,382 resided in Kurdistan. The estimated non-Kurdish peoples such as Azeri in Kurdistan was 20% of the total population. Therefore, the population of Kurdish people in Kurdistan was estimated to be around 5 million in 1991.

The number of Kurds that live outside of the Kurdish region is estimated to be roughly 2 to 3 million. The Safavee and Nader-Shah dynasties forcefully evacuated and settled many Kurds in different parts of Iran, particularly in the province of Khorasan. Equally significant, over the years, voluntary migration in search of jobs and better living conditions has helped to scatter the Kurds throughout the country.

Religion

Approximately 98% of the people in Kurdistan are Muslims. The remaining people are devout followers of different religious backgrounds such as Christians, Jews, Angel believers and Azores. About 75% of the Kurdish Muslims adhere to the Sunni sect and 25% of them adhere to the Shiite sect who reside mainly in the province of Kermanshah.

 

Source of Income

 

The region has many important natural sources including crude oil reserves, which are mainly undeveloped, along with water and minerals. Agriculture, livestock and hard labor are the chief occupations in Kurdistan.

The following table is the most current list of total Kurdish people in Kurdish region that have steady jobs in different sectors. The government sponsors the departments marked with asterisk.

 

 

Level of Employment

 

 

 

West Azerbaijan

Iyllam

Kermanshah

Kurdistan

Agriculture, Fishery, Hunting and Forestry

178,116

28,293

77,071

105,578

Mining*

181

7

133

312

Industry

33,032

2,185

1,672

10,464

Construction

63,518

8,083

38,825

3,896

Retail & Hotel

3,345

3,340

23,176

7,943

Transportation & Communication

1,990

2,714

16,512

7,943

Insurance

2,411

324

2,036

872

Social Services

112,367

21,383

98,638

45,748

Hydro *

1,600

349

1,520

892

Technical, Specialized and Scientific

33,658

5,934

22,992

14,773

Management *

1,128

285

790

433

Administration

86,331

2,480

9,205

4,296

Trade

27,847

3,072

20,430

12,907

Miscellaneous Services

16,091

2,663

8,871

7,128

Hard Labor (PORTERS)

127,369

15,321

82,998

62,947

Health Care *

6,678

1,996

5,495

3,764

-Medical*

pharmaceutical*

Administration*

454

3,948

2,276

151

915

930

329

3,110

2,056

283

1,856

1,625

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Education, Job Distribution and Consequences

 

There are two classes of educated Kurdish people in Kurdistan. Those with a close and collaborating relationship with the central government are heavily favored for "good" jobs. This group of people is certain to have management positions and therefore stay in the country.

The Kurds who openly oppose the regime’s policies are deprived of any and all citizen’s rights. Kurdish students who have graduated from school with self-affiliations to opposition parties (or if any of their family members are linked to them) are scrutinized, investigated and prevented from receiving employment opportunities anywhere. Consequently, most of them become refugees and finally immigrate to a third country by various means.

Kurdish students are not allowed to wear Kurdish clothes or listen to Kurdish music in private or public schools. Sunni Kurdish students are dismissed from schools for regular compulsory Friday prayer. The Islamic regime intends to widen the apparent gap between the Shiites and Sunni students. If the Islamic regime has been able to stay in power for 20 years is because it has been able to make people to view each other with suspicion and hostility.

The Kurds who adhere to Sunni branch of Islam do not have jobs with decision-making responsibilities. On the other hand, a handful of Kurds from the Shiites branch does have important ministerial positions. Bijan Namdar Zanganeh from Kermanshah’s Shiites Kurds is the current Minister of Oil, Mortaza Zarrin Gol is the Oil Commissioner for the current parliament and Abdullah Ramazanzadeh is the Premier of the province of Kurdistan.

 

Kurdish Language

 

 

Kurdish language is not taught officially in any schools at any level in Kurdistan. People are free to speak the language amongst themselves. However, language is outlawed in judiciary settings, classrooms and government offices throughout the country.

Newspapers and Magazines in Kurdistan

"Sirvan" is a weekly journal published in the city of Senandej, the capital city of Kurdistan. The content of the journal is mostly in Persian; however, a small portion of it is also in Kurdish. "Serveh" is a magazine published monthly in both the Kurdish and Persian languages. The editorial page of this magazine is in the Persian language while the articles are in Kurdish. In the last 10 years the government has published 155 volumes of "Serveh". It is printed in the City of Uremia, the capital city of West Azerbaijan.

 

 

 

 

Radio and Television Stations

There is no television or radio station entirely devoted to Kurdish programs. All the channels that broadcast Kurdish programming are meticulously observed and controlled by the government authorities and exclusively managed by non-Kurd employees. The majority of the programs are the direct translation of the Persian programs. The airtime, for Kurdish programs, is drastically shorter compared to the airtime received when the Shah was in power.

 

Station

City

Day

Airtime

TV

Kermanshah

Every Friday

2 Hours

TV

Sanendaj

Daily

15 Minutes

TV

Mahabad

Daily

30 Minutes

TV

Iyllam

Every Friday

2 Hours

Radio

Kermanshah

Daily

30 Minutes

Radio

Sanendaj

Daily

90 Minutes

Radio

Mahabad

Daily

2 Hours

Radio

Uremia

Daily

75 Minutes

Radio

Iyllam

Daily

30 Minutes

 

The Relationship

 

The hostile relationship between the central government of Iran and the Kurdish people is over one hundred years old. There has never been a period of time with any reasonable mutual understanding between the representative of the central government and the Kurds about the Kurdish issue. The previous monarchy regimes and the current Islamic government have ignored the Kurds categorically. Kurdish language has always been banned officially throughout the country. Kurds have never been trusted or consulted for any public issues by any central or provincial government. Instead, the Kurdish leaders have been arrested, tortured, assassinated and hanged by all the central governments in Iran for more over a century.

Jafar Agha, a Kurdish leader, who successfully resisted the government’s authority, was invited to Tabriz for a supposed reconciliation talk in 1905. He was then deceived and killed by the Qajar government. Kurdish leaders have continued to be deceived by the government and regrettably continue to fall victim to Jafar Agha’s mistake till the present time. Jafar Agha’s brother, Ismail, nicknamed Simko, took his place as the leader of the Kurds in Northwestern Iran and then was assassinated by Pahlavi’s government in 1930 in the city of Oshenavih.

 

 

Republic of Mahabad

 

In 1941 Britain and the USSR partitioned Iran into two zones in order to prevent the country from entering the WWII to support Germany. The USSR had a working relationship with the Kurds within its zone. On January 22, 1946, Qazi Mohammed, general secretary of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI), proclaimed the republic of Kurdistan. The republic lasted for 11 months. Following a pact signed by the Iranian central government and the USSR, the Iranian army launched a vast offense in the region thus destroying the republic in December 1946.

During the republic time, the Kurdish nation was free to administer and conduct its own affairs in its territory. People had democracy and freedom of expression. Kurdish replaced Persian as the official language. During the autonomous time, "Kurdistan", a Kurdish newspaper, "Kurdistan" and "Havari Nishtiman", two Kurdish magazines, "Halaleh", a magazine for Youth and "Gerogali Mendalan" for kids were regularly published in different cities in Kurdistan.

The Republic collapsed and as a result a great number of DPIK leaders were then captured and imprisoned. There were many summary executions in many cities in Kurdistan. Qazi Mohammed (Head of the Party and President of the Republic), Saffee Qazi and Sader Qazi were hanged in the capital of the republic in April 1947. With that, Kurdish nationality and culture, which had briefly prospered were suppressed again to this very date.

 

Post-Revolution Era

 

After the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, the newly established government was eager to assert its control over Kurdistan. The Army and Revolutionary Guards occupied the cities and towns throughout Kurdistan. This time however, the Kurds did not stand by and tolerate the regime’s oppression silently. The authorities in Iran were not ready to accept and recognize the justified political, economical, social and educational rights of the Kurds. The pioneer leader of the Islamic regime, Ayatollah Khomani, denounced the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (DPKI) an anti-Islamic party and declared holy war on the Kurds in April 1979. The Iranian army (Division 28 of Sanandej) crushed people in Sanandej and killed in thousands in February 1979. On mid February of the same year, the army (Division 64 of Uremia) killed many people in a middle of a peaceful meeting between the representative of the Turks and Kurds in the city of Naghadeh in the province of west Azerbaijan. After a three-month long battle between the Army and the Kurdish people from all over Kurdistan, led by PDKI, the government agreed to a cease-fire in November 1979. Ayatollah Khomeni in a message to Kurdish people officially announced a tentative autonomy in Kurdistan.

The temporary government of Mehdi Bazargan initiated negotiations immediately by sending a high level delegation to Kurdistan. The government delegation was made up of Daryoush Feroher, Azatollah Sahabi and Hashem Sabaghian. The Kurdish delegation led by PDKI and presided by Shaik Azaddin Hosseini also included Komeleh and Cherick (Kurdistan Branch) parties. The presidency of Daryoush Feroher over the government's delegation for the issue was dismissed after Ayatollah Khomeni denounced the government of Bazargan in 1980. Many (Including PDKI) still believe that Daryoush Feroher’s dismissal was directly related to his dedication to a peaceful and justified solution for the Kurds.

After many meetings between the representatives from both sides, the Islamic government did not agree to any form of autonomy in Kurdistan after all. The new government in Iran was only buying time to reaffirm its position in Kurdistan and to have a better control over its re-organized post-revolution army. It did not engage in sincere and constructive discussions for a meaningful solution for the issue. Mutual distrust grow wider and eventually an unjustified war on a massive scale was imposed on the Kurdish people in April 1980 once again.

Thousands of armed Kurds took to the mountains. They have engaged the army and the Islamic guards in guerrilla warfare for 20 years. Until the present date, more than 30,000 of civilian innocent Kurdish people, 4,000 Peshmargeh (PDKI members) and many more from other political parties in Kurdistan have been killed, thousands wounded and many more have taken refuge in different countries.

On 13 July 1989, Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou, Secretary-general of the DPIK, and two of his collaborators, were assassinated in Vienna, Austria, as they were negotiating with envoys of the Iranian regime, at the latter’s invitation, for a peaceful solution to the Kurdish issue in Iran. Dr.Ghassemlou’s successor, Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi met with the same fate on September 17th, 1992 in Berlin where he had attended the Congress of the Socialist International.

 

 

Victims of Iranian State Terrorism

Name

Title

Type of Crime

Date

Place

1

Bakhtiar, shahpour

Prime Minister

Wounded

1980

Paris

2

Tabatabai

Opposition

Killed

1980

USA

3

Shafigh, Shabriar

Opposition

Killed

1981

Paris

4

Hamed, Ahmad

Refugee

Killed

1982

Turkey

5

Nissaghi, Shahrokh

Refugee

Killed

1982

Philipine

6

Zolanvar, Ahmad

Opposition

Killed

1982

Pakistan

7

Oveissi, Gholam Ali

Military General

Killed

1984

Paris

8

Oveissi, Hossein

Opposition

Killed

1984

Paris

9

Tabatabael, aliakbar

Opposition

Killed

1985

USA

10

Mirmanout

Opposition

Killed

1985

Pakistan

11

Chahvardillou, Behroz

Refugee

Killed

1985

Istanbul

12

Azizmoradi, Hadi

Refugee

Killed

1985

Istanbul

13

Mohammadi. Aliakbar

Opposition

Killed

1986

Hamburg (RAF)

14

Fazeli, Bigan

Opposition

Killed

1986

London

15

Monfared, Hamid

Opposition

Killed

1986

Turkey

16

Chitgar, HamidReza

Opposition

Killed

1987

Vienna

17

Amir Parviz, Amir

Minister

Wounded

1987

London

18

Moradi Talebi, Ahmed

Opposition

Killed

1987

Geneva

19

Manssoure, Mohamad Hassan

Opposition

Killed

1987

Turkey

20

Bagheri, Beharoz

Opposition

Killed

1987

France

21

Haeri, Dgavad

Opposition

Killed

1987

Turkey

22

Bagherzadeh

Mojahedin

Killed

1987

Afghanistan

23

Tavakoli-Nabavi, M. Ali

Opposition

Killed

1987

Wembley-Uk

24

Tavakoli-Nabavi, Noradin

Opposition

Killed

1987

Wembley-Uk

25

Bay-Ahmadi, Ataollah

Opposition

Killed

1989

Emirate, Dubai

26

Ghassemlou, Abdulrahman

PDKI, General Secretary

Killed

1989

Vienna, Austria

27

Ghaderi-Azar , Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1989

Vienna , Austria

28

Fazel ,Rassoul

PDKI

Killed

1989

Vienna , Austria

29

Kechavarz, Gholam

Opposition

Killed

1989

Cyprus

30

Kamanger , Sedigh

Opposition

Killed

1989

Iraqi Kurdistan

31

Radjavi , Kazem

Mojahedin

Killed

1990

Coppet-Swiss

32

Kachefpour , Ali

Opposition

Killed

1990

Turkey

33

Mme , Ghazi Efat

Iranian Kurd

Killed

1990

Sweden

34

Elahi Cyrus

Opposition

Killed

1990

Paris

35

Bijanfar , Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1990

Ranieh

36

Broumand, Abdul Rahman

Opposition

Killed

1991

Paris

37

Igarashi, Hitoshi

Traducteur, Japanese

Killed

1991

Tokyo

38

Capriolo, Alberto

Traducteur

Killed

1991

Milan, Italy

39

Katibeh, Sorouche

Opposition

Killed

1991

Paris

40

Mam, Habib

Komele

Killed

1991

Ranieh

41

Mansour , Kamran

Opposition

Killed

1991

Suleimanieh

42

Kurdkoshi, Ahad

PDKI

Killed

1991

Arbil

43

Fathi, Mohammad (Arain)

Komele

Killed

1991

Zargouyz

44

Farhadi Saber (Sarem)

Komele

Killed

1991

Bavehz

45

Jalil, Mamaei

PDKI

Killed

1991

Andarzi-Bouli

46

Alipour , Hassan (Hasso)

PDKI

Killed

1991

Andarzi-Bouli

47

Ghadri, Mola Rassoul

PDKI

Killed

1991

Andarzi-Bouli

48

Yazdanpanah, Sayid

Opposition

Killed

1991

Suleimanieh

49

Saghezi , Khaled

Khabat

Killed

1991

Ranieh

50

Babaei , Mohammad

Opposition

Killed

1991

Suleimanieh

51

Zouraei, Kamal

Opposition

Killed

1991

Dareh, Shahidan

52

Zouraei, Osman

Opposition

Killed

1991

Dareh, Shahidan

53

Ghaderzadeh, Kamal

PDKI

Killed

1991

Panjwin

54

Moghadam, Mansour

Opposition

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

55

Farokhzad, Fereydoun

Chanteur

Killed

1992

Bonn-RFA

56

Moghadam, Homayon

Opposition

Killed

1992

Bonn-RFA

57

Khezri, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

58

Rahmani, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1992

Choman

59

Tatoreh, Ali

PDKI

Killed

1992

Halabcheh

60

Mohammad, Hahi

PDKI

Killed

1992

Halabcheh

61

Saed Panah, Salar

PDKI

Killed

1992

Halabcheh

62

Moradi , Fakhredin

PDKI

Killed

1992

Halabcheh

63

Shikhi, Ebrahim

PDKI

Killed

1992

Route, Ravandouz

64

Firouzi, Shapour

PDKI

Killed

1992

Ranieh

65

Jallali, Satar

PDKI

Killed

1992

Mam Khatibe

66

Kheder, Almass

PDKI

Killed

1992

Mam Khatibe

67

Maroufi,Mohammad Amin

PDKI

Killed

1992

Mam Khatibe

68

Sharafkandi, Sadegh

PDKI, Secretary General

Killed

1992

Berlin

69

Abdullahi, Fatah

PDKI

Killed

1992

Berlin

70

Ordinal, Homayoun

PDKI

Killed

1992

Berlin

71

Dehkordi, Nouti

Opposition

Killed

1992

Berlin

72

Moradi, Shahrokh

PDKI

Killed

1992

Darbandi Khan

73

Ebrahimi, Anvar

PDKI

Killed

1992

Darbandi Khan

74

Moradi, Salah

PDKI

Killed

1992

Darbandi Khan

75

Rastami, Rashid

PDKI

Killed

1992

Darbandi Khan

76

Manouchehri, Taher

PDKI

Killed

1992

Darbandi Khan

77

Nazari, Mohammad

Ranjbaran

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

78

Soleimanpour, Syf Allah

Opposition

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

79

Soleimanpour, Reza

Opposition

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

80

Soleimanpour, Kamran

Opposition

Killed

1992

Suleimanieh

81

Mehrabani, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1992

Barikeh

82

Kagoli, Karim

PDKI

Killed

1992

Panjwin

83

Kagoli, Ahmad

PDKI

Killed

1992

Panjwin

84

Shafei, Kamran

PDKI

Killed

1992

Ranieh

85

Nami , Jamal

PDKI

Killed

1993

Suleimanieh

86

Naghdi,Mohammad Hossin

Opposition

Killed

1993

Ranieh

87

Abassi, Saedoun

Opposition

Killed

1993

Ranieh

88

Faty , Ahmad

Opposition

Killed

1993

Ranieh

89

Doctor , Bahram

Opposition

Killed

1993

Ranieh

90

Azadfar, Bahram

PDKI

Killed

1993

Ankara

91

Ghaderi, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1993

Ankara

92

Darvishi, Mola Ahmad

PDKI

Killed

1993

Dyana

93

Osmavi , Osman

Komeleh

Killed

1993

Suleimanieh

94

Rashidi, Sedigh

Komeleh

Killed

1993

Suleimanieh

95

Mojahedi, Mohammad

PDKI

Wounded

1993

Hajy Abad

96

Shikheh, Pour Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1993

Sangsar

97

Bokani, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1993

Dyana

98

Kermanj , Taha

PDKI

Killed

1994

Choroum, Turkey

99

Eorman, Mostafa

Opposition

Killed

1994

Arbil

100

Rhmani, Sharif

Khabat

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

101

Hedayati, Aboubeker

PDKI

Killed

1994

Sweden

102

Rashidi, Nasser

PDKI

Killed

1994

Turkey

103

Rashidi, Mahtab

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Turkey

104

Hosseini, Sayed Jalal

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

105

Karimi, Rashad

Komeleh

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

106

Karimi, Shafie

Komeleh

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

107

Jahangiri, Salah

PDKI

Killed

1994

Halabcheh

108

Sayidi, Fatah

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Suleimanieh

109

Haydari, Dejahang Ali

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

110

Izadi, Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

111

Sayidi, Ebrahim

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

112

Mohammadpour, Ahmad

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

113

Saboktakin, Aboubeker

PDKI

Killed

1994

Dyana

114

Mamah, Gulh

PDKI

Killed

1994

Maweh

115

Bal Afkan, Karim

PDKI

Killed

1994

Ranieh

116

Almaspour, Ali Asgher

PDKI

Killed

1994

Panjwin

117

Amini, Mollah Osman

PDKI

Killed

1994

Copenhagen, Denmark

118

Rahmani, Ebrahim

PDKI

Killed

1994

Ranieh

119

Mohammadzadeh, Morad

PDKI

Killed

1994

Basarmeh

120

Rouintan, Ahmad

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Dyana

121

Moradi, Jola

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Dyana

122

Mouloudi, Youssef

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Dyana

123

Ghalanderi, Ghader

PDKI

Killed

1994

Dyana

124

Drakhshan, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1994

Dyana

125

Bayzidi, Mohammad Amin

PDKI

Killed

1994

Dyana

126

Hamzaey, Ghafour

PDKI

Killed

1994

Baghdad

127

Taymoure, Ali Akbar

Komeleh

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

128

Abbassi, Keshtmanad

Komeleh

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

129

Souzi, Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

130

Mohammad, Rashid

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

131

Taheri, Sfandyar

PDKI

Killed

1994

Uremieh

132

Taheri, Sohrab

PDKI

Killed

1994

Uremieh

133

Taghizadeh, Behroz

PDKI

Killed

1994

Uremieh

134

Kouhi, Salman

PDKI

Killed

1994

Uremieh

135

Jajouri, Sarajaddin

PDKI

Killed

1994

Uremieh

136

Kordeh, Omar

Refugee

Killed

1994

Bokan

137

Salim Saghalo, Mawloud

Refugee

Killed

1994

Mahabad

138

Manbari, Akbar

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Suleimanieh

139

Hossain, Ojak

Refugee

Killed

1994

Ichvar Ghoumeh

140

Jahani, Khaled

PDKI

Wounded

1994

Suleimanieh

141

Hassan, Jet

PDKI

Killed

1994

Ghala Dezeh

142

Bazargan, Hassan

PDKI

Killed

1994

Ranieh

143

Mahabad, Nouri

Refugee

Killed

1994

Arbil

144

Kheneh- Khali, Jalal

PDKI

Killed

1994

Ghala Dezeh

145

Ghaderi, Mohammad Saeid

Komeleh

Killed

1994

Koy

146

Saghazi, Sedigh

Refugee

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

147

Lavyani, Mohmood

PDKI

Killed

1994

Panjwin

148

Shokri, Morad

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleimanieh

149

Jahangiri, Wasse

PDKI

Killed

1994

Halabcheh

150

Izadi, Amir

PDKI

Killed

1994

Suleihmanieh

151

Mohammad Pour

PDKI

Killed

1994

Bazyan

152

Ryani, Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1994

Darbandikhan

153

Mohammad Zadeh

PDKI

Killed

1995

Shaghlava

154

Khosravi, Haydar

Rafugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

155

Hafidi, Abdulkhalegh

PDKI

Wounded

1995

Suleimanieh

156

Nanoi, Maheen Mand

Rafugee

Killed

1995

Bazyan

157

Abdullah Bag

Rafugee

Killed

1995

Bokan

158

Anjiri, Ismail

PDKI

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

159

Barzan, Sedon

PDKI

Killed

1995

Ranieh

160

Azarbarzin, Mam Hassan

PDKI

Killed

1995

Ranieh

161

Anjinaei, Barzan

PDKI

Wounded

1995

Suleimanieh

162

Mohammadi, Mozafar

PDKI

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

163

Abdullahi, Mohammad

PDKI

Wounded

1995

Bassarmeh

164

Chakerdeh

PDKI

Killed

1995

Bassarmeh

165

Shariatpanah, Najmadin

PDKI

Killed

1995

Arbil

166

Dabiri, Doctor Ali

Refugee

Killed

1995

Ranieh

167

Klani, Osman

Komeleh

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

168

Farinan, Osman

Komeleh

Killed

1995

Suleimanie

169

Hadad, Efat

Mojahedin

Killed

1995

Baghdad

170

Esfandyari, Freshteh

Mojahedin

Killed

1995

Baghdad

171

Hosseeini, Sayed Askar

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

172

Falahi, Ghader

Refugee

Killed

1995

Dyana

173

Adibi, Hossein

Mojahedin

Killed

1995

Baghdad

174

Ebrahim

Mojahedin

Killed

1995

Baghdad

175

Yarali

Mojahedin

Killed

1995

Baghdad

176

Mahmoudi, Rahim

PDKI

Killed

1995

Ranieh

177

Moradi, Farough

PDKI

Killed

1995

Arbil

178

Pirani, Nasser

PDKI

Wounded

1995

Arbil

179

Rostami, AskR

PDKI

Killed

1995

Village Rostam

180

Ghaderzadeh, Mostafa

PDKI

Killed

1995

Ranieh

181

Hosseini, Dammeh

PDKI

Killed

1995

Ranieh

182

Hosseini, Sayed Taleb

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

183

Hosseini, Sayed Moslem

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

184

Fadai, Manssour

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

185

Hosseini, Aftab

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

186

Hosseini, Ktan

Refugee

Killed

1995

Suleimanieh

187

Hassan, Khaleghi

Refugee

Wounded

1995

Dyana

188

Karimi, Aziz

Refugee

Wounded

1995

Dyana

189

Dehestani, Omar

PDKI

Killed

1995

Herir

190

Ruyan, Osman

PDKI

Killed

1995

Arbil

191

Rahimi, Aboubeker

PDKI

Killed

1995

Arbil

192

Mehdizadeh, Ghafour

PDKI

Killed

1995

Koy-Sanjagk

193

Amini, Ali

PDKI

Killed

1995

Koy-Sanjagk

194

Abdullahi, Sedigh

PDKI

Killed

1995

Koy-SanjGK

195

Souhrabi, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1995

Arbil

196

Mohammadi, Haji Abdulah

PDKI

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

197

Shabanzadeh, Rahman

PDKI

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

198

Rouhani, Taher

Komeleh

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

199

Keshvari, Faramarz

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

200

Azizi ,Taher

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

201

Rahimi, Osman

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

202

Ebrahimzadeh, Hassan

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

203

Alipour, Hassan

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

204

Hassanadeh, Farigh

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

205

Ebrahimi, Jahangir

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

206

Abrandi, Parizad

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

207

Ebrahimi, Mohammad Amin

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

208

Sgikhani, Osman

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

209

Ali, Baba

PDKI

Wounded

1996

Jejnekan

210

Shadab, Ali

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

211

Jalali, Abdulkarim

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

212

Hakimzadeh, Kaveh

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

213

Ghalkhani, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

214

Changal, Rahim

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

215

Aklon, Ghader

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

216

Rezapour, Ata

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

217

Sharifi, Reza

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

218

Darmahi, Tilkoeh Ali

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

219

Salimi, Hamed

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

220

Dawlatyar, Kamal

PDKI

Killed

1996

Jejnekan

221

Ghaderzadeh, M. Rassol

PDKI

Killed

1996

Koy-Sanjagk

222

Chalaki, Kaveh

PDKI

Killed

1996

Koy-Sanjagk

223

Bapiry, Hossein

PDKI

Killed

1996

Koy-Sanjagk

224

Omar bill, Jafar

PDKI

Killed

1996

Koy-Sanjagk

225

Pirout-Sour, Amanj

PDKI

Killed

1996

Koy-Sanjagk

226

Mohammadi, Ali

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

227

Haydarabadi, Nasser

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

228

Roueh, Ahmad

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanih

229

Sadegh-Vaziri, Syrvan

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

230

Amin Pour, Mostafa

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

231

Zang-Band, Kamal

Revolutionary Union

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

232

Shakak, Abass

Khabat

Killed

1996

Suleimanieh

233

Khandani, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1996

Ranieh

234

Mazlouman, Reza

Opposition

Killed

1996

Paris-France

235

Pirotzadeh, Abdullah

PDKI

Killed

1997

Kurdistan-Iraq

236

Badri, Abass

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

237

Feizi, Ataollah

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

238

Babai, Farhad

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

239

Alizadeh, Ghaleb

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

240

Molai, Amjad

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

241

Moradi, Sayid

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

242

Namaki, Ismail

PDKI

Killed

1997

Dokan

243

Zokaleh, Ali

PDKI

Killed

1997

Dokan

244

Zita, Hossein

PDKI

Killed

1997

Suleimanieh

245

Nikjouyan, Sayed Jamal

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

246

Fatahi , Mansour

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

247

Nasseri, Sayed Mansour

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

248

Ismailzadeh, Aboubeker

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

249

Hosseini, Rafat

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

250

Shirin Sokhan, Yadullah

PDKI

Killed

1997

Koy-Sanjagk

251

Daryosh , Ferouher

Minister

Killed

1998

Teheran

252

Pirouz , Davani

Writer

Killed

1998

Teheran

253

Parvaneh , Ferouher

Melet Party Iran

Killed

1998

Teheran

254

Majid , Sharif

Sociologist Writer

Killed

1998

Teheran

255

Mohammad, Mokhtari

Poet - Writer

Killed

1998

Teheran

256

Mohammad, Pouyandeh

Writer

Killed

Teheran

257

Jamshid , Partavi

Military-Doctor

Killed

1998

Teheran

258

Chak , Mohammad Amin

PDKI

Killed

1999

Uremia

259

Ghaderi, Mostafa

PDKI

Killed

1999

Uremia

260

Mostafai, Mohammad

PDKI

Killed

1999

Koy-Sanjagk

 

Political Prisoners

 

The regime’s behavior, when it comes to imprisonment, is severely more evil. Generally speaking, all the Kurdish people feel to have been in prison some times in their lifetime for the last 20 years. Where there is no freedom of expression, life can seem, feel and look alike a prison. Although an accurate figure is not available, until now, tens of thousands of Kurds, many of them supports of the PDKI, have been imprisoned, killed in prisons, disabled, tortured and some have then been released carrying visible marks on their bodies.

The authorities in the Regime’s Prisons use many and different means for torturing the prisoners.

Khatemi’s Presidency

Contrary to the image of the regime, which certain groups abroad wish to give, repression is still in order. Supposedly pro-freedom Khatemi has brought about no substantial changes in the overall situation. The regime remains anti-democratic and freedom killing. Its current state with regard to respect for human rights is disastrous. The oppressed people in particular the Kurdish people are still victims of multiple discrimination.

Last February peaceful demonstrations in the Kurdish cities of Sanandej, Kamiaran, Saqez, Mahabad, Uremia were repressed with brutality and bloodshed by the regime’s forces. 41 people (including one 3 year old girl) were killed, dozens wounded and many more arrested. Quite recently, the Iranian regime has made life impossible for the Kurds in exile. Intensive mining of the Kurdish regions, especially in the border areas, has been added to the range of repression, so the kurdish civilians live in a climatic of total insecurity.

Hardly a day goes by without a civilian being killed by the local followers of the regime. Furthermore prisoners are still being executed. At about 5.00 o’clock in the morning May 5th, 1999 two kurds by the names of Mustafa Qaderi born in Mahabad and Mohammad Amin Chuk born in Shinabad, charged with having DPKI membership, were executed in Uremia.

 

Abdullah Hassanzadeh October 20, 2000

Secretary General

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

 

Mr. Maurice Copithorne

United Nations Special Representative on Human Rights in Iran

 

Re: Seven Abducted Kurds

 

Dear Mr. Copithorne,

 

Enclosed please find the particulars about seven members of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) who were abducted by the Islamic Republic of Iran four years ago. The seven members were living in the city of Halabcheh, the province of Suleymanieh, in Northern Iraq. The local terrorists and followers of the Islamic regime of Iran located in Northern Iraq abducted the seven members on October 20, 1996 and delivered them to Iran. We, the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, as their comrades informed you and other international organizations about the criminal act by a letter on October 26, 1996.

I am writing to inform you of the unresolved situation and calling for your help once again. After four long years, the families of the abducted Kurds and the PDKI still do not have any information about them. The Islamic regime of Iran, as you know, and its leaders have spared no weapons for destruction of freedom and the advocates of democracy. We, therefore, are very concerned and worried that the Islamic regime of Iran might have executed six of them.

The families of the kidnapped Kurds and PDKI are desperately in need of your help. We ask that you as the United Nations Special Representative on Human Rights in Iran apply all the resources at your power to find out more about the abducted Kurds. We ask for your help to save their lives or at least to learn about their destiny, the place of imprisonment, their situation, or their possible execution.

The families of the abducted Kurds expect your help impatiently. I hope that you will spare some time and resources to help the abducted Kurds and make the families’ expectation a coherent one.

 

Please do not hesitate to write or call us if you have any questions. Thank you for your time and attention.

Yours truly,

Abdullah Hassanzadeh

Secretary General

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

B.P. 102-75623 PARIS

CEDEX 13-FRANCE

Tel. 011-331-458 56431

Fax. 011-331-458 52093

Abducted Kurds List

 

It is important to mention that Daryoush Islamdoust, one of the seven abducted Kurds, was released mysteriously by the Iranian authorities six months after his abduction.

 

The following six people are still missing:

 

Arshad Rezai,

- Date of Birth: 1962, father’s name: Sadegh

Married and has two daughters 14 & 4 and one son 12 years old

Last address: Shoshemi (village), city of Paveh in the province of Kermanshah

 

Mohammad Aziz Ghaderi

 

- Date of birth 1959, father’s name: Karim

Married and has two daughters 14 and 8 years old

Last address: Nerveh (village), Paveh, Kermanshah

 

3- Yones Mohammad Pour,

 

Date of birth: 1970, father’s name: Mohammad Ali

Last address: Paveh, Kermanshah

 

4- Mozafar Kazemi,

 

Date of birth: 1975, father’s name: Mavlood

Last address: Paveh, Kermanshah

 

5- Marouf Sohrabi,

 

Date of birth: 1976, father’s name: Saeed

Last address: Paveh, Kermanshah

 

6- Adnan Ismaili,

 

Date of birth: 1975, father’s name: Saaber

Last address: Hagig (village), Paveh, Kermansha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi Professor Copithorne:

 

Hope you are doing well

Enclosed are some informations that you might find it interesting and useful.

All the best

Sadi Abdi

 

Sadi Abdi July 28,2000

205-95 St. Andrews Avenue

North Vancouver, BC

V7L 4M8

Maurice Copithorne

Faculty of Law

1822 East Mall

Vancouver, BC. Canada V6T 1Z1

Re: Mansour Abdali

Father’s Name: Abdullah Abdali

Date & Place of Birth: 1966, Khalifeh-Lou (Naghadeh/ West Azerbaijan)

Address: Koy-e-Farhangian, East-e-gahe dovoum in the city of Mahabad

Family Home Phone Number: 98 4421 37105

Dear Mr. Copithorne,

 

Enclosed please find the particulars about a Kurdish advocate, Mansour Abdali. He traveled from Iraq, where he was based, on a peaceful mission for the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) in the fall of 1991 to Iran. On his way back to the Iraqi Kurdistan in 1992, the Iranian forces in the western Iranian City of Piranshehr captured him.

Mansour Abdali was taken to a prison in the city of Mahabad immediately and then to the city of Urmieh and finally he was transferred to the prison of AVIN (Prison #1, Room # 8) in the capital city of Tehran.

What is so unusual about this case is that Abdali’s family did not know that Mansour was alive. The authorities have not told the family about him. The eight year long search was exhausted until a former roommate just released from prison gave the full detailed information about Mansour’s current situation in an unknown prison in Tehran.

Mansour is currently being held in AVIN. However, upon the arrival of the Red Cross and Human Rights representatives, Mansour is taken to another location called TOHEED. The location is not known to be a prison. The signs on the two doors of the unknown prison make the place to resemble a teaching place. The TOHEED prison is located in the north of Tehran. TOHEED has two giant doors. On one door the sign says "The University of Amir Kabir, the Obedient Forces of the Imam’s Path" and on the other door the sign reads " The Palace of the Special Action-Forces of Islam". The signs in Persian language read as follow respectively. DANESHGAH-E-AMIR KABIR, NIROHAY-E-PAIROVE-E-KHATE-E-EIMAM, and GHASER-E-NIROHAY-E-AMALIAT-E-VIZHAH-E-ISLAM. According to his former roommate, Mansour is transferred between the TOHEED prison and prison # 1 in AVIN regularly.

On behalf of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) I am writing to request for your help. If the Iranian government is so hesitant to release him, the Abdali family should at least be granted a visit after 8 long years.

Please do not hesitate to reach us at (604) 904-9402 if you have any questions.

We thank you in advance.

 

Sadi Abdi

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

 

 

Illegal Drug use and Addiction

 

Illegal Drugs use and addiction is the major destroying problem among the Kurdish youths. Along with the ill-intentioned policies of the central government for sidetracking the good will of innocent young Kurdish people, the social and economical conditions have made life unbearable for many in the Kurdish regions. High unemployment, the shortage of amusement for youths, bans on the use of satellite channel and music instruments, the terrible quality of T.V and Radio programming have all contributed so that Kurdish youths to turn to only available sedative, DRUGS ON THE STREETS.

The distribution of illegal drugs particularly in the Kurdish regions is a politically guided to target young Kurdish people. The Iranian agents visibly sell and distribute illegal drugs to smaller and much younger agents throughout Kurdish regions. It is a fact that any one with less than 500 grams of illegal drugs arrested in anywhere else in Iran is deemed to have a very harsh punishment. Many with the same amount of drugs can receive death penalty else where in Iran. However, drug distributions in Kurdistan, surprisingly, carry no punishment at all. In fact people are encouraged to sell and use drugs to raise their families and to alleviate their pain. Unfortunately the numbers of drug user in Kurdistan is growing rapidly. Drug addiction has become such a contagious and devastating problem that many Newspapers (despite of the meticulous control over the Newspapers) have articles about the problem of illegal drug use in Kurdish region. (Enclosed please find one of the articles recently published in Sanandej, Kurdistan).

 

What follows is a list that contains the names of only a few drug dealers, Iranian agents, in many cities in the Kurdish regions.

City of Kamiaran:

1-Manochaher Mohammedi

2-Baqer Sheyadi

3-Sayed Ahmad Ibrahimi

4-Feraydon Ahanger

5-Mohamad Ayoub Ibrahimi

6-Bakhtiar Ibrahimi

City of Pavah:

1-Layeq Veld Bigi son of Bahram date of birth 1969

2-Amir Bayzid son of Abdull khalq date of birth 1970

3-Aresh Neqshbandi son of Areff

4-Shadman Shiani son of Heshmet

5-Naser Siary from the town of Dourbian

6-Shaho Timouri son of Mohammed Amin

7-Mehdi Brari son of Mohammed Selim

8-Saber Inakhi nickname is Keboter

9-Parviz working in the coffee shop of Bahram Veld Bigi

10-Haji from the town of Khanaqa

City of Saqez:

1-Ismile Rezai in the street of Haji Abad

2-Hussein Marouf in the street of Haji Abad

3-Naser Mouradian in the street of Haji Abad

4-Reza Mouradian in the street of Haji Abad

5-Khalil Shikhi in the street of Haji Abad

6-Aqball Rahbar Koshtargah Saqez the region of Silou

7-Abedd Malki district of Shahbaz

City of Sanandaj:

1-Haj Kiumars Hajzadeh

2-Abass Ahmadi (Abass Zougaly)

3-Amir Khaksar the brother of Dr. Khaksar in the street of Chaharbagg

4-Aqball Khorshidi

5-Saber from town of Kooleresh

6-Yedullah Salhi

7-Kayvan Tikhoon

City of Marivan:

1-Abdullah Belqiss

2-Naser Khejehe Bavejen

3-Karim Chelaq from town of Velezhir

4-Mostafa from town of Belcheh Sour

5-Hamid Koureh

6-Toffiq Nicknamed Toffiq Chelaq

7-Feried Hussien son of Haj Toffiq

8-Ali son of Fyeq

9-Shahram nicknamed Dash Shahram

 

 

 

 

Yours truly,

Sadi Abdi

205-95 St Andrews Ave

North Vancouver, BC

V7L 4M8

Tel & Fax # (604) 904-9402

E-mail: sadi_abdi@hotmail.com

 

Critical Issues Facing the Kurdish Community at the National and International Level.

 

A. National Level

 

 

If the central governing authorities in Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria have been successful in sidetracking the Kurdish movements in some parts and making the journey more difficult, is because of the intermingling interests of all the involved parties in the region. Because of Kurdistan’s geopolitical situation, most Kurdish parties and organizations are driven to establish relations with neighboring states that also have a Kurdish population. Those states with deceptive policies often misuse the relationship and therefore slow the progress of Kurdish revolutionary movements. It is, therefore, safe to say that psychologically, the Kurdish public is increasingly distancing itself from the local governing countries that have no democratic tradition and no respect for human rights, and specifically no respect for the legitimate Kurdish national rights. On Domestic Level The Kurds will have to consolidate their power base, by organizing their people and reinforcing their democratic institutions. The Kurds have to do everything possible to preserve their infant democratic experience and promote it. And finally, that they are actually the element of stability and peace not chaos and turmoil as some like to describe them, by proving to the civilized world their readiness to combat terrorism, and expressing their sincere willingness to abandon violence while opting for the triumph of the peace and tranquility for their people and the entire region. On Regional Level, the governments that are occupying Kurdistan today Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria are persecuting the Kurdish people differently but brutally. Although they all meet at one point, that is to cooperate and coordinate their efforts against any Kurdish uprising in any part of Kurdistan to ruthlessly crush it in spite of their differences.

 

The high level of unemployment in Kurdish area has crippled the local economy in spite of very rich natural resources in the region. It is a fact that the Iranian government deliberately, to force Kurdish youth and brain migration to outside of the region, pays no attention to the Kurdish region.

A daily national Iranian paper, "Nowroz", on it’s September 30th edition writes "All six Iranian MPs from the western Kurdistan province have resigned to protest at what they said is "discrimination" against Iran's Kurds and Sunni Muslim minority. On September 30th edition the paper also writes "unemployment is the highest among Kurdish youths". The paper admitted unlike the famous Khatami’s slogan, Iran belongs to all Iranians; "the government has not agreed to give even less than 1% of Kerman province budget to Kurdistan". Nowroz goes on to say that "the social consequences of the high unemployment in Kurdistan is very troubling".

 

A justice Lawyer, Mr. Masaod Khosrawi, in an interview with IRNA, the government’s official agency, said that "After 5 years of Mr. Khatami’s presidency and constant discrimination, the Kurds in Iran have come to the conclusion that even their elected representatives are no longer effective." He also adds that, " out of every 20 Kurdish youth, 10 of them hold a university degree but sell vegetables in Tehran’s markets to make a living." He goes on to say, " the real issue over the mass resignation of the Kurdish members of parliament is not the appointment of a non-Kurd to replace the Kurdish provincial governor", the real issue, he says, "is the denial of all Kurds and their representatives’ justified rights by the Islamic regime."

 

The Islamic government recently has made Kurdish territory, particularly the province of Kermanshah, a "resting place" for drug addicts, criminals, HIV patients and thieves from other parts of the country. On mid October 2001 edition, the daily Islamic newspaper, "Jomhori Islami", writes that 48 prisoners have been diagnosed with AIDS infection in the prisons located in the province of Kurdistan.

 

Geographical

 

The division of the provinces in Kurdistan is not based on the ethnic make-up of the regions. Therefore, in some cases many different ethnic minorities live in the same province, a successful forced evacuation policy for the local governing authorities to sidetrack the minorities’ legitimate issues.

 

We believe in co-existence with other ethnic minorities within the Kurdish region. However, the partition of the provinces, through free referendum, must respect the wishes of the citizens of a particular area. It is important to mention that at the present time only the province of Kurdistan is recognized as the Kurdish territory, Kurds live in four provinces. The majority of the citizens in all the four provinces (West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Iyllam, and Kurdistan) are Kurds. A very small portion of the people in all four provinces is made up of non- Kurd government officials, military, and security forces.

 

B. International Level

 

 

On the political front, the Kurds need much more work to gain international support for a much-needed international recognition. And they have to work out the associated complications with the regional governments that would definitely stand against such a project. The international community should not force any option on the Kurds against their free will and volition. The political game has to be played by the democratic rules and regulations under similar situations. Kurdistan cannot and should not be an exception. The whole world is pre much aware of the plight of the Kurdish people. The public opinion today sympathizes with the Kurdish people in their just resistance to the repeated campaigns of ethnic cleansing and genocide. Only an international political recognition can restore the Kurdish people’s trust in their homeland that would in its turn diminish the number of those seeking immigration abroad. To achieve this, the Kurds need to drive a political and diplomatic campaign explaining their situation to the world community and expressing their readiness to cooperate to resolve the problem.

 

The Kurdish parties have experienced difficulties, because of geopolitical reasons again, explaining the Kurdish issue to the "outside world," an obstacle that has brought about fewer solid friendships with the Western world. The current improved local and international political atmosphere has given the Kurds the opportunity to reveal the "Kurdish issue" to the international community in a more clear fashion.

 

The Kurdish question is in essence the issue of an oppressed people, to which until recently the world community remained distant.  We may even say that directly or indirectly, the world has been a party to that misfortune. Had the international community addressed the Kurdish question in the first place after WW1, and then many tragedies could have been avoided.

 

For one short year, the Republic of Mahabad in Iran, a Kurdish republic was established but in 1946, under intense international pressure, it was dissolved. Following a pact signed by the Iranian central government and the USSR, the Iranian army launched a vast offense in the region thus destroying the republic in December 1946.

 

Had they in 1975 prevented the suppression of the Kurdish struggle, perhaps the Iran-Iraq war could later have been avoided. Between 1961 and 1975, Barzani led the Ailul Revolution in Iraq. The international community withdrew support in the 1975, the revolution failed.

Had the world not remained silent of the crimes on Halabja, the Anfal operations and the use of chemical weapons in other parts of Kurdistan, maybe the second Gulf War could have been avoided.  That is why we say that deep down the Kurds feel that a great injustice has been committed against them.  Today Kurds are demanding recompense.

 

Although we are grateful for what has been accomplished through humanitarian aid we are seeking a political answer and for this reason, we turn to International community, to countries like Canada, to the United Nations in particular to see that the Kurdish question is dealt within accordance with international legal standards. We want appropriate and realistic policies established which acknowledge our rights to self-determination, respect of human rights, and deal with the rights of our dispossessed people
The Kurdish demands are so basic that other people in many democratic countries take "these demands" for granted. We want a just solution for the Kurdish question. For example, the Kurds in Iran want,

 

* An official recognition of the Kurdish people as a Nation and acknowledgement of all the Kurdish territory in four provinces (West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Iyllam, and Kurdistan) in Western Iran. It is important to mention that at the present time only the province of Kurdistan is recognized as the Kurdish territory.

 

* A free and unbiased system with an independent body that can supervise Municipal, Provincial and National elections throughout the Kurdish territory. Self-determination in the region that the Kurds inhabit is the most important matter for the Iranian Kurds, the right to elect officials, the right to use Kurdish language freely, and the right to self-expression.

 

* An end to the suppression and discrimination in Kurdistan and the complete transformation of all governmental, internal affairs and security matters to the Kurdish people and to their elected officials throughout the Kurdish territory.

 

* Official recognition of the Kurdish language as the language of communication for day to day matters in government offices and courts of Law, assembling the right system for using Kurdish language (along with Persian language as the official national language) in schools throughout the Kurdish territory.

 

* Recognition and compliance with all the stipulated liberties as alluded to in the international Declaration of Human Rights throughout Kurdish territory.

 

 

Economic Gains for Western Countries

 

Many Western Countries, including Canada as an active member of Group of Eight Industrialized Countries, G 8, have many trades with the Iranian Government at many levels. Kurds, in the long-term calculations, do not dismiss the pressure of economic trades and globalization; therefore we are in favor of fair trades. Although economic embargo against Iran will hurt the poor more than the central government, the western countries must also note that economic considerations must not take priorities over human and minorities rights.

The Western Economics ties with Iran is a vital one for the government of Iran and therefore we, Kurds, expect the western countries and the Canadian government use such strong economic influence to hold the culprit governments like Iran responsible for their violations of Kurdish rights.

 

The international community and the Canadian government must also regard any perceived and claimed "progress on human rights" by culprit government like Iran with extreme caution. One of many reasons that the Islamic regime has survived for 23 years is because international community, for possible economic gains, have measured any apparent "progress" on human and minorities rights in millimeters. Consequently the justified rights of the Kurds have always been overlooked and Iranian government’s incremental "positive" changes have publicly been acknowledged. President Khatami has yet to implement a single promise that he and his "reformist" followers made during the last two election campaigns. Needles to say that the genuine intention of the United Nations, encouraging any "reforming step", has backfired.

 

 

After September 11, 2001

 

As Kurds we can identify with the families of the victims of September 11, 2001 more than any other nation. The Kurdish people have been subjected to terrorism repeatedly. The Iranian repressive forces resort to the most barbaric methods such as imprisonments, tortures, looting, deportations, executions, destruction and evacuation of villages in the effort to reduce the Kurdish people to silence.

Kurds have never resorted to terrorism to achieve their goal of political freedom and self-determination; they are a peace-loving people who deserve parity and justice. We, as citizens of this great nation of Canada, seek Canadian government assistance in the elimination of terrorism against Kurds.

On 13 July 1989, Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou, Secretary-general of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, DPIK, and two of his colleagues, were assassinated in Vienna, Austria. The Austrian government arrested the assassins and then let them go. The reason for releasing the terrorists was that the culprit country, Iran, threatened to stop its economic relations with Austria. The terrorists of Iran assassinated many other Kurdish figures; yet, the Western Countries chose to adopt the policy of "constructive engagement" with Iran. Dr.Ghassemlou’s successor, Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi met with the same fate on September 17th, 1992 in Berlin while attending the Congress of the Socialist International.

The regional powers in the Middle East, Iraq, Iran and Syria have premeditated at organizing fanatic Muslims who would be ready to terrorize and fight any nation that promotes secular democratic systems or any movement battling for the national rights of oppressed ethnic groups, in this case the Kurdish movement. Their mission is to undermine the Democratic Experiment taking place in Southern Kurdistan by spreading their Taliban style rule and terrorizing the innocent civilians, turning the Kurdish region into another strategic base to implement their evil campaign. Therefore, if the intention of the current US-led military campaign is to make the world a terrorism free place, it must also imply destroying the roots of terrorism that are being planted by state terrorism like Iran.

 

We want the international community to accept that our demands for fair and just treatment are deserving and take the necessary action to put our situation right.  While we are not a vindictive people, we will not back away from our responsibility to ensure that the necessary legal framework is established to ensure our national future.

 

Has the time not come for the United Nations, the international community and countries like Canada to reflect on culprit governments’ record thoroughly? Has the time not come for the United Nations and international community to envisage new tactics in a common endeavor to initiate a tolerant global order based on individual and minority rights irrespective to economic gains?

 

Sadi Abdi

 

 

 

 

 

OTTAWA                                                   PLEASE QUOTE FILE DF02-27702

January 14, 2002

Mr.Sadi Abdi

International Relations Bureau

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, BC

Dear Mr.Abdi,

Thank you for your recent correspondence regarding Hamzeh Ghaderi and the other Kurdish political prisoners under death sentences in Iranian prisons.

I share your concern that these prisoners have been denied their human

rights and the fair operation of justice by the Iranian authorities.  I have

therefore written to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, John Manley, to voice

my concern (a copy of that letter is attached below).  Also, I have asked

him to provide a response to the points you have raised.

Please be assured I will provide a copy of the Minister's response as soon

as he replies.

Sincerely yours,

Svend Robinson, MP

Burnaby-Douglas

SJR/drf

CEP 232

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OTTAWA

PLEASE QUOTE FILE DF02-27702

January 14, 2002

Honourable John Manley, PC MP

Minister of Foreign Affairs

418-N Centre Block

House of Commons

Ottawa, Ontario

K1A 0A6

Dear John,

I was recently contacted by Mr. Sadi Abdi regarding the torture and expected execution of Kurdish political prisoners in Iran. 

A copy of Mr. Abdi's Correspondence is enclosed for your attention.

I support the concerns raised by Mr. Abdi and ask that you provide a

response on this important matter.  I look forward to your earliest possible

reply.

Sincerely yours,

Svend J Robinson, MP

Burnaby-Douglas

Enclosure

SJR/drf

CEP 232

 

The Condemnation of the Regime of Islamic Republic of Iran by the UN Human Rights Commission

On November 30th, the UNHRC condemned the Islamic Republic regime overwhelmingly on the accounts of executing the youth younger than 18, sexual, national and religious discrimination, trial of intellectuals behind closed doors, violation of freedom of expression and etc…

This is the 20th occasion that the UN has condemned the Islamic Republic for its violation of human rights. Aside from UNHRC, several other international organizations defending human rights such as Human Rights Watch, Federation in Defense of Human Rights, the Organization of Journalists Without Borders, the Organization of Doctors Without Borders, and many other institutions and organizations have condemned the regime on numerous occasion and have demanded the regime to abandon its violation of human rights and respect the UN approved norms, and reconsider the articles of Human Rights Declaration that the regime is a signatory.

The human rights story in Iran under the authority of Islamic Republic has been eventful and tragic: once this regime had seized power, attacks on rights and freedoms of the Iranian people, mass executions, the massacre of civilian population, violation of political, civil and cultural freedoms, the assassination of hundreds of opponents, the closure of mass publications, excessive imprisonment and torture, stoning women, sexual, religious and ethnic discriminations, hasty trials behind closed doors and dozens of other assaults against the people of our country have been common practice.

Islamic Republic’s condemnation for the twentieth time by the UNHRC and other centers and institutions defending human rights, even though for the further enlightening of public opinion on the nature of this regime is appropriate and useful, it has not been able to force this regime to cease its tragic actions.

The regime on one hand has agreed and signed the Human Rights Declaration, and on the other its constitution exceedingly is contradictory with this Declaration. This on the other hand reveals the incapacity of UN that recognizes these regimes as the representatives of the people of these countries, and recognizes a regime that its constitution contradicts the international conventions; furthermore, it represents the deceitfulness of the regime that to establish a foundation for itself, and for trade with the world outside - contrary to its beliefs - has accepted such declarations and conventions. The rulers of the regime particularly the hardliners have gone beyond the frontiers of the constitution in violating human rights that are clearly in violation of the Articles of Human Rights.

The condemnation of the regime of Islamic Republic by the UNHRC for the twentieth time coincided with Khatami’s latest trip to the UN headquarters in New York to speak on his so-called thesis, the dialogue of civilizations. The President of this regime is advising the civilized ad developed world in the UN that it is necessary for civilizations to be in dialogue and understand each other, and peace prevail in world and extremism be eradicated and voided, while his associates and co-thinkers are detained and tortured in his own country, and their dailies are closed down.

The regime was condemned while the trial of numerous activists of "Freedom Movement" is underway behind closed bars; several independent newspapers that until recently had not been closed, were shut down; several ratified resolutions by the Parliament were overturned by the supervisory organ of the Guardian of Council and Expediency Council; now that the maximum capacity of the country’s prisons are only 70000 people, 170 000 prisoners exist in the prisons of our country!

The violation of human rights in our country and excess in dictatorship has alienated reform and fundamental changes from the public perception in the context of the regime of Islamic Republic. In internal issues and events of our country, the signs of clearing doubts regarding bringing reform to this system, and the realization of Khatami’s wishful slogans in the framework of the constitution that he is working for, is apparent. The reformist camp within the last 5 years that had been victorious in elections has not been willing and has not even been able to bring about any reform to make the conditions of the people of our country better.

If the UNHRC condemns the actions of this regime due to its violation of human rights, and as usual asks the regime to consider international conventions and norms in protecting human rights, the people of our country have been left with no expectation from the regime, and consider the distinction of the regime as their only alternative.

 

The Condemnation of the Regime of Islamic Republic of Iran by the UN Human Rights Commission

          On November 30th, the UNHRC condemned the Islamic Republic regime overwhelmingly on the accounts of executing the youth younger than 18, sexual, national and religious discrimination, trial of intellectuals behind closed doors, violation of freedom of expression and etc…

            This is the 20th occasion that the UN has condemned the Islamic Republic for its violation of human rights.  Aside from UNHRC, several other international organizations defending human rights such as Human Rights Watch, Federation in Defense of Human Rights, the Organization of Journalists Without Borders, the Organization of Doctors Without Borders, and many other institutions and organizations have condemned the regime on numerous occasion and have demanded the regime to abandon its violation of human rights and respect the UN approved norms, and reconsider the articles of Human Rights Declaration that the regime is a signatory.

            The human rights story in Iran under the authority of Islamic Republic has been eventful and tragic: once this regime had seized power, attacks on rights and freedoms of the Iranian people, mass executions, the massacre of civilian population, violation of political, civil and cultural freedoms, the assassination of hundreds of opponents, the closure of mass publications, excessive imprisonment and torture, stoning women, sexual, religious and ethnic discriminations, hasty trials behind closed doors and dozens of other assaults against the people of our country have been common practice.

Islamic Republic’s condemnation for the twentieth time by the UNHRC and other centers and institutions defending human rights, even though for the further enlightening of public opinion on the nature of this regime is appropriate and useful, it has not been able to force this regime to cease its tragic actions.

The regime on one hand has agreed and signed the Human Rights Declaration, and on the other its constitution exceedingly is contradictory with this Declaration.  This on the other hand reveals the incapacity of UN that recognizes these regimes as the representatives of the people of these countries, and recognizes a regime that its constitution contradicts the international conventions; furthermore, it represents the deceitfulness of the regime that to establish a foundation for itself, and for trade with the world outside - contrary to its beliefs - has accepted such declarations and conventions.  The rulers of the regime particularly the hardliners have gone beyond the frontiers of the constitution in violating human rights that are clearly in violation of the Articles of Human Rights.

The condemnation of the regime of Islamic Republic by the UNHRC for the twentieth time coincided with Khatami’s latest trip to the UN headquarters in New York to speak on his so-called thesis, the dialogue of civilizations.  The President of this regime is advising the civilized ad developed world in the UN that it is necessary for civilizations to be in dialogue and understand each other, and peace prevail in world and extremism be eradicated and voided, while his associates and co-thinkers are detained and tortured in his own country, and their dailies are closed down.

The regime was condemned while the trial of numerous activists of “Freedom Movement” is underway behind closed bars; several independent newspapers that until recently had not been closed, were shut down; several ratified resolutions by the Parliament were overturned by the supervisory organ of the Guardian of Council and Expediency Council; now that the maximum capacity of the country’s prisons are only 70000 people, 170 000 prisoners exist in the prisons of our country!

The violation of human rights in our country and excess in dictatorship has alienated reform and fundamental changes from the public perception in the context of the regime of Islamic Republic.  In internal issues and events of our country, the signs of clearing doubts regarding bringing reform to this system, and the realization of Khatami’s wishful slogans in the framework of the constitution that he is working for, is apparent.  The reformist camp within the last 5 years that had been victorious in elections has not been willing and has not even been able to bring about any reform to make the conditions of the people of our country better.

If the UNHRC condemns the actions of this regime due to its violation of human rights, and as usual asks the regime to consider international conventions and norms in protecting human rights, the people of our country have been left with no expectation from the regime, and consider the distinction of the regime as their only alternative.

dreieck

www.pdk-iran.org©PDKI  All Rights Reserved.

Statement Concerning the Execution of Two Other Scions of the Kurdish People

KDP-I
Kurdistan, 14 October 2002

Following the statement issued by our Party concerning the execution of Hamzeh Ghaderi, we were informed that two other members: Khalid Showghi, aged 50, from a village in Ghassemlou Valley which is a suburb Urumieh(Iranian Kurdistan), and Jalil Zewe-ee from Sardasht region(Iranian Kurdistan), have been executed their offence being members of our Party and their of struggle for the just rights and freedom of their people. The local authorities of the regime had forcibly refrained their families from holding public burial ceremonies and funeral services. Khalid, who had joined the ranks of PDKI from the very first days of Party’s open activities, had to leave the Party due to a 
pack of difficulties befalling his family. He went to Turkey as an asylum-seeker to be resettled in a third country. But he was arrested by the Turkish security forces and handed over to the authorities of the Islamic Republic. Having been imprisoned and 
tortured in the most brutal manner, he was at first condemned to death, and later, his sentence was mitigated to life imprisonment.

Jalil Zewayee, aged 30, was arrested in Sardasht region in 1997. He had been sentenced to death at the same made-to-order court.

While expressing our most sincere condolences to the families concerned, to their fellow-combatants, and to the Kurdish people, as well as all Iranian freedom activists, we strongly condemn these atrocious and inhuman crimes, demanding at the same time of all and every international human rights organizations to protest against these dark crimes, and pressure this 
repressive regime to put an end to the execution of Kurdish democratic freedom activists.

Political Bureau of 
Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

 

 

The tragedy of being Kurd in Iran

 

Alireza Nurizadeh 

The Kurds in Iran, despite being the pioneers of the first Iranian kingdom, and the Medes era considered being the start of civilization, and unlike Turkey where Kurds are called "the mountainous Turks", no one in Iran has dared to make such insulting remarks concerning the Kurds in Iran, Kurds have been suppressed by far more than any other Iranian nationalities.

Despite this, never in the pages of Iranian history, even during the most oppressive periods on the regional authorities in the Reza Shah era in the early decades of the twentieth century where extraordinary injustice was inflicted upon Kurds, they have never faced so much oppression as the last two decades of mass killings and cultural alienation.  To prove this bitter reality, it is enough to shed some light on the number of dead either from military aggression or executions and assassinations carried out by the intelligence apparatus of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the last 23 years; furthermore, add the segregated and torn-apart families, then you will realize that the crack-down on Kurds in an organized and well-planned scheme has been one of the strategic objective of this regime.  All the Iranian ethnic groups are faced with oppression and injustice by a regime identified with beard and turban, but their Kurdness along with their Sunnism, a religious sect different from the official Shiite sect can make the Kurds of Iran an apparent enemy.  An Iranian Azeri is subjugated as mush as a Persian, Loristani, Gillani or kirmanshahi because an Azeri is a Shiite so there is no doubt in his/her Islamism, but Kurds, Baluchis, Turkamans and Talishis and all the Sunnis of western Iran have special circumstances.  In general, because Kurds among other Iranian ethnic groups have been more politically active, first due to their integeration with the national movements of Kurds in other parts of Kurdistan, and secondly in Iran, Kurds reltive to other ethnic groups in the last century have been more autonomous, and even following the World War Two, they established an autonomous republic.  Since then, it has nurtured those such as Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou who have played an important role in the equality movement and struggle; therefore, they have been more suspicious to the central governments in Iran especially to the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Following the Iranian Revolution, Democratic Party of Kurdistan that had a considerable and effective role in organizing and instigating the people of Kurdistan against the previous regime in Iran, was hopeful some of its fundamental demands would be met within the framework of the new regime in Iran, so Kurds could at least play a role in conducting the affairs of Kurdistan.  However, Ayatollah Khomeini did not even respect the will of the people of Kurdistan when he prevented Dr. Ghassemlou, the elected representative of the region to participate in the assembly of experts’ first meeting (the council in charge of drafting the first constitution, and now in charge of electing the supreme leader).  The Ayatollah made unexpected attacks on Dr. Ghassemlou and the Party in the first gathering of the assembly.  With the decree of the Ayatollah, the full scale of attacks of the revolutionary guards started against Kurdish people, and in the cities of Mahabad, Paveh, Sanadaj, and other cities and villages of Kurdistan waves of bloodshed spread.  In the city of Paveh, following the troops’ entry into the city, the revolutionary guards would tied up civilian Kurds to their walls and windows group by group, and they would rain their bodies with bullets.

You all have seen the photos that I had taken out of Iran in the August of 1979, and given them to the English and French media, where in it two brothers of my Friend, Farhad rashidian were shot dead in the airport of Sanadaj.  Dr. Ghassemlou later told me that this picture revealed the true image of Ayatollah Khomeini’s regime, and the international community soon realized that another Gandhi has not emerged, but rather the tragedies of Hitler and Stalin have been repeated.  The regime in Iran never took into account number of concepts such as historical importance, geographical location and a common devotion for a land in regards to Kurds.  From the perspective of the leader of the regime, Kurds are those Sunni infidels who believe in Omar and the injustices inflicted upon Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad.

The same thinking was dominant on those who assassinated Dr. Ghassemlou in Vienna with the order of divine leader of the regime and its intelligence minister Ali Fallahian who following the prayer sharpen their swords and load their pistols.  The killers of Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi, - Dr. Ghassemlou’s successor - and his associates in the Mykonous Restaurant in Berlin, whether the Lebanese who prayed towards the shrine of supreme leader of Iran or those several Iranian conductors and organizers, all believed that by taking a few more lives, they will be rewarded with a larger share in heaven.  Several weeks ago, Ali-Aga Muhammadi, the deputy of Iran radio television and special advisor to the supreme leader in Iraqi Kurdish and Shiite opposition affairs, after a trip to Baghdad and talks and kisses with Saddam’s deputy and several other ministries, in his return report to the higher officials, he expressed his concerns about the attempts of Kurds to establish a federal Iraq.  He also pointed out that the Kurds of Iran especially the Democratic Party of Kurdistan have allied with the Kurds of Iraq to establish a broader Kurdish authority.  Immediately after the report, three members of PDKI who had been held in prison for a long period of time were executed.

Years ago when the conformitists and the ruling elite in Iran accused Kurds of seperatism, Dr. Ghassemlou declared that whoever doubts the Iranianism of Kurds in Iran, should come and see who is more Iranian than us; we who have established the first civilization in Iran, or those who have chosen an Islamic epithet instead of Iran.  It is puzzling, that a political organization whose principal slogan is Democracy for Iran and Autonomy for Kurdistan, must prove its conviction with juriscouncil to prove its Iranianism from the perspective of regime’s officials, while they choose an alien Iraqi as the head of judiciary and no one questions where he has obtained his identity card.

When Khatami appointed Abdullah Ramazanzadeh, a half Kurdish specialist in the field of ethnology from the Belgian university as the governor of Kurdistan province, it was expected that things have changed in Kurdistan; however, very soon, Ramazanzadeh was recalled to Tehran and he almost ended up in the notorious Avin prison because contrary to the wishes of supreme leader and his mercenaries and guards in Kurdistan, he was committed that the local officials must be utilized for conducting the affairs of Kurdistan.  Today, Kurdistan is under the siege of revolutionary guards and the control of intelligence corps.  The most Iranian of Iranians, meaning Kurds, under excessive oppression and with all the pains and wounds, they still cry out "Democracy for Iran, Autonomy for Kurdistan"

This was Mr. Nurizadeh's speech delivered on the 10th anniversary of Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi, in the French Parliament Building on the 23rd of October 2002.

 

 

The League for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran

 

12 October 2002

 

The Execution of Three Political Prisoners in Islamic Republic of Iran

 

 

            According to the two statements of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan’s (PDKI) Political Bureau, Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE, all members of PDKI, after spending years in prison have been hanged within the last week, and their bodies have been returned to their families with one condition that their burials take place quietly without any public ceremonies.

            The execution of Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE takes place in circumstances that during their years of imprisonment no information has been available about their trials and convictions and as the result, the League for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran and the international organizations defending human rights have been unaware of their detainment.

            The execution of these political prisoners one week after the public execution of five convicts with ordinary offences, once again ascertained this historical-political reality that carrying out mass public executions have always been used as a cloak for political executions, and the persistence of oppressive and self-interested states for the continuance and existence of execution has to do with the fact that it can be used as an instrument of terror, oppression and strangulation. It is enough to compare the political terror and executions in Iran with the number of executions related to ordinary offences in the last two decades.

            Therefore, regardless of ethical and humanitarian principles and standards in rejecting executions, abolishing death penalty is essential for the attainment of freedom of consciousness, religion and expression in brining social and political democracy.  It is not a coincidence that one of the preconditions of joining the European Union is the abolishment of death penalty.

            The League along with condemning these inhuman and filthy actions, and above all the execution of Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE, demands the release of all political prisoners and the renewal of the trial of all prisoners who have been predestined to death without having access to a just tribunal conforming to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international standards of civil and political rights.  The League also calls upon the international organizations defending human rights and international institutions, particularly the United Nations Human Rights Commission and European Parliament and Union to take necessary measures to force the government of Islamic Republic of Iran to comply with these demands.

 

Abdol-Karim Lahiji

President of the League for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran

Deputy President of the International Federation of Human Rights Societies

 

The execution of another prisoner of consciousness by the regime in Iran

 

 

Habibullah Tanhaeyan, 41 years old, married with three children, from the city of Sanandaj was detained on 11 December 2002 by the regime’s intelligence elements in the city of Sanandaj.  He had been taken into custody several times before and held for several months on each occasion by the regime in Iran accused of having ties with Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan.  His detainment this time - after four days of interrogation and torture - resulted in his execution on 15 December 2002 convicted of similar accusations.  The deceased body of this brave activist, bearing the signs of excessive torture, was returned to his family four days after his execution.

 

Such a murderous crime of the regime is carried out when a European Union delegation was in the midst of dialogue with the regime in Iran over human rights violations, as well as respect for the rights of the Kurds.

 

Along with expressing deep abhorrence to the freedom restraining and suppressing policies of the regime, PDKI conveys its sincere condolences to the family of forgone Habibullah, all the people of Sanandaj and the surroundings.  We hope that the blood of this triumphant martyr, and others alike, have not been exhausted in attaining peace and freedom, and their legacy have not been washed out; rather, thousands of city youth eager for freedom continue their path and seek justice for all the crimes committed by this regime.

 

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

24 December 2002

 

Press Release of the Kurdish National Congress of North America

 

Regarding the execution of Kurdish political prisoner by Iranian Government

 

In the early hours of October 7, 2002 Mr. Hemzeh Qaderi was executed by the Islamic Regime of Iran.  Qaderi was a member of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) who was arrested in 1997 at the age of  16 by the Iranian police.  After five years of torture and humiliation he was executed.

On the morning of October 8, two other members of the KDPI,  Khalid Showqhi, age 50 and Jalil Zewaee, age 30 were executed.  Showqhi left the party in 1997 due to a number of family obligations and went to Turkey to seek political asylum and to settle in a third country. He was returned by the Turkish secret service and handed over to Iranian authorities.  Showqhi was immediately sent to Uromieh prison in Kurdistan of Iran and after a summary trial was sentenced to death. Later his sentence was reduced to life imprisonment, but after 5 years of torture and interrogation he was executed.

According to reliable sources a total of six members of the KDPI have been executed in the last ten days. So far only the names of three have been released.  The bodies were returned to their families at 11:00 in the evening of October 8 and the families were ordered to bury their loved ones immediately and without ceremony.

According to the news the Islamic regime have ordered the execution of 10 Kurdish political prisoners of which 6 have been executed so far.  Their crimes have been defending their legitimate human rights for their nation and being members of the Democratic Party of Kurdistan.

Since the formation of the Islamic Regime in Iran hundreds of Kurdish leaders have been executed after summary trials. Others have been assassinated in Kurdistan, in Middle Eastern countries and in Europe.

The Kurdish National Congress of North America strongly condemns the inhumane and barbaric acts of the Islamic Regime of Iran against the Kurdish people whose only crime is seeking justice, peace and human rights.  We ask all individuals, human rights organizations, supporters and advocates of justice to demand that the Iranian regime put an end to the acts of state terrorism and violation against Kurdish people and against humanity and civilization.



UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONER May, 03,2002
Ms. Mary Robinson
OHCHR-UNOG 8-14 Avenue de la paix

1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Dear Ms. Robinson:

The Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) is deeply concerned about the continuous violations of human rights in Iran.  In the past month, Iranian authority has arrested a numbers of Kurdish men for returning from the refugee camp (Al-Tash) in Iraq, to their homeland Iranian Kurdistan after a long time. 

Your Excellency, Kurds have been victims of oppression in their homeland for many years.  It is no longer a hidden truth to the world that Iran has been savagely oppressing the Kurds. According to the International Human Rights organizations, Iran has the world’s most heinous Human Rights record.  

Despite all these injustice, a number of Kurds have been arrested over the past month for being in the camp in a foreign country Iraq. Numerous journalists, writers and publishers have been imprisoned for expressing their thoughts.

In the beginning of the Revolution in Iran, The Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini declared a holy war against the Kurdish people in Iran. That’s why some of the Kurdish people had no choice but to escape and left their homeland and went to Iraq. After a long time of desperate life in Iraq, these people decided to go back to their homeland "Iranian Kurdistan" under the UN Refugee Convention.

These names listed bellow are the name of some whom returned back and now convicted to such a punishment. There is no doubt, the Iranian regime is doing this barbaric behavior to these unfortunate people, to prevent the rest of the refugee who was preparing to go back to their homeland "Iranian Kurdistan".

The Refugee Convention, which was formally adopted on 28 July 1951, forms the foundation of the modern international legal system designed to protect people who have to flee their countries because of persecution or conflict. It is widely credited with saving countless lives and ensuring a means of escape for people facing imprisonment, torture, execution and other human rights abuses for reasons such as their political or religious beliefs, or membership in a particular ethnic or social group. 

Please find the available information about the Kurdish refugee prisoners. They were taken to the prison Dizel-Abad in the city of Kerman shah immediately after their arrest.

On behalf of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) we are writing to request for your help. Given the current intense living environment in Iran and particularly in Kurdistan, we plead to you and the international community that you act immediately to save the lives of these Kurdish prisoners in Iran.

We are confident that you and your administration will work sympathetically towards all the oppressed nations including the Kurds.
 

Sincerely,

Sadi Abdi

Member of International Relations Bureau

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, Canada

Sadi_abdi@hotmail.com

 

 

List of the Kurdish prisoners that have been sentenced to Death Penalty and long term

in jail by the Islamic regime of Iran

 

 

 

Name & Last name

Father’s Name

Place of Birth

Date of Arrest

Verdict

Place of Prison

1

Mehmmod Rehmani

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

2

Abdullmajid

Rehmani

Taze-awa

2002

5 years in prison

Kerman shah

3

Khalid Rehmani

Kizeh

2002

Death Sentence

Kerman shah

4

Salih Mehmmodi

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

5

Hebib Nadri

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

6

Anaiet

Baweis

Taze-awa

2002

2 years in prison

Kerman shah

7

Aziz

Sifollah

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah



UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONER May, 03,2002
Ms. Mary Robinson
OHCHR-UNOG 8-14 Avenue de la paix

1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Dear Ms. Robinson:

The Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) is deeply concerned about the continuous violations of human rights in Iran.  In the past month, Iranian authority has arrested a numbers of Kurdish men for returning from the refugee camp (Al-Tash) in Iraq, to their homeland Iranian Kurdistan after a long time. 

Your Excellency, Kurds have been victims of oppression in their homeland for many years.  It is no longer a hidden truth to the world that Iran has been savagely oppressing the Kurds. According to the International Human Rights organizations, Iran has the world’s most heinous Human Rights record.  

Despite all these injustice, a number of Kurds have been arrested over the past month for being in the camp in a foreign country Iraq. Numerous journalists, writers and publishers have been imprisoned for expressing their thoughts.

In the beginning of the Revolution in Iran, The Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini declared a holy war against the Kurdish people in Iran. That’s why some of the Kurdish people had no choice but to escape and left their homeland and went to Iraq. After a long time of desperate life in Iraq, these people decided to go back to their homeland "Iranian Kurdistan" under the UN Refugee Convention.

These names listed bellow are the name of some whom returned back and now convicted to such a punishment. There is no doubt, the Iranian regime is doing this barbaric behavior to these unfortunate people, to prevent the rest of the refugee who was preparing to go back to their homeland "Iranian Kurdistan".

The Refugee Convention, which was formally adopted on 28 July 1951, forms the foundation of the modern international legal system designed to protect people who have to flee their countries because of persecution or conflict. It is widely credited with saving countless lives and ensuring a means of escape for people facing imprisonment, torture, execution and other human rights abuses for reasons such as their political or religious beliefs, or membership in a particular ethnic or social group. 

Please find the available information about the Kurdish refugee prisoners. They were taken to the prison Dizel-Abad in the city of Kerman shah immediately after their arrest.

On behalf of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) we are writing to request for your help. Given the current intense living environment in Iran and particularly in Kurdistan, we plead to you and the international community that you act immediately to save the lives of these Kurdish prisoners in Iran.

We are confident that you and your administration will work sympathetically towards all the oppressed nations including the Kurds.
 

Sincerely,

Sadi Abdi

Member of International Relations Bureau

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, Canada

Sadi_abdi@hotmail.com

 

 

List of the Kurdish prisoners that have been sentenced to Death Penalty and long term

in jail by the Islamic regime of Iran

 

 

 

Name & Last name

Father’s Name

Place of Birth

Date of Arrest

Verdict

Place of Prison

1

Mehmmod Rehmani

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

2

Abdullmajid

Rehmani

Taze-awa

2002

5 years in prison

Kerman shah

3

Khalid Rehmani

Kizeh

2002

Death Sentence

Kerman shah

4

Salih Mehmmodi

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

5

Hebib Nadri

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

6

Anaiet

Baweis

Taze-awa

2002

2 years in prison

Kerman shah

7

Aziz

Sifollah

Taze-awa

2002

15 years in prison

Kerman shah

Honourable Svend Robinson MP

4453 Hastings St

Burnaby, BC

V5C 2K1

Re: Execution of an Iranian Kurd

Dear Robinson

 

Please find the available information about a Kurdish Political prisoner, Karim Tozheli. He was arrested by the Iranian regime in 1998. He allegedly supported the freedom of press and the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan in the city of Sardasht in the province of West Azerbaijan. His execution was coinciding with the visit of the secretary general of the UN Kofi Annan in Iran. Karim Tozheli executed on Wednesday at 10:15 Am January 24,2002, in Mahabad Prison. The rest of the above list will face same fate if International communities and UN keep silence about the death of Karim Tozheli.

We Kurd need your help to save the life of the other seven Kurdish political prisoners in Iran.

List of the Kurdish political prisoners that have been sentenced to Death Penalty since 1997 by the

Islamic regime of Iran

 

All of the following Kurdish political prisoners are to be executed very soon

 

 

Name & Last name

Father’s Name

Place of Birth

Date of Arrest

Political Activity

Verdict

Place of Prison

1

Hamzeh Ghaderi

Hussein

Sardasht

1997

Supporter of PDKI*

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

2

Hassan Mahmoodi

Ibrahim

Piransher

1997

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

3

Khalid Shavghi

Uremia

1997

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

4

Kheder Vissei

Abobeker

Piransher

1998

Pishmergeh* of Shoreshgeran*

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

5

Karim Tozheli

Ibrahim

Sardasht

1998

Pishmergeh of PDKI

ExecutedJan, 24,

2002

Mahabad, West Azerbaijan

6

Saaleh Goderzi

Abdullah

Kamiaran

1999

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Sanandaj

7

Khalid Feridoni

Mahabad

2000

Pishmergeh of PDKI

Death Sentence

Mahabad

8

Omer Fegheh Rassoli

 

Mahabad

2000

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Mahabad

· Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI)

· Kurdish Freedom Fighter associated with PDKI (Peshmergeh)

· A Kurdish Forbidden Political Party, Shoreshgeran

 

Unfortunately one of them with name Karim Tozheli executed by the Iranian authority on Wednesday at 10:15 am January 24, 2002 in Mahabad prison

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, Canada

Tel: 604 783-7631

Fax: 604 904-9402

Sadi_abdi@hotmail.com

 

To call President Khatami a reformist will hurt the Kurds more

  To brand Khatami as a reformist indicates the extent to which the UN is unaware of regimes terrorist attacks against the Kurds. Such a labeling will lead to worsening of the current human rights violations against the Kurds. The Kurdish struggle is a popular movement, which enjoys unprecedented support of the Kurds and freedom loving people around the world. Resistance to Islamic regime terrorist attacks is the legitimate right of the Kurdish people as stipulated in the United Nations Charter and recognized by international norms. Branding the president of Iran, as reformist will jeopardize the international campaign against terrorism and such a labeling will put the UN at loggerheads with peace loving nations.

 

List of the Kurdish political prisoners that have been sentenced to Death Penalty since 1993 by the

Islamic regime of Iran

 All of the following Kurdish political prisoners are to be executed very soon 

 

Name & Last name

Father’s Name

Place of Birth

Date of Arrest

Political Activity

Verdict

Place of Prison

1

Hamzeh Ghaderi

Hussein

Sardasht

1997

Supporter of PDKI*

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

2

Mohamad

Sharvirani

1998

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Mahabad

3

Hassan Mahmoodi

Ibrahim

Piransher

1997

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

4

Khalid Shavghi

 

Uremia

1997

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

5

Jallil

Zeveie

Sardasht

1993

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

6

Mohamad

Mehdi Zalieh

Sanandaj

1993

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Uremia, West Azerbaijan

7

Saaleh Goderzi

Abdullah

Kamiaran

1999

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Sanandaj

8

Khalid Feridoni

 

Mahabad

2000

Pishmergeh of PDKI

Death Sentence

Mahabad

9

Omer Fegheh Rassoli

 

Mahabad

2000

Supporter of PDKI

Death Sentence

Mahabad

10

Karim

Tozheli

Ibrahim

Sardashet

!998

Supporter of PDKI

Executed

Jan,24,02

Mahamad

West Azerbaijan

Unfortunately one of the prisoners that was executed in January, 24, 2002, in the list above, is

Karim Tozheli.

· ·          Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI)

· ·          Kurdish Freedom Fighter associated with PDKI (Peshmergeh)

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Vancouver, Canada

Tel: 604 783-7631

Fax: 604 904-9402

Sadi_abdi@hotmail.com

 

The final Goodbye from a Kurdish activist who was executed by the Islamic republic of Iran on January 24, 2002

 

Karim Toujhali (1968-2002)

 

The Islamic regime of Iran executed a former Kurdish activist on January 24, 2002. Karim Toujhali was executed at the backyard of the Islamic Intelligence Office in the city of Mahabad in the province of West Azerbaijan, Iran.

Karim Toujhali was born in 1968 in the village of Toujhal located in the suburb of Sardasht in West Azerbaijan, Iran. He established political ties with the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) in 1982. Karim Toujhali later joined the PISHMERGE forces, Kurdish Freedom Fighters, of the PDKI in 1986. Karim Toujhali resigned from his political life in 1996. Therefore, in search of a quiet life, he headed to Turkey to find refuge in a third country with the help of United Nations in Ankara, a traditional way of finding a new home in Europe, North America or Australia. Karim Toujhali waited for two years to be transferred to a third country by the UN. It did not happen. He was captured by the Turkish police and was handed over to the Islamic regime of Iran in 1998 contrary to all international measures and agreements.

According to the official publications of the PDKI, "Kurdistan", Karim Toujhali was interrogated violently and tortured for almost 4 years. Karim Toujhali was executed on Thursday morning, January 24, 2002 and the Islamic regime of Iran refrained from handing over his body to his family for 3 days.

 

Karim Toujhali wrote to one of his friends, another Kurdish activist, to reassure him that the political life must go on with no hesitation. What follows is the exact translation of Karim Toujhali final goodbye written in Kurdish.

 

I had been thinking about writing a letter for a while so I could inform you about my well-beings. I know that you must have worried about the position that I would take under interrogation after I was captured. Trust me that I neither had any time nor I was allowed to have any visits until just recent few days. In this fearful situation and under these horrible circumstances I will write these few lines and send it to outside of the prison.

First I would like to tell you about how I was captured. I was asked by the United Nations to go to Ankara in February 1998. With the intention of resolving any departure problem from Turkey and sending me to a third country, I was taken by the UN to the Turkish Central Security Office in Ankara. The UN official introduced me to the Turkish police, and I was instructed by the UN to leave my address with the police. I was told to be present at the police station upon receiving order from the Turkish police.

One month later, I was summoned to appear before the Turkish police. I took precautionary measures and contacted the UN by telephone to prevent any surprises. The UN reassured me that my situation had been looked after and I should go to the police station without any worries about my case in Turkey.

I was handcuffed immediately upon my arrival at the police station. When I opened my eyes I was at the Turkey-Iran border. Attempts of pleading and bribing were not effective in making the Turkish police change their mind and not deport me back to Iran. Therefore I was handed over to a few Iranian policemen who had been awaiting my arrival on the other side of the border.

I was taken to the Security and Intelligence office in the city of Khoy, in the province of West Azerbaijan, Iran. After a few days of interrogation in Khoy, I was then taken to the Central Office of Intelligence for the Province. There, Hagi Ghodret told me that the intelligence office had been looking for me for one year. I was told that they were very happy to have me at their hands finally. Hagi Ghodret also said that only my cooperation with Intelligence Officers would save my life. [Hagi Ghodret, meaning Mr. Power, is a secret nickname for a popular Iranian Regime Interrogator].

Things were going well initially. I knew their initial good behavior was a deceptive tactic to get information and a confession out of me. I did not tell them any thing that they wanted to hear. I did not reveal any information, and this made them increasingly mad as time went on.

The honeymoon ended after a few days of intensive but "pleasant" interrogation and

came generously the "Holy blessings". I don’t want to go into the details about the "Holy blessings" neither do I want to make any bones about it. I do, however, want to tell you that I was taken to a room in a basement that resembled an operating room. The room was equipped with all kinds of torturing devices with a projector. I was put under the powerful projector, then electric currents were sent to my head many times. I would then be taken out semi consciousness. The interrogators wanted any information about other Kurdish activists and PDKI. They tried very hard but they did not succeed. I did not tell them anything.

I was then taken to the city of Sardasht. After two months of intense interrogations, torture, beating and physical assault I was then taken to the detention center of the Intelligence Central Office in the city of Mahabad.

With the exception of the Intelligence officers, nobody was aware that I was held in the detention center in Sardasht. The intelligence officers with their hidden agenda tried very hard to deviate me from my beliefs. They wanted me to digress my party and start giving them information about the Kurdish activists and PDKI. I, to the dismay of the Intelligence officers, had enough political experience to tolerate the torture and to fight for my beliefs. Therefore, their search of finding any information about the Kurdish activists from me had failed.

The interrogators asked me to denounce the Kurdish cause publicly at the following places:

· through TV appearances

· to speak at a Friday prayer in the city of Sardasht

· to speak for the local counselors and elders from the Belfet region in a mosque in the village of Mirabad.

 

I refused to do them all. Then came their last request. The interrogators asked me to cooperate with their secret service. They asked me to "work" on some friends close to you so as infiltrators so they could provide the secret service with information on the Kurdish activists in the future. I should tell you that with any kind of cooperation, outwardly, they were promising my freedom and very significant economic gains.

I was very aware of their tactics and intentions. Therefore, I did not give much consideration to what they were saying. Immoral request deserves no attention, don’t you think so?

My position, a constant refusal to cooperate, made them very angry and they vowed to sentence me to death. I was then taken to the detention center in the city of Mahabad, where I appeared in an Islamic revolutionary court with no defense lawyer. The ceremonial court, which lasted a few days, sentenced me to death.

Although I have been sentenced to death, I am proud of the fact that I have not seen any Kurdish activists in the dark prison cells of the Islamic regime following my capture. That is why I would like to reassure you that I did not give them any information about any Kurdish activists, which might lead to his capture. I must say that the interrogators tortured me and pressured me severely to give them information about other Kurdish activists.

How could I? Irrespective to our mutual ties to the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, It is my ethical and moral responsibility to remain committed to all Kurdish activists. In order to save other Kurdish activists I am, and always will be, ready to be hung in order to preserve my ethical and moral commitment to my comrades.

Off course, Mirzaie [a secret nickname for a local spy] testified and disclosed some information in the detention center. That is why it is possible that he may have said something to disgrace my name. Although the interrogators had a lot of specific information about my political activities I did not confess to any and refuse them all.

I would like to reassure all of you that I have not revealed any information about any Kurdish activists. To protect its own interest, the Islamic regime, I suspect, may have made a huge propaganda out of all of this. I am asking that you would reassure everyone who might have had some concerns about themselves that I have not reveal any information about anybody.

At the end, I must say that this might be the right time to say good-bye and ask for your forgiveness. I hope that you would forgive me. I on my part forgive all of you. Good-bye everyone.

 

 

Source: This paper is the exact translation of the letter Karim Toujhali wrote 3years ago.

The Kurdish letter was published in "Kurdistan" # 334, the official publication of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

 

 

Iran remains the most active state sponsor of terrorism while Libya and Sudan came closest to meeting Washington's demands for cooperation after the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, the State Department said in a report Tuesday.

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard and the Ministry of Intelligence and Security "continued to be involved in the planning and support of terrorist acts and supported a variety of groups that use terrorism to pursue their goals," said the department's annual report, entitled "Patterns of Global Terrorism."

"Although some within Iran would like to end this support, hardliners who hold the reins of power continue to thwart any efforts to moderate these policies," the report said. Since the outbreak of the intifadah, support has intensified for Palestinian groups that use violence against Israel, the report noted.

However, during the past year Iran appears to have reduced its involvement in other forms of terrorist activity.

"There is no evidence of Iranian sponsorship or foreknowledge of the September 11 attacks in the United States. President Khatami condemned the attacks and offered condolences to the American people."

This year's list of seven state sponsors of terrorism - Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, Sudan, Syria and Cuba - remains the same as in previous years.

"The terrorist threat is global in scope, many-faceted and determined," Secretary of State Colin Powell said on release of the report, which is mandated by Congress. "The campaign against terrorism must be equally comprehensive, multidimensional and steadfast. It must be fought on many fronts, with every tool of statecraft."

The report marks the significant progress that the United States and its coalition partners are making in the war against terrorism, Powell said.

"Country by country, region by region, coalition members have strengthened law enforcement and intelligence cooperation," he said.

"We have tightened border controls and made it harder for terrorists to travel, to communicate, and therefore to plot. One by one, we are severing the financial bloodlines of terrorist organizations," Powell said.

Sudan and Libya "seem closest to understanding what they must do to get out of the terrorism business," but none of the seven countries has yet taken all necessary actions to divest itself fully of ties to terrorism, the report said.

Militant Islamic groups such as al Qaeda continue to use Sudan as a safe haven, primarily for support activities, the report added.

North Korea, which President Bush said was part of an "axis of evil," also was cited as "disappointing" in its efforts to combat international terrorism.

North Korea did not respond to U.S. proposals for talks on terrorism and did not report efforts to block the financial assets of suspect groups, the report said.

The Sept. 11 attacks, which claimed over 3,000 lives, made 2001 the deadliest year for terrorist attacks, but the number of international terror attacks in 2001 actually declined to 346, down from 426 in 2000.

Countries cited as state sponsors of terrorism cannot buy U.S. arms or dual-use technology. They are also ineligible for U.S. aid and subjected to financial restrictions that may require U.S. approval through the World Bank and other international financial institutions.

 

The Islamic Republic of Iran "The Regime of Fear and Terror"

The crimes that the Islamic Republic of Iran has committed against its own people during its last 23 years of its corruptive reign in Iran is not hidden to any one. Below, as a series of questions, a glimpse of these crimes is listed.

1- Did you know that Ayatollah Khomeini, the pioneer leader of the Islamic regime, declared a holy war on the Kurds in April 1979, and denounced the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (DPKI) as an anti -Islamic Party?

2- Did you know that during the Iran-Iraq war, the clerics fooled hundreds of thousands of Iranian schoolchildren and youth to wear pendants as their heaven key in the battlefields after their death?

3- Did you know that the Tehran regime harbours most of the terrorist groups and it raised the budget allocated for the terrorist groups to 270 million dollars in 1997?

4- Did you know that one million Iranian were killed or maimed during the eight-year war with Iraq?

5- Did you know that the eight-year war cost the Iranian economy more than a trillion (US dollar) of war damages, according to figures published by the regime itself?

6- Did you know that Iran targets its dissidents abroad, where more than 300 opponents have been assassinated by the Iranian regime abroad?

7- Did you know that Iranian regime has been condemned more than 20 times by the United Nations Human Rights Commission and other Human rights organizations for violating the most primitive rights of Iranian citizens?

8- Did you know that more than 12, 000 political prisoners were massacred only in a few days in 1988? The order had been given directly by Ayatollah Khomenei.

9- Did you know that most of the terrorist groups are getting financial support from Iranian regime and the Qods Force gives the training courses? (The organization for the extraterritorial operations of the Guards Corps) and the Ministry of Intelligence.

10- Did you know that Iran under the clerics is the only country that has "stoning to death" as punishment for women? Stoning to death is a pre-Islamic practice condemned by Islam.

11- Did you know that more than 53% of Iranians are under the poverty line? "Banyan newspaper".

12- Did you know that more than 8 million Iranian Kurds forbidden to be educated in their native language and all government communications at all levels is restricted to Persian? the official language of Iran.

13- Did you know that the Islamic regime of Iran uses the Kurdish territory, particularly Kerman shah province, as a resting place for drug addicts, criminals and other difficult groups from around the country? "Report of the United Nation Human Rights Commission, 2001".

14- Did you know that on July 13, 1989, the Iranian terrorist-diplomats assassinated Dr. Abdul Raman Ghassemlou the secretary-general of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) in Vienna (Austria)? as he was negotiating with envoys of the Iranian regime, at the latter’s invitation, for a peaceful solution to the Kurdish issue in Iran.

15- Did you know that Dr. Shahpour Bakhtiar, the Shah’s last Prime Minister, was savagely killed by the Islamic regime of Iran? Bakhtiar’s throat was slit.

16- Did you know that Iran has for decades routinely sent assassins in to other countries to kill its political opponents?

17- Did you know that on September 17, 1992, Dr. Sadiq Sharafkeni the secretary-general of PDKI and also Dr. Ghasimlou’s successor was gunned down along with three of his associates in Mykonos Restaurant in Berlin by the Iranian mercenaries?

18- Did you know that Kazim Rejevy, the representative of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, was assassinated by the Islamic regime of Iran in Switzerland?

19- Did you know that in the Islamic Republic’s constitution, only male Shi’a clergies can become the head of the state and take high position of the leadership?

20- Did you know that the head of the judiciary Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi spoke out against the institution and said: "each year 600 thousands people get arrested by the Iranian authorities"?

21- Did you know that in Iranian prisons, there have been people who have been detained for more than 22 years without any trial?

22- Did you know that today more than 6 million people of Iranians mostly young are addicted? And their name is on the dead list.

23- Did you know that the Iranian authorities are distributing drugs among the Kurdish youth extensively in Iranian Kurdistan?

24- Did you know that 85% of the prostitute girls in the capital city of Iran (Tehran) are selling their body to make a living? according to one of the high-ranking Iranian official "Amir Ali Amiry", quoted in Banyan newspaper.

25- Did you know that Hashmi Refsenjani, the former President of the regime and the current head of the Expediency Council is in the top 47 wealthiest men in the world?

26- Did you know that each year the Iranian government gives millions of barrels of free raw oil and millions of dollars to the Syrian regime?

27- Did you know that on July 8, 1999, the government and vigilantes acting with the consent of the authorities used excessive force in attacking a dormitory during student protests in Tehran, chanting " Hussein accept it from us" throwing students from the windows?

28- Did you know that in respond to of one of the student’s question, President Khatemi said, "We do not have any innocent political prisoners"?

29- Did you know that Iran has one of the largest numbers of unemployed in the world?

30- Did you know that the Iranian authorities sexually harass most of the prisoners male or female in the Iranian prisons?

31- Did you know that in the Iranian prisons, the authority rape the virgin girls before their execution? The clergies are saying that these girls should be raped before their execution otherwise they will go to heaven!!!

32- Did you know that just in one day 59 young Kurds were executed in the city of Mahabad by the Iranian authorities? In response to one of the question that whether they were guilty or not, Ayatollah Khalkhali (then the head of security for Kurdistan region) had stated that "If they were guilty they will go to hell and if they were innocent they will go to heaven"!!!

33- Did you know that the thugs sentenced for conducting "serial killing" of the dissidents in Iran were acquitted a year later Ayatollah Ali Khamenei reversed the verdicts?

 

34- Did you know that the budget of Kurdistan province is not even 1% of the budget of the city of Kerman? "Norouz newspaper".

35- Did you know that the Iranian regime is using all its capabilities to acquire nuclear and weapons of mass destruction as quick as possible?

36- Did you know that by the end of 2000, more than 30 independent newspapers and journals were closed; dozens of individual editors and journalists have been arrested?

37- Did you know that each year more than 200 students are committing suicide? "Banyan newspaper".

38- Did you know that the Iranian forces have killed more than forty thousands of Kurdish people in Iranian Kurdistan?

39- Did you know that 1200 executions, 17 stonings, 90 assassinations have been conducted during the Khatemi’s presidency?

40- Did you know that the Iranian intelligence agency has vowed to re-launch its website to recruit volunteers to carry out worldwide suicide attacks?

41- Did you know that the average Iranian people are selling their kidney to manage their lives?

42- Did you know that in the last few years more than 27 thousands Iranians have died due to drug addiction?

43- Did you know that the top leadership of Iran, Khamenei (supreme leader), Refsenjani (former president) and Felahian (former intelligence minister) were found guilty by the highest German court, having directed the killing of Dr. Sadiq Sharafkeni, and the three of his aides in Berlin?

Sadi Abdi

Member of International Relations Bureau

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

Sadi_abdi@hotmail.com