||[FREE IRAN Project] In The Spirit Of Cyrus The Great
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Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Location: SantaFe, New Mexico
|Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 1:48 pm Post subject:
I have a couple suggestions in regards to this most interesting slight distraction that made his brief visit so entertaining to folks.
Let's send a nice report card to the IRI on his failure....since this site is enough of a pain in the butt to the regime that they'd send this fool, but arn't willing to take the time to send someone competent enough to truly disguise (at least for a time) intent, let us then suggest to the IRI that they need to improve upon the quality of the idiots they send here, not just because we obviously have a few folks that need a little entertainment in their lives, but because I view sending such an incompetent to us is a bit of an insult....is this site not enough of a pain in the butt to the regime to send us some decent cannon fodder?
Let's ask them to "Bring it on"....
Folks here remind me of my cat, (the one that terrorizes mice) in wishing you hadn't banned the boy when we were just getting started...(like when I take a humane stance and toss the still barely alive mouse out of the house that my cat has so proudly brought to my attention....LOL!)
The reaction here is similar to my cat's, as she looks at me with a "what up with that?" look.
But hey, my point is I think we need to have a bit more of a challenge....you have the boy's IP address on file , let's publish it....send it back to the IRI and say...."who's next?"
Now that would be entertainment.
Joined: 26 Feb 2004
|Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 3:52 pm Post subject:
|AmirN wrote: |
I think you are correct in your interpretation of Peyman. Also, this is your house, and it is certainly your right to do as you wish in here.
I will offer my opinion regarding this matter. Even though this Peyman character is a Taazi mouthpiece, I don’t agree with banning him. I think that Taazis should be allowed to speak their minds in this forum or any other forum. That’s not because I am a big proponent of free speech, but because I think that such Taazis ultimately better serve our cause.
As we saw, the foolish nature of Taazi Peyman became quite apparent by itself. Members here from blank to Oppenheimer to Cyrizian did not hesitate to put him in his place. Such discussion which was sparked, although irritating to members, was actually beneficial. It served to demonstrate the weak ground upon which the Taazi stands. It highlighted some informative and beneficial points to ponder. Some view it as a diversion. I view it as the scenic route.
By allowing the foe to speak, we give them plenty of free rope with which to hang themselves. Their own words and actions undermine themselves better than we ever could without engaging them.
So I say let’s not ban anyone unless they post illegal material, pornography, spam, or blatantly abusive remarks.
I realize that many will not agree with me. Regardless, this is my opinion.
If it was any other time, I would have agreed with you, BUT, right now we are in the middle of a crisis, trying to figure out how to free Iran. Allowing somone to come in and DISTRACT, CONFUSE, AND USE EVERYONES' ENERGIES TOWARD TRIVIAL AND NONSENSICAL DEBATES, WILL ONLY BE FUTILE AND WASTE OF TIME AND ENERGY THAT WOULD HAVE OTHERWISE BEEN CHANNLED TO A BETTER CAUSE.
THEREFORE, I BELIEVE CYRUS DID THE RIGHT THING.
For the short time that Payman was here, he skillfully distracted me and others to respond to his stupid nonsense, as much as I tried to ignore him,
I couldn't help but to get into a dispute with him, and that was truly a waste of time for me on this site.
Joined: 26 Feb 2004
|Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 5:19 pm Post subject: Re: Most Wanted Taazi Thugs
|Sorry..... Dupe messages
Last edited by blank on Thu Jun 08, 2006 6:42 pm; edited 2 times in total
Joined: 26 Feb 2004
|Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 5:20 pm Post subject: Re: Most Wanted Taazi Thugs
|Sorry, Dupe message
Hope site Admin can delete it
Last edited by blank on Thu Jun 08, 2006 6:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Location: SantaFe, New Mexico
|Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 6:14 pm Post subject:
|The US can bring a lot of good things with it. And like it or not the US already has a finger in every country on the globe. There is simply no way to get away from them. The US owns ALL! And its just as well because I would rather it be the US any other country.
You call it propoganda, (laughs) I call it the way of the world.
Just a point of fact I must point out here that while the US may influence all, in a globalized world, we don't "own all.." nor do we wish to. The world would be quite the boring place if that was the case.
Who would we trade with if we owned all....ourselves?
America's been called a "hyperpower" , accused of being the world's cop on the beat when it is essentially all nation's task....and with over 90 countries allied together in the war on terrorism, over 60 taking part in the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) , the sponsor of MEPI , and other democratic and civil sociatical forums that the US taxpayer has funded, not to mention some 23% of the total UN budget over the years, sponsoring forums of women's rights and participation in civil society, food and humanitarian aid to natural disaster and post conflict areas, the participation in many multilateral fora of conflict resolution globally...(East Timor, Sri Lanka, Darfur, Congo, Burma, , long standing border disputes, separatist unrest, genocide, poverty, AIDS, global warming, nuclear proliferation.....we don't own people's minds either obviously, nor would it be wise to try to do so...
Making people think however, is in a natural course, going to change people's circumstances as they find solutions in consensus, and the status quo changes. And so as a result, and as a simbiotic process of dealing with the issues, mindsets also change in the process.
Knowledge is power it's said, and folks often refer to US "soft power" and "hard power" in reference to the two most common implementations...diplomacy and military intervention.
But the power of credibility is what drives the hyperpower in securing a better world for all to life, liberty, and the persuit of happiness. That credibility lies in our values as manifest through intent of US foreign policy, as well as the effectiveness of that policy implementation, and it's ability to change the status quo for the betterment of mankind.
Whether that be via the UN, a "coalition of the willing", or via what has commonly been refered to as "cowboy diplomacy" (which is when the US comes along with with a posse of nations and deals with a threat in no uncertain terms...."Dead or Alive" (bin Laden)....."48 hours" (to Saddam)...
Well, the US has been changing a few mindsets.....there's a natural opposition to the status quo (being that it isn't serving the global community or its populations), at the same time there are certain mindsets that object to any change in the staus quo as a threat....either to their interests, or because they fear change of any kind.
The basic US position as I see it is that on a global democratic standard, its promotion of that free standard of living as a universal goal of all people meets the basic necessities of of the values that shaped America, regardless if that democratic standard adopted by another nation resembles Jefersonian Democracy. The point is only that the people's will, and inherent value system from a cultural basis wil be honored by the government seeking a hand up toward the 21st century, in partnership with the US.
In other words, so long as one's cutural values honors the basic principals of life, liberty and the persuit of happiness ( and doesn't deny those rights to others in process) then one becomes a respected , trusted, and honored member of the global community.
Case in point is the IRI's spokes-monkey the other day said "Iran demands respect from the international community".
Iranian pride? Aye folks, seems to me in general if you're demanding respect from others, it's because you have none to begin with, or you lost it some time ago.
So how much pride can be taken in the average Iranian's mind regarding the level of respect deserved by the regime?
Hands off Iran? I don't think so given the current state of affairs....but the people of Iran do deserve respect, that's why the regime was given "a clear choice" the other day.
It's also why US policy has supported the Iranian people's aspirations for liberty, dignity, and a voice in their own affairs...as part of a global policy for a more peaceful world for our kids and their kids to live in.
That's also why a two-state solution was proposed by the US to end Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Aside from having been the biggest doner of humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people, supprting an independant and contiguous Palestinian state as the US has, seems to have gone in one ear, and out the other (having just passed through a vacum) in some individual's case....
Who then is bringing this down to a base level of "right to exist" other than those who've threatened the peace of nations, as Hamas, Hezbollah, the IRI, Syria, and Al Quaida have done?
Japanese leaders learned the hard way that if you want to start a fight with the US, the number one way to ultimately lose is to start it with an unprovoked sneak attack....military or civilian is not relevent to the "awakening of the sleeping giant" as Yamamoto put it propheticly just after Pearl Harbor.
In today's case...it is the challenge of the global community to awaken to the dysfunctional factors that have largely contributed to their own failure to keep the peace of nations over the decades, and change the status quo....this the US cannot, nor should it .....fail to play a leadership role in altering circumstance to promote positive change.
"going it alone" becomes a misnomer as the reality of leadership is not a singular act.....but done in partnership with others with cooperative effort.
As someone put it, you don't lead (or get elected) if you say "Follow me, the world's going to hell, and I'll lead you strait to it." as Antar is doing (or attempting to do) with the Iranian people, and Muslims in general....trying to rub off some of bin Laden's socio/political "success" on himself in an attempt to bring Iranian "leadership" to the fore in the Mideast.
Antar ran on a platform of exposing coruption in the regime, and I applaud him for bringing more transparency of the regime to the eyes of the world.....we can smell the stink of festering ill intent so strong that it's now impossible for anyone to ignore....
Mr. Peyman called this a "pro American site"......I got a personal chuckle over that one......when it is simply a pro-democracy site with emphasis on Iran....by for and of Iranians.....but international in imput and opinion found on it.
Mr. Peyman may wish to reflect on the difference between being ignorant, and opening his mouth and proving his ignorance.
Boy's got issues that I doubt anyone here can help him resolve, and that's his problem , not mine....speaking as an American.
Joined: 03 Mar 2005
Location: SantaFe, New Mexico
|Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 3:19 pm Post subject:
|Note: While the following does not specificly mention Iran, the subject matter is related to the state of play for NGO's in dealing with the IRI.
U.S. Department of State
The Role of Non-Governmental Organizations in the Development of Democracy
Barry F. Lowenkron, Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
Remarks to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
June 8, 2006
Chairman Lugar, Members of the Committee, thank you for your active interest in
the essential role that non-governmental organizations play in the defense of
freedom and the development of democracy across the globe. I welcome this
opportunity to highlight the contributions of NGOs, to share with you our
concerns about the restrictions that a growing number of governments are
placing on NGO activities, and to offer suggestions on how we can protect NGOs'
vital work. I will summarize my prepared remarks, Mr. Chairman, and request
that my full testimony be entered into the record.
When I appeared before this Committee last September seeking confirmation as
the Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, I stated that,
if confirmed, one of my highest priorities would be "to consult and partner
closely with the many dedicated and capable NGOs working on human rights and
democracy." I also pledged to "make every effort to protect the work of NGOs
against efforts by foreign governments to constrain, harass, intimidate, and
silence their work."
As Assistant Secretary, I have had the privilege of meeting with many NGOs,
both here and abroad, and I have greatly benefited from their information,
their insights and their ideas. As President Bush stated in his second
inaugural address: " it is the policy of the United States to seek and support
the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and
culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world." The work of
NGOs is crucial to reaching that goal.
A Wide World of NGOs
The rise of NGOs as international actors as well as shapers of national policy
is one of the most important trends in international relations. NGOs encompass
the entire range of civil society: from lobbying for better health, protection
of the environment, and advancement of education for all; to delivering
humanitarian relief and securing and protecting basic civil and political
There are NGOs devoted to specific health issues, such as women's health care
or HIV/AIDS. I note the tireless effort and good work of the Whitman Walker
Clinic here in the Washington Metropolitan area. There are also NGOs based
thousands of miles away that are battling these same concerns. For example, the
Kenya AIDS NGO Consortium is a coalition of some 600 NGOs and religious
organizations that deal with AIDS-related activities in Africa. Indeed, the
AIDS pandemic has spawned a host of indigenous NGOs in sub-Saharan Africa.
Environmental NGOs in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe played a vital
role in the political, social and economic changes of the 1980s. Today, they
continue to have an enormous impact in countries across the globe, pushing for
governmental transparency and accountability which in turn can fuel political
Today, my primary focus will be the so-called political NGOs -- those that
advocate for human rights and democratic principles and practices. Although
they constitute only a small component of the global NGO community, they are
the ones that draw the most fire from governments who view them as a threat to
These NGOs build on a legacy of championing human rights through norm-setting
and monitoring. They have helped to shape international agreements,
instruments, institutions and human rights mechanisms over decades. NGOs were
key to shaping the language on human rights and fundamental freedoms in the
United Nations Charter and of the U.N. Universal Declaration on Human Rights
itself. These NGOs courageously defend human rights activists, often while
risking reprisal themselves.
Together with the increasing worldwide demand for greater personal and
political freedom often reflected in the work of these NGOs is the growing
recognition that democracy is the form of government that can best meet the
demands of citizens for dignity, liberty, and equality.
Today, all across the globe, NGOs are helping to establish and strengthen
democracy in three key ways:
* First, NGOs are working to establish awareness of and respect for the right
of individuals to exercise freedoms of expression, assembly and
association, which is crucial to participatory democracy.
* Second, NGOs are working to ensure that there is a level playing field upon
which candidates for elective office can compete and that the entire
elections process is free and fair.
* Third, NGOs are working to build and strengthen the rule of just laws and
responsive and accountable institutions of government so that the rights of
individuals are protected regardless of which persons or parties may be in
office at any given time.
These efforts by NGOs mirror the discussions I have had with Secretary Rice on
democracy promotion in which she outlined the three main areas that inform our
democracy activities: electoral -- the right of assembly, free speech and all
other elements that constitute representative democracy; the importance of good
governance -- a government by the people that is accountable, transparent, and
willing to accept constraints on power and cede it peacefully; and a
flourishing civil society. NGOs play a vital role in all three areas.
U.S.-based NGOs such as the National Endowment for Democracy, the Center for
International Private Enterprise, the American Center for International Labor
Solidarity, the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, the
International Republican Institute, IFES and Freedom House actively promote
democracy across the globe. This type of activity is not unique to the United
States. The German political Stiftungen served as models for the creation of
the NED family in the 1980s. The British Westminster Foundation is a leader in
democracy promotion. The Danes promote worker solidarity and labor rights. The
Czech Aide to People in Need actively supports human rights. All of these
efforts are conducted openly and transparently and are consistent with
international standards and practices.
Not surprisingly, there are those in power who do not welcome NGOs and other
agents of peaceful, democratic change. After all, the work of NGOs may vary
widely, but what they all have in common is enabling individuals to come
together to create an independent voice distinct from, and at times in
disagreement with, the government's views.
Mr. Chairman, I experience this every day as Assistant Secretary when I meet
with NGOs who want to discuss the U.S. Government's human rights record here
and abroad. I often agree with NGOs. At times, I disagree with them. But I
never view them as a threat to our democratic way of life. Indeed, their
contribution to our debate on America's role in the world can only strengthen
our democratic ideals at home and advance them abroad.
Other governments, however, feel threatened by their work. In many countries,
we see disturbing attempts to intimidate NGOs and restrict or shut them down.
The recent assessment of the National Endowment for Democracy captures this
growing challenge. The conclusions are sobering. States are developing and
using tools to subvert, suppress and silence these organizations. They invoke
or create restrictive laws and regulations. They impose burdensome registration
and tax requirements. Charges are vague, such as "disturbing social order," and
implementation and enforcement are arbitrary, fostering a climate of
self-censorship and fear. Governments play favorites, deeming NGOs "good" or
"bad", and they treat them accordingly. NGOs deemed "good" are often ones
created by governments themselves -- Government Organized NGOs or "GONGOs." The
Tunisian government established a GONGO staffed by members of its intelligence
service to attend conferences and monitor what is being said about the
government. China sends GONGOs to UN NGO functions to defend China's human
When states find that their efforts to pass or apply restrictive laws and
regulations against NGOs are not enough, they resort to extralegal forms of
intimidation or persecution. Often these regimes justify their actions by
accusations of treason, espionage, subversion, foreign interference or
terrorism. These are rationalizations; the real motivation is political. This
is not about defending their citizens from harm, this is about protecting
positions of power.
From Russia to China, Zimbabwe to Venezuela, no region has been spared this
push-back. Mr. Chairman, we can point to individual cases unique to each
country. A key impetus for the recent crackdown has been reaction by many
rulers to the "Color Revolutions" of 2003-2005. They believed that the popular
pressure for change was instigated and directed from abroad through U.S and
other foreign support for NGOs on the ground. They have not grasped that the
"Color Revolutions" were examples of citizens standing up for their right to
free elections and demanding accountability when election results did not
reflect the clear will of the people because of manipulation.
During my trip to Moscow in early January, the deep suspicion that Western
states had manipulated election outcomes was evident from my discussions with
officials and lawmakers. Our promotion of democracy is seen as part of a
zero-sum game of geopolitical influence. I emphasized to my Russian
interlocutors that they were fundamentally mistaken about what happened in
Ukraine and Georgia, that our NGO funding and activities there were
transparent, fully in keeping with the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe's and other international norms, and designed to help
ensure that elections are free and fair, not to pick winners and losers.
After he had signed the restrictive new NGO law in January, Russian President
Putin acknowledged that NGOs can and do contribute to the well-being of
society, but he added that their financing must be transparent and efforts to
control them by "foreign puppeteers" would not be tolerated. The new Russian
law has the potential to cripple the vital work of many NGOs, including foreign
NGOs there to support the local NGOs, and could retard Russia's democratic
development. The new law is now in effect. Recently, the Russian Ministry of
Justice issued extensive implementing regulations along with dozens of forms
for NGOs to complete. These detailed reporting requirements on NGOs' financial
and programmatic activities allow for broad review and oversight by Russian
officials that could go beyond international norms. The authorities have wide
discretion to implement the law. The authorities can request various documents
and information or attend any NGO event to verify that an organization's
activities comply with the goals expressed in its founding documents. Foreign
NGOs appear to be singled out for even more extensive reporting requirements,
including quarterly financial reports and annual reporting on planned
activities, subject to review by authorities. Officials could order a foreign
NGO to cease funding a particular program, ban the NGO from transferring funds
to certain recipients or shut it down completely. While we are told such
measures would be subject to court approval, this could entail lengthy and
expensive litigation that could cripple an NGO.
The Russian government has claimed that the new NGO law is similar to U.S. and
other Western regulations regarding civil society. As a basis for that claim,
the Russian Federation's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has posted an unattributed
chart on its website comparing selected provisions from the new NGO law with
the laws of the United States, France, Finland, Israel and Poland. An NGO
called The International Center for Not-for-Profit Law has done a careful
analysis of the chart and the laws of the various countries cited and has found
the contrary. According to this center of legal expertise, the Russian law is
"substantially different from the laws of the selected countries" and is
actually "more restrictive", both in terms of the specific provisions of the
Russian law and in its cumulative effect. We continue to urge the Russian
government to implement the new law in a way that facilitates, not hinders, the
vital work of NGOs and is in compliance with Russia's international
Russia is not the only country where NGOs face serious challenges. In Belarus,
the Lukashenko government increasingly uses tax inspections and new
registration requirements to complicate or deny the ability of NGOs,
independent media, political parties, and minority and religious organizations
to operate legally. All but a handful of human rights NGOs have been
deregistered or denied registration. In February, Belarussian KGB spokesman
Valeriy Nadtochayev stated: "Such political events inside our country as
elections attract the attention of foreign secret services, diplomats, and
representatives of various non-governmental organizations and foundations like
magnets. All of them are united by a common task involving the collection of
biased information about events in our country and the creation of newsbreaks,
especially those connected with so-called human rights violations "
The Chinese government applies burdensome requirements to groups attempting to
register as NGOs. They must first find a government agency sponsor before they
can register with the Ministry of Civil Affairs. NGOs must have more than fifty
individual members -- a Catch 22 situation since hosting such large gatherings
without a license can lead to official persecution. This means that groups that
do not have adequate government ties have no hope of meeting legal requirements
to register. The financial requirement of $12,000 makes it difficult for many
nascent, cash-strapped organizations to register. Moreover, sponsoring agencies
and the Ministry of Civil Affairs can refuse applications without cause or
The government closely scrutinizes NGOs working in areas that might challenge
its authority or have implications for social stability, such as groups focused
on human rights and discrimination. It is more amenable to groups that it sees
as supporting social welfare efforts rather than operating in a political role.
In this context, some NGOs are able to develop their own agendas and, in some
cases, even undertake limited advocacy roles in public interest areas like
women's issues, the environment, health, and consumer rights.
The Chinese government studied the role that NGOs ostensibly played in the
"Color Revolutions" and ordered an investigation into the activities of both
foreign and domestic NGOs in China. The government also established a task
force to monitor the activities of NGOs, especially those with links overseas.
In Venezuela, the leadership of the electoral watchdog NGO Sumate awaits trial
on charges of conspiracy and treason for accepting a $31,150 grant from the NED
for voter education and outreach activities consistent with the International
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. While Sumate is the most well known
target of harassment by the Venezuelan government, it is not alone. The
government continues to restrict the ability of NGOs to conduct their
activities and to cut off sources of international support for their work.
In May 2005, Eritrea issued an NGO Administration Proclamation that imposes
taxes on aid, restricts NGOS to relief and rehabilitation work, increases
reporting requirements for foreign and local organizations and limits
international agencies from directly funding local NGOs. All NGOs must meet
demanding annual registration requirements. The few local NGOs that are allowed
to register also face new funding barriers. In a televised speech last
November, Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki stated: "In many cases, spy
agencies of big and powerful countries use NGOs as smokescreens." In March
2006, in the midst of a devastating drought, Eritrea expelled the U.S.-based
humanitarian NGO Mercy Corps, the Irish NGO Concern and the British NGO Accord.
In March 2005, the Ethiopian government expelled IRI, NDI and IFES shortly
after their arrival in advance of the May national legislative and regional
council elections. The three organizations had never before been expelled from
any country. They had made numerous attempts to register with the government.
The government cited "technical difficulties related to their accreditation and
registration" as reasons for the expulsions.
Blatantly disregarding the welfare of its people, the concerns of its neighbors
and the call of the United Nations, the regime in Burma has not eased, it has
increased, restrictions on UN agencies and international NGOs doing
humanitarian work in Burma, particularly in ethnic areas. For example, Medecíns
Sans Frontiéres was forced to close its French Section that was responsible for
programs in the conflict-ridden Mon and Karen states. As the manager of the
French Section put it: "It appears the Burmese authorities do not want anyone
to witness the abuses they are committing against their own people."
The cases I mentioned are only a few examples what I call rule by law -- of
governments seeking to control, restrict or shut down the work of NGOs by
appropriating the language of law and the instruments and institutions of
democracy. When states wield the law as a political weapon or an instrument of
repression against NGOs, they rule by law rather than upholding the rule of
law. The rule of law acts as a check on state power; it is a system designed to
protect the human rights of the individual against the power of the state. In
contrast, rule by law can be an abuse of power -- the manipulation of the law,
the judicial system and other governmental bodies to maintain the power of the
rulers over the ruled.
To suppress the work of NGOs, states also employ more blatant forms of
persecution. Since the uprising and violent suppression in Andijan, Uzbekistan
in May 2005, the government has harassed, beaten and jailed dozens of human
rights activists and independent journalists, sentenced numerous people to
prison following trials that did not meet international standards, forced many
domestic and international NGOs to close, including Freedom House. Those that
continue to operate are severely restricted. Local NGO employees have been
convicted of criminal offenses for their work making it virtually impossible
for them to find other jobs.
The Sudanese government's obstruction of humanitarian assistance and support
for civil society has severely hampered relief efforts in Darfur. Domestic and
international NGOs and humanitarian organizations are constantly harassed and
overburdened with paperwork. The Sudanese government has expelled international
NGO and humanitarian personnel, delayed their visas, and placed restrictions on
their travel inside Darfur. Sudanese police and security forces have arrested,
threatened and physically harmed NGO and humanitarian workers. In April 2006,
the Sudanese government expelled the Norwegian Refugee Council from Kalma Camp,
the largest internally displaced persons camp in Darfur with over 90,000
internally displaced persons. Prior to its expulsion, the Norwegian Refugee
Council had served for two years as the Kalma "camp coordinator", in charge of
coordinating all humanitarian programs and protection for the camp's residents
and serving as a liaison for community leaders, government officials,
humanitarian agencies, and African Union peacekeepers. On May 31, the South
Darfur State Security Committee approved an agreement allowing the Council to
return as camp coordinator. Nevertheless, Sudanese government obstructionism
caused Darfur's largest IDP camp to go without a camp coordinator for two
months, during which time insecurity and tension rose.
The last remaining civil society discussion group in Syria, the Jamal al-Atassi
Forum, has been prevented from meeting for almost a year and many of its
members have been arrested or intimidated into silence. The Forum is a
predominantly secular group encouraging dialogue among political parties and
civil society to promote reform.
We are concerned that the situation in Egypt for politically active NGOs is
deteriorating. For example, last week Egyptian civil society activists Mohammed
el-Sharkawi and Karim Shaer were beaten and arrested for participating in
demonstrations in support of the independence of the judiciary. Reportedly,
they were subsequently tortured while in custody and denied medical treatment.
International democracy NGOs active in Egypt are also facing increasing
What We and other Democracies Can Do to Defend and Support NGOs
Mr. Chairman, in today's world, the problems confronting states are too complex
even for the most powerful states to tackle alone. The contributions of NGOs
are crucial in addressing a host of domestic and international challenges.
Restricting the political space of NGOs only limits a society's own political
and economic growth. A strong nation fosters the development of NGOs and other
elements of a vibrant civil society; a state that tries to control everything
from the center becomes brittle. A society that allows broad participation by
its citizens in national life is a society that will flourish from the
contributions of its own people.
When NGOs are under siege, freedom and democracy are undermined. How then can
we best support and defend the work of NGOs in countries across the globe?
The United States must continue to stand up for what President Bush calls "the
non-negotiable demands of human dignity" and that includes the exercise by
individuals of their rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly
through their membership in NGOs.
As we monitor and report on conditions for human rights and democracy in
countries worldwide, we in DRL, our posts overseas, and the State Department
generally must sharpen our focus on the increasing pressures governments are
putting on NGOs. We must think creatively about how we might help to open
political space for NGOs and create opportunities for NGOs and their
governments to exchange views in an honest and constructive manner. We must
ensure that a government's treatment of NGOs is an element in our bilateral
dialogue and that it factors into the decisions we make on developing our
Mr. Chairman, we need to defend human rights and democracy promotion. To do so,
we need to defend the defenders. In short, we need to push back. Let me suggest
First, we need to speak out. We must be prepared to counter what I call the NGO
"Legal Equivalency" argument made by governments that unduly restrict NGOs,
namely that since all countries regulate NGO activity in some fashion,
criticism is unwarranted. For example, there is a difference between giving
NGOs the opportunity to register for non-tax status, and demanding that NGOs
register to simply function. Most countries, including ours, only require
notification of registration, not permission from authorities, in order to
operate as a formal, legal entity.
We must not succumb to arguments that the prime reason that governments which
impose burdensome registration and other reporting requirements on NGOs is to
combat terrorism or other criminal behavior. All governments have a
responsibility to protect their populations from acts of terrorism and crime,
and it is of course appropriate to subject NGOs to the same laws and
requirements generally applicable to all individuals and organizations. At the
end of day, however, a burdensome registration and reporting process is
unlikely to sway determined terrorist organizations, but very likely to weaken
We must counter false charges that US activities tied to NGOs are led covertly
by the United States and other democracies. We must reiterate that our support
is out in the open and that thousands of NGOs never even approach our
government. And when they do, it is more likely than not that they are pressing
us on our own behavior, or on individual cases, and not soliciting funding.
Second, we need to ensure that NGO protection is an integral part of our
diplomacy. We must highlight the protection of NGOs as a legitimate issue on
our government-to-government agenda. This spring, when Russian Foreign Minister
Lavrov came to Washington, Secretary Rice had an extensive discussion with him
on our NGO concerns, a discussion in which I participated. The Secretary raises
our concerns in her bilateral meetings as do I and many of my colleagues at the
State Department. When I travel, I insist on seeing NGO representatives, as
does the Secretary.
We must also continue to multiply our voices. Time and again NGOs have told me
that their work would be further protected if others would join us. Russian
NGOs were heartened that, just prior to my arrival in Moscow in January, German
Chancellor Merkel paid an official visit and not only spoke out in defense of
NGOs but met with them to hear first-hand their concerns. In the case of China,
my Bureau has taken the initiative to develop a coordinated approach among all
members of the so-called Bern process -- the process that brings together all
countries which have human rights dialogues with China. We meet twice yearly,
to exchange lists of political prisoners, to compare best practices, and to
monitor Chinese behavior toward NGOs.
Third, we must expand the role of regional organizations in protecting NGOs.
Acting in defense and support of NGOs on a bilateral basis is essential, but it
is not sufficient. NGOs are a global phenomenon; they are facing pressures in
countries in every region. I believe that there is greater scope for us to
partner with leading regional democracies and to work with regional
organizations to defend and support the work of NGOs.
The OSCE and the European Union have adopted some of the most advanced
provisions regarding the role and rights of NGOs, as well as guidelines on how
they can interact and participate in OSCE and EU activities. In the OSCE
context, the role of NGOs in pressing for adherence to democratic standards and
practices including monitoring elections remains vital. We will do all we can
to ensure that the defense and promotion of human rights and democratic
principles remain central to OSCE's mandate. Every quarter I hold consultations
with the EU on a host of human rights and democracy issues worldwide. These
consultations are also a good vehicle to take up the cause of NGO protection.
The OAS has formal structures for NGO participation and Secretary General
Insulza has said that he seeks greater engagement by civil society
organizations. Last month, I held a roundtable with a diverse group of NGOs
from Latin America. The NGOs were in Washington to attend an OAS ministerial.
We intend to build on that dialogue: through the OAS and among the NGOs
themselves as they press for implementation of the OAS Democratic Charter.
NGO engagement with the African Union remains limited. However, prior to the AU
Heads of State Summit July 1-2 in Banjul, the AU will host a Civil Society
Forum and a Women's Forum. Later this year I hope to travel to Addis Ababa to
meet with the AU and place protection of NGOs on our agenda
ASEAN has formal guidelines for NGO participation in its activities. To date,
the NGOs affiliated with ASEAN do not tend to have a democracy or human rights
focus, but operate in other fields such as business and medicine. ASEAN's
recent steps to press the regime in Burma is an encouraging sign that countries
in the region are beginning to recognize that the protection of human rights,
and of human rights defenders, is a legitimate issue, and not one to be
dismissed as interference in the sovereignty of its neighbors. We will
encourage ASEAN to take further steps on this path.
Fourth, we must maximize global opportunities to raise concerns about the
treatment of NGOs and take coordinated action in their defense. We will work to
that end with like-minded members of the new U.N. Human Rights Council. I would
note that in negotiating the creation of the Council, the United States
successfully insisted that NGOs must retain the same access to the new body
that they had to its predecessor.
The UN Democracy Fund, proposed by President Bush in September 2004 and
launched in September 2005, is another important instrument for supporting
NGOs. The Fund will support projects implemented by NGOs as well as
governmental and multilateral entities. Recognizing the important contributions
that NGOs make, the designers of the Democracy Fund ensured that two of the 17
members of the Fund's Advisory Board are NGO representatives. To date, 19
countries have contributed or pledged approximately $50 million to this
voluntary Fund. The United States has contributed $17.9 million to date, and
the President's Budget has requested an additional $10 million to support the
Fund in FY 2007. We have successfully pushed for the Fund to focus on support
for NGOs and other elements of civil society in states transitioning to
democracy, complementing existing UN programs on free and fair elections and
the rule of law.
The Community of Democracies and the collective action of its members can be an
important focal point within the international community and international
organizations in helping sustain and protect NGOs across the globe. The time
has come to institutionalize the Community itself, and to use its members to
press for fundamental freedoms, including with regard to the protection of
Fifth, we must protect and nurture new organizations that allow NGOs to
flourish. Here let me single out the Middle East. The Forum for the Future was
established in the summer of 2004 at the G-8 Summit in Sea Island, Georgia. In
partnership with the countries of the Broader Middle East and North Africa, the
Forum seeks to advance political, economic, and educational reforms in the
region. From its inception, we have pressed for inclusion of NGOs indigenous to
the Middle East. At the first meeting of the Forum in Rabat in December 2004,
there were five NGOs. By the time I accompanied Secretary Rice to the second
meeting, held in Bahrain a year later, the five had grown to 40. At the
conference, leaders of these NGOs participated, pressing an agenda of political
reform, economic opportunity, educational advancement, and gender equality.
Among those serving on this civil society delegation in Bahrain were
representatives from the Democracy Assistance Dialogue (DAD) -- a dialogue led
by the Italy, Turkey, and Yemen as well as three NGOS from each country. The
DAD presented the outcomes of discussions and debates held over the course of
the year between civil society leaders and their government counterparts. The
growing DAD network includes hundreds of civil society leaders from the region.
The level and depth of civil society participation at the Forum was historic
and positive, and has set an important precedent for genuine dialogue and
partnership between civil society and governments on reform issues.
At Bahrain all the participating countries agreed to establish a Foundation for
the Future to help fund NGO activity. We did not agree on a Bahrain declaration
of principles, however, because a number of countries wanted to include in that
declaration language to constrain NGOs. In the end, the United Kingdom as G-8
co-sponsor that year, supported by us and others -- walked away from the
declaration. Our reason was simple: We could not cripple in the afternoon what
we had created in the morning. I applaud the host of the next Forum, Jordan,
for its unwavering commitment to a continued robust role for NGOs.
We are already acting in concert with the Jordanian government and others to
ensure that the NGO presence grows for the meeting this December.
Sixth, we must ensure that NGOs have the resources they need to carry out their
vital work. Many NGOs look to a variety of funding sources, both government and
private, to ensure a diverse support base. Many of them never approach the U.S.
government for any funding at all.
A number of private, grant-making foundations specialize in supporting the work
of other non-governmental organizations, and here I cite the MacArthur
Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Institute and other
well-known foundations. Organizations such as the independent, nonprofit Pew
Charitable Trusts, the International Crisis Group, the Carnegie Endowment for
International Peace and its Moscow Center often fund or produce reports on
topics which contribute to public policy discourse on the development of civil
society, conflict prevention and management, and other goals compatible with
advancing freedom and democracy. We must continue to encourage more private
We in government can often provide the needed seed money for democracy
promotion programs, or assistance to maintain on-going programs. This is a
dynamic process that adjusts to new demands, shifting priorities, and different
emphases. We must continue to seek out innovative solutions that merit our
support, for example, programs that monitor and publicize attacks on NGOs, much
as the MacArthur Foundation has funded the Berkman Center at Harvard University
to monitor worldwide constraints on internet freedom.
I also want to express my appreciation to the Congress for its support of the
Human Rights and Democracy Fund, a program managed by my Bureau. I call it the
"venture capital" of democracy promotion for it gives us the flexibility to
support innovative programming by NGOs targeted at key countries and issues. We
are able to make hundreds of grants a year to organizations around the world
addressing vital democracy and human rights issues.
All free nations have a stake in the strengthening of civil societies and the
spread of democratic government worldwide, and we welcome and encourage
contributions from other donor countries and institutions in support of the
work of NGOs.
Seventh, we should consider elaborating some guiding principles by which we as
a country would assess the behavior of other governments toward NGOs, and which
we would take into account in our bilateral relationships. I would welcome
consulting with Congress on the drafting of these principles. I would envision
a short list of principles -- no more than a page. They would be user-friendly
in non-legalistic language. The principles would proceed from the premise that
NGOs, as elements of a vibrant civil society, are essential to the development
and success of free societies and that they play a vital role in ensuring
accountable, democratic government. The principles should pass the
"reasonableness test" in any open society. We would pledge our own adherence to
the principles and we would of course encourage their embrace by other
countries as well.
I do not see these principles as being duplicative of other efforts. The best
word is still the plainspoken word, and in plainspoken words, these principles
would distill the basic commitments to the rights to freedom of expression,
association and assembly enshrined in such documents as: the U.N. Universal
Declaration on Human Rights and other international documents such as the
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, relevant International
Labor Organization Conventions, the Helsinki Final Act and subsequent OSCE
Copenhagen and Moscow documents, and the European Convention on Human Rights
and relevant documents of the Council of Europe.
Among the possible principles we could elaborate could be:
* That an individual should be permitted to form, join and participate in
NGOs of his or her choosing in peaceful exercise of his or her rights to
freedom of expression and assembly.
* That any restrictions which may be placed on the exercise of the rights to
freedom of expression and assembly must be consistent with international
* That governments will not take actions that prevent NGOs from carrying out
their peaceful work without fear of persecution, intimidation or
* That laws, administrative measures, regulations and procedures governing or
affecting NGOs should protect -- not impede -- their operation, and that
they should never be established or enforced for politically motivated
* That NGOs, like all other elements of a vibrant civil society, should be
permitted to seek and receive financial support from domestic, foreign and
* And perhaps the most important principle of all, that whenever NGOs are
under siege, it is imperative that democratic nations act to defend their
Mr. Chairman, Members of the Committee, in closing I cannot emphasize enough
the value of the continued active involvement of this Committee and of other
Members of Congress in the worldwide defense and support of the work of NGOs.
It greatly strengthens my hand when I meet with foreign officials to know that
I have your strong bipartisan backing. It is profoundly important that you
continue to demonstrate your support for NGOs and raise concerns about their
treatment to foreign governments. And any efforts you could make to encourage
your counterparts in the legislatures of other democracies to press these
issues and to work in concert on them would be extraordinarily helpful.
As President Bush has said: "Freedom, by its nature, must be chosen, and
defended by citizens, and sustained by the rule of law and the protection of
minorities. America will not impose our own style of government on the
unwilling. Our goal instead is to help others find their own voice, attain
their own freedom, and make their own way."
By America's leadership in supporting and defending the work of NGOs, that is
exactly what we are doing -- helping men and women across the globe shape their
own destinies in freedom, and by so doing, helping to build a safer, better
world for us all. Thank you.
See http://www.state.gov for Senior State Department
Official's statements and testimonies
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 10:17 am Post subject: Professor Ganji's letter To President Vladimir Putin
|Professor Manouchehr Ganji
Organization for Human Rights and
Fundamental Freedoms for Iran
(202) 338-1052 Facsimile
July 14, 2006
President Vladimir Putin
Dear Mr. President:
The G-8 Summit will soon be held in St. Petersburg, under your Presidency. As reported in the press, one of the topics of Agenda will be Iran. In that regard, as Secretary-General of The Organization for Human Rights in Iran, I take this opportunity to bring a very urgent and disturbing matter to your attention.
Mr. President, as you very well know, Sir, one of the main purposes of the G-8 and the United Nations is life - in the language of the UN Charter, "universal respect for the observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms" for all. Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, ratified by 154 UN Member states, including all the G-8 countries and Iran, states: "no one shall be subjected to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment..."
I humbly request from you and your distinguished colleagues at the Summit, Sir, to take a brief look at the attached footage of an official video put out by the Government of The Islamic Republic of Iran, and, in all fairness, decide for yourselves, how dreadful, gross and disturbing the human rights situation continues to be in Iran today. These gross and systematic violations have been taking place for twenty eight years in Iran. For the sake of history, please kindly note that through this letter and the attached video, the Organization for Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms for Iran, on behalf of the Iranian people, has once again officially brought the deteriorating situation of human rights in Iran to the attention of the distinguished leaders of the G8 countries.
Mr. President, in my humble opinion, in today's world, for the Heads of State of the major industrial democracies to know of the prevalence of such atrocious conditions and to refrain from doing anything against it, is indeed the travesty of justice. In view of the fact that the topic of Iran is for other reasons on top of the G8 Summit Agenda, I urge the Summit through your respectful Office to take appropriate actions in condemning these gross and systemic violations of human rights in Iran.
In anticipation of hearing from you, please accept, Mr. President, the assurances of my highest considerations.
PS: To view the footage of acts of stoning, plugging eyes, cutting arms, legs, floggings and the text of the Law of Vengeance and more please clique here [ http://www.iri-crimes.de and http://www.derafsh.org ].
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 8:48 pm Post subject: KNOW THY ENEMY - Both Within and Without
|KNOW THY ENEMY - Both Within and Without
|letter from Marine to antimullah.com wrote: |
Now we are told that the two kidnapped American soldiers had their genitals cut off and stuffed into their mouth. They were brutally beheaded. They were tortured unmercifully while still alive by the disciples of Allah, and I hear no words of outrage from the "left" today.
The mehod of killing described in this letter by Marine is similar to Dr. Fereydoun Farokhzad method of killing in 1992 by Islamist Regime Agents.
|Fereydoun Farokhzad wrote: |
|سخنانی از زنده یاد فریدون فرخزاد
Click On The Image To Listen To Him In Farsi
Fereydoun Farokhzad (PHD in Political Science) stabbed, beheaded, and his genital cut off and stuffed into his mouth with a knife on 8th August 1992, in Bonn, Germany by the order of clerical repressive corrupt fanatical regime. He was a great Entertainer and trained many great Iranian singers currently living in LA .
The EU3 Appeasers Silence Regarding Dr. Fereydoun Farokhzad Beheading with a knife on 8th August 1992, in Bonn, Germany by Islamist Taazi Regime Make Them As Guilty As Islamist Terror Masters.
We Do Not Forget and Forgive The Accepted Oil Contract Bribe By The EU3 Neo Colonialist Appeasers.
Joined: 26 Feb 2004
|Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 4:19 pm Post subject:
|Iran's execution of children
Iran has executed at least eight child offenders in 2005, according to the international human rights organization Amnesty International.
Amnesty International has recorded ten executions of child offenders in Iran since 1990, including Atefeh Rajabi, reportedly aged 16, who was hanged after a grossly unfair trial where doubts regarding her mental state appeared to have been ignored.
According to reports in November 2004, Vahid, aged 16, was sentenced to death for the murder of his friend, who allegedly tried to sexually abuse him.
Further press articles on 26 January 2005 reported that two other young men, Sattar (surname unknown), aged 17 and Mohammad T., a teenager whose sentence has been upheld by the Supreme Court, are both currently awaiting execution.
According to a 15 January 2005 report on the internet news site ILNA, at least 30 other individuals under the age of 18, who have been sentenced to death, are currently detained in a juvenile detention centre (Kanoun-e Eslah va Tarbiyat) in Tehran and Raja’i Shahr, a town close to Tehran.
Child executions in Iran
As a State party to the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), Iran has undertaken not to execute anyone for an offence committed when they were under the age of 18.
Article 6 of the ICCPR states: "Sentence of death shall not be imposed for crimes committed by persons below eighteen years of age”.
Article 37(a) of the CRC states: "No child shall be subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Neither capital punishment nor life imprisonment without possibility of release shall be imposed for offences committed by persons below eighteen years of age".
Nevertheless, Amnesty International has recorded 19 executions of child offenders in Iran since 1990. The first execution in 2006 of a child offender took place on 13 May in Khorrambad in Lorestan province when a 17-year old male was hanged. In 2005, at least 94 people were executed, including eight child offenders. These include:
· Iman Faroki was executed on 19 January for a crime he allegedly committed when he was 17 years old
· 18-year-old Ayaz M., and a child, Mahmoud A, were publicly hanged in Mashhad on 19 July. According to reports, they were convicted of sexual assault on a 13-year-old boy.
· An unnamed 17-year-old was among four men executed on 23 August in Bandar Abbas. They were convicted of kidnapping, rape, and theft.
· On 13 July, Ali Safarpour Rajabi was hanged for killing a police officer in Poldokhtar. He had been sentenced to death in February 2002 when he was 17 years old for a crime committed when he may have been only 16 years old.
· Farshid Farighi, aged 21, was hanged in prison in the city of Bandar Abbas. He was convicted of five murders, reportedly carried out between the ages of 14 and 16.
· On 12 September, a 22-year-old convicted of rape was publicly hanged in the southern province of Fars. He had reportedly been sentenced to death in 2000, suggesting that he was under the age of 18 when the crime was committed.
· On 10 December Rostam Tajik was publicly executed in a park in the city of Esfahan, central Iran He had reportedly been sentenced to qisas (retribution specified by the victim's family) by the General Court of Esfahan for a murder committed in May 2001 when he was 16 years old.
Death sentences are required to be upheld by the Supreme Court before executions can take place. At least forty child offenders are believed to have been sentenced to death and to be awaiting execution in Iran. Very few details of death sentences imposed within Iran are available, but here are some examples of cases which have come to the attention of Amnesty International:
· Ne'mat, a 17-year-old boy, is facing imminent execution for murder. He was sentenced to death by a Criminal Court in Esfahan, after he confessed to killing his sister's husband in a fight. His sentence has been upheld by the Supreme Court in around April 2006.
· 18-year-old Nazanin was sentenced to death for murder by a criminal court on 3 Januay 2006, after she reportedly admitted stabbing to death one of three men who attempted to rape her and her niece in a park in Karaj in March 2005. She was 17 at the time. During her trial, she reportedly told the court “I wanted to defend myself and my niece. I did not want to kill that boy. At the heat of the moment I did not know what to do because no one came to our help”.At the end of May the Supreme Court rejected the death sentence against Nazanin, reportedly on the instructions of the Head of the Judiciary, Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi. The case will reportedly be retried and sent to a to a lower court for further investigation.
· At the beginning of January 2006 the Supreme Court rejected the appeal of 19-year-old Delara Darabi, who was sentenced to death by a court in the city of Rasht for a murder committed when she was 17 years old. Delara Darabi initially confessed to the murder, but subsequently retracted her confession and stated that she had admitted responsibility for the murder at the request of her co-accused, to help him escape execution, because he believed that she would not be sentenced to death because she was under 18 at the time of the murder. She said that she was under the influence of sedatives during the burglary. Her lawyer is reportedly appealing the decision.
· In March 2006, 18-year-old Mehdi was reportedly sentenced to death for killing a man in Robat Karim, Tehran Province, about two years previously, when he was aged either 16 or 17. His brother was imprisoned for his involvement in the killing.
Mohammad Mousavi (m) aged 18, was sentenced to death for a murder allegedly committed when he was 16. The sentence has been upheld by the Supreme Court and it is feared that he is at risk of imminent execution.
Hamid Reza (m) is reported to be at risk of execution for a murder allegedly committed when he was 14 years old.
On 9 December, the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, Philip Alston, called on the Iranian authorities not to proceed with the execution of Rostam Tajik, stating "At a time when virtually every other country in the world has firmly and clearly renounced the execution of people for crimes they committed as children, the Iranian approach is particularly unacceptable … It is all the more surprising because the obligation to refrain from such executions is not only clear and incontrovertible, but the Government of Iran has itself stated that it will cease this practice.”
Amnesty International calls for Iran to stop executing child offenders and abide by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) to which it is a state party; and urges the Iranian authorities to take immediate steps to halt and abolish the imposition of the death penalty for crimes committed by persons under 18.
Girl, 19, To Hang in Iran
July 23, 2006
A girl of 19 faces being hanged in Iran for a crime she didn't commit. Delara Darabi was just 17 when her boyfriend, Amir Hossein, persuaded her to confess to a murder he committed.
Believing she was saving him from execution and that she would be freed because of her youth, she told a judge she had broken into a house and killed a woman.
Hossein, 19, was jailed for 10 years. Now human rights group Amnesty International has launched a campaign to free Delara, whose last-ditch appeal begins next month.
Spokesman Neil Durkin said: "We want Sunday Mirror readers to add their voices to the 2,000 appeals already sent by our members to the Iranian authorities."
Iran has signed an international treaty promising not to execute minors. Instead it imprisons them until they are 18 before ordering their deaths. To protest see www.amnesty.org.uk .
Iran, Last executor of child offenders
AI Index: MDE 13/053/2006
Date: 19 May 2006
Last executor of child offenders: Amnesty International condemns the first reported execution of a child offender in 2006
In the wake of the first reported execution of a child offender in 2006, Amnesty International expressed its dismay that Iran should be the only country that currently executes child offenders- those under the age of 18 at the time of their offence.
Amnesty International said that the world is in complete agreement that the execution of a person for a crime committed when they were under 18 years of age is unacceptable. During the last decade, the judicial killing of children has all but stopped. Only a handful of countries now threaten to carry out such executions and in 2005 Iran was the only country to do so after it lost its main ally on this issue: the United States of America.
By carrying out the execution of a child offender, Iran is in violation of international law and its obligations under the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).
The organization expressed its deep concern for the many other child offenders reported to be under sentence of death in Iran, and called on the Iranian government to take immediate steps to prohibit capital punishment for offences committed by persons below 18 years of age, and stop executing child offenders.
On 13 May 2006, an unnamed 17-year old male and an unnamed 20-year old male were executed by hanging in Khorramabad, the capital of Lorestan province. According to reports, they were sentenced to death for the rape and murder of a 12-year old boy, and were tried in an extraordinary session.
This is the first known execution of a child offender in 2006. In 2005 Amnesty International recorded eight executions of child offenders in Iran, including 2 who were under the age of 18 at the time of their execution. The execution is particularly alarming in light of reports that many other child offenders have been sentenced to death in Iran, and are awaiting execution.
· 18-year old Nazanin Mahabad Fatehi (f) was sentenced to death after she reportedly admitted stabbing to death one of three men who attempted to rape her and her niece in a park in Karaj in March 2005. She was 17 at the time. During her trial, she reportedly told the court "I wanted to defend myself and my niece. I did not want to kill that boy. At the heat of the moment I did not know what to do because no one came to our help".
· Ne'mat, a 17-year-old boy, is facing imminent execution for murder. He was sentenced to death by a Criminal Court in Esfahan, after he confessed to killing his sister's husband in a fight. In April 2006 it was reported that his sentence had been upheld by the Supreme Court
· At the beginning of January 2006 the Supreme Court rejected the appeal of 19-year-old Delara Darabi (f), who was sentenced to death by a court in the city of Rasht for a murder committed when she was 17. Delara Darabi initially confessed to the murder, but subsequently retracted her confession. She stated that she had admitted responsibility for the murder at the request of her 19-year old co-accused, to help him escape execution, because he mistakenly believed that she could not be sentenced to death as she was under 18 at the time.
· In March 2006, 18-year-old Mehdi (m) was reportedly sentenced to death for killing a man in Robat Karim, Tehran Province, about two years previously, when he was aged either 16 or 17. His brother was imprisoned for his involvement in the killing.
· Mohammad Mousavi (m) aged 18, was sentenced to death for a murder allegedly committed when he was 16. The sentence has been upheld by the Supreme Court and it is feared that he is at risk of imminent execution.
· Hamid Reza (m) is reported to be at risk of execution for a murder allegedly committed when he was 14 years old.
Amnesty International recognizes the rights and responsibilities of governments to bring to justice those suspected of committing recognizably criminal offences, but the organization is unconditionally opposed to the use of the death penalty as the ultimate violation of the right to life.
For approximately four years, it has been reported that the Iranian authorities have been considering passing legislation to ban the imposition of the death penalty for offences committed by persons who were under the age of 18 at the time of their crime. However, comments by a judiciary spokesperson suggest that the new law would in any case only prohibit the death penalty for certain crimes when committed by children. He stated that "qisas" crimes (crimes which carry a sentence of ‘retribution’, for example murder) were a private, not a state matter.
In its Concluding Observations to Iran’s second periodic report to the Committee of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in January 2005, the Committee noted that the Iranian delegation had stated, in the course of the public consideration of Iran's report, that Iran had suspended executions of persons who had committed crimes before the age of 18.
It is time for the Iranian government to live up to its promises. The first known execution of a child offender in 2006 underlines the urgent necessity that the government impose an immediate moratorium on the use of the death penalty, and pass without delay legislation that prohibits the execution of child offenders.
Joined: 26 Feb 2004
|Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 4:26 pm Post subject:
|Ramin Etebar, MD"
To: "Ramin Etebar, MD"
Subject: Please Sign the Petition to Stop Stoning of Ashraf Kalhori
Date: Wed, 26 Jul 2006 00:00:39 -0700
As an Iranian lawyer and a human rights defender, I am writing to you to ask you to help me save the life of a woman sentenced to death by stoning! Asharf Kalhori, who is currently in Evin prison in Tehran, is scheduled to be stoned to death by the end of July 2006 for the crime of having "sex".
I am voluntarily representing Ashraf, the mother of four children of ages 9 to 19 to save her from stoning. She had an extramarital affair because she never loved her husband, but her request for divorce had been rejected by the court based on the fact that she had children and, therefore, had to resume living with her husband. Therefore, some women whose divorce requests are denied opt for extramarital affairs.
If you believe that stoning is not an appropriate punishment for a woman having sex with a man other than her husband, if you believe that having sex is not a crime and does not turn a person into a criminal, and if you believe that Ahsraf Kalhori does not deserve to die for having had sex, then please express your opposition to stoning.
Your voice counts! I am asking you to please raise your voice against stoning Ashraf Kalhori by signing the petition addressed to the Iranian Head of the Judiciary and the Iranian Parliament representatives. We can save Ashraf's life and, furthermore, together demand a ban on stoning for ever!
Please sign this petition and let the Iranian Head of Judiciary and the Iranian Parliament know that there exists grand opposition to stoning women for having sex, and that we all appose stoning as the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.
Please forward this letter to others who may be interested.
Attorney at Law
Petition to save Ashraf Kalhori from death by stoning
To: The Judiciary Chief of Iran
Cc: The Iranian Parliament Representatives
We are deeply concerned that Ashraf Kalhori, a 37-year-old mother of four, has been sentenced to death for having had an extramarital relationship.
We are further concerned that she has been sentenced to death by stoning. Death by stoning is one of the most inhumane acts of torturous execution, where the convict is buried alive in a pit with her sheet-covered head exposed outside to be smashed by marble-sized rocks that are thrown by the members of the community.
We would like to remind you that as the chief of the Islamic Republic of Iran's Judiciary, you have ordered a ban on the execution of all cases of stoning as of April, 2001. Hereby, we request that you use your authority as the Judiciary Chief, to enforce such ban and stop the execution of Ashraf Kalhori.
At the same time, we are asking the Iranian Parliament representatives to change the criminal law so that an extramarital relationship is not considered a "crime" and that it certainly does not warrant the death penalty.
View Current Signatures
Joined: 22 Jul 2004
|Posted: Mon Jul 31, 2006 12:37 pm Post subject: The Entire Iran must cry for AKBAR MOHAMMADI
|cyrus wrote: |
|Lets Celebrate The New Symbol Of Resistance, Freedom
and Secular Democracy Activist Akbar Mohammadi
Who Murdered By Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist Occupiers Of Iran
To: All Freedom-Loving Iranian Compatriots (Right, Left and Center)
A Plea for Actions and Protest Against Injustice and Crimes Against Humanity By Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist Occupiers Of Iran: Lets Celebrate The Birth Of New Symbol Of Resistance and Freedom , Pro Free Society and Secular Democracy Activist Akbar Mohammadi
With our heartfelt condolences to family of Akbar Mohammadi, today all Iranian people are responsible to pay respect to our new Symbol Of Resistance and Freedom Akbar Mohammadi and protest.
We urged all freedom-loving Iranians both inside and outside Iran to participate in protest for freeing our homeland from Evil Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist occupiers of Iran to avoid another disaster and adventure of war by Islamofascist, if we the people can not Free Iran from Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist forces we should expect another major war soon, possible destruction of Iran like Lebanon in near future, the choice is ours to decide for actions and try our best to Free Iran before a new War starts.
What Can We Do NOW?
- If you live outside Iran lets Celebrate The Birth Of New Symbol Of Resistance and Freedom Akbar Mohammadi By participating in Akbar Mohammadi Memorial and Protest Against Islamofascist and Hezbollah Anywhere Every Week Until the Falls of Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist Occupiers Of Iran.
- If you live outside Iran participate in protest against Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist occupiers of Iran, educate and increase public awareness regarding injustice, free society and Secular Democracy .
- If you are living in North of Iran Visit and pay respect to the new Iranian Symbol of resistance Akbar Mohammadi Tomb in Amol, Iran
- If you live in Azarbijan visit Persian Hero Babak Khorramdin Castle to commemorate Persian national hero and his fellow warriors in their awesome fort of Babak. Babak was the leader of the Khorram-dinân, a nationalist group that rose against the invasion of Iran by Arabs, following the execution of Abu Muslim, who had rebelled against the Arab rules. Babak led a new revolt against the Arabs that was sacrificed his life for the liberation of his country from tyrant invaders in 837. ( http://activistchat.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=8175 )
- If you live in south visit and pay respect to Cyrus The Great Tomb and Zahra Kazemi Tomb in Shiraz
- If you live in west Of Iran visit and pay respect to Ferdowsi and Khayyam Tomb
- If you live in East Of Iran visit and pay respect to Avicenna (Ibn Sina) Tomb
- If you live in Tehran visit and pay respect to executed freedom-loving Political Prisoners grave or Iranian Air Force Top Gun Hero General Ayat Mohagheghi
- If you have military training protect Iranian people protest against Islamofascist forces by any means.
- If you are old and as a family tradition praying to god then please pray in the direction Cyrus The Great Tomb not Mecca and ask for downfall of Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist Occupiers Of Iran
- If .....
- Our actions must continue until the Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist Occupiers Of Iran is removed from power.
Leadership and International Condemnation:
The death in custody of a well-known Iranian Pro Free Society and Secular Activist has brought leadership and international condemnation.
1) Message Of Majesty Shahbanoo Farah Pahlavi To Mohammadi’s Family: http://www.farahpahlavi.org/akbarmo.html
2) Prince Reza Pahlavi’s Message on the Murder of Jailed Dissident:
“Seven long and terrible years of torture, abuse and maltreatment, tragically ended yesterday for our courageous compatriot, Akbar Mohammadi, with his murder at the hands of his jailers, who carried out the execution order issued by the security apparatus of the criminal clerical regime.
Akbar Mohammadi was a prominent student dissident and among the most courageous and important symbols of constitutional monarchists, who, in spite of the deafening silence of many among our opposition and diaspora, bravely endured untold sacrifices, spearheading our struggle against the evil autocracy called the Islamic Republic.
Akbar’s name will forever be inscribed in the annals of our history, highlighting our people’s struggle in general, and that of the students’ movement in particular. His courage, dedication and ultimate sacrifice will serve as a beacon lighting our way in our fight for liberty!
I share the grief of this tragic loss with his family and offer my heartfelt condolences to my compatriots, in particular to all his peers and friends in Iran and around the world.
May his soul rest in peace, while we continue where he left us!”
3) Sean McCormack, Spokesman Of US State Dept. :
“The United States condemns the Iranian government’s severe repression of dissidents, and its continued crackdown on civil society and those fighting for personal freedom in Iran. The regime’s actions resulted in the recent death of imprisoned Iranian student activist Akbar Mohammadi. Mr. Mohammadi died on July 30, reportedly as a result of a prolonged hunger strike, still in the notorious Evin Prison where he has been held for his role in pro-democracy student demonstrations in July 1999. Unfortunately, Mr. Mohammadi’s detention was not an isolated case.”
4) Sarah Leah Whitson, director of the Middle East and North Africa division at Human Rights Watch:
"Every death in custody must be investigated. But the failure to prosecute anyone for Kazemi's death underlines the need for an independent inquiry into Mohammadi's death."
5) AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE:
Amnesty International is alarmed at reports indicating that following an inspection of Akbar Mohammadi’s detention conditions by senior officials he was administered a drug which may have resulted not only in his tranquillisation but possibly, as a result of a complication, his death.
Akbar Mohammadi’s parents arrived Airport in Tehran on Tuesday 1 August 2006, at 02:30 local time, from a visit outside the country. They were forcibly taken directly from the aircraft to awaiting vehicles and driven directly to their house in Amol, northern Iran. They were denied permission to see the body of their deceased son, as was his brother Manuchehr, who remains in Evin prison. At the time of writing, there are reports that the body of Akbar Mohammadi has been buried.
A Plea For Support , Demonstration and Memorial Attendance from all Freedom-Loving Activists around the world in our united fight against Terrorists, Islamofascists, and Fanaticism!
This is an invitation to join together in a worldwide demonstration against the Mafia Mullahs, Terrorists, Islamofascists, and Fanatics who intend to stop and kill the spread of FREEDOM, SECULARISM & DEMOCRACY around the World! Our unified presence in a worldwide demonstration will be the biggest blow to the Mafia Mullahs.
If you are against GENOCIDE,
If you are against TERRORISM,
If you are against FANATICS,
If you are against the MAFIA MULLAHS,
If you are against ISLAMOFASCISTS,
If you are against ALL HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS,
If your family has been victimized by any act of terrorism (Sept 11th Terror Attacks, Terrorism in Europe, Middle East, Asia and throughout the world), please bring a picture of your loved one/s to the demonstration.
If your family has been victimized by the Islamist Mafia Regime in Iran or is a family member of one of the over 150,000 freedom-loving political prisoners, torture victims, or Iranians who have been executed in the past 27 years, please bring a picture of your loved one/s to the demonstration.
If you oppose all terrorism and acts of violence against those who wish to live in freedom, then your support and unity with the Iranian people should not be based on whether you are a democrat, republican, libertarian, conservative, independent, green, left, right, or center, but should be based only on your belief that the destiny of the human race is freedom and the unending pursuit of our wishes and our dreams.
Freedom-loving Iranians and people of the world invite you to participate in one of the scheduled demonstrations, which are part of an overall offensive that is being launched against the Islamic Mafia Master's of Terror, who currently hold the Iranian people and much of the world hostage. Together we will destroy this fanatical virus that threatens to destroy all we have fought, suffered, and lived for, for so long! Our destiny is nothing less than absolute freedom, an end to political imprisonment, and the death of theocratic regimes everywhere!
What Should We Do Everyday?
1- Pass this information to others by any available means and ask them to participate and let them know tomorrow is too late.
2- Allocate at least one hour each day to work for freeing our homeland, Please don't expect and wait for groups or leadership and what others should do for freeing our homeland, take your own initiative and actions based on your specialty, experience and what you are willing to do to help freeing our homeland. Please do something that when disaster happens at least you can look at yourself in the mirror and say you have done everything in your power and your share to avoid the disaster....
How Can We Become Iranian?
It is the irony of history that in the land of Cyrus The Great, the birthplace of the first charter of the “Rights of Nations” and the “Declaration of Human Rights” over 2500 years ago, there is today no respect for human and civil rights by Pro Hezbollah Islamofascist occupiers of Iran. Cyrus, who was exceptionally tolerant of local religions and local customs and against slavery, is famous for freeing the 42,000 Jewish captives and allowing them to return to their homeland. His name appears twenty two times in the Bible. Were it not for Cyrus, it seems at least possible that the Jewish people would have become extinct in the fifth century BC and we would have never received their great contributions to mankind. Unfortunately, present day Iran is ruled by a small group of Islamic Mafia Clerics who are the embodiment of evil and have no respect for Human Rights in this land which is the birthplace of Darius The Great, Babak, Avicenna (Ibn Sina), Ferdowsi, Khayyam, Hafaz, Saadi and Rumi.
Top Harvard University Scholar Professor Richard Nelson Frye
Lecture at UCLA Royce Hall - March 13, 2005
- Iranian is a culture.
- The second occupation of Iran By Muslims and Arabs happened again with the revolution.
- Iranian poetry is world poetry, no one is better than the Iranian poets.
- Everyone in Iran is a poet.
Listen to an excerpt of the lecture - Real Audio (05:09)
Source URL: http://activistchat.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=28221#28221
Ferdowsi : The following is the highest level of code of ethics for all time defined for humanity from masterpiece of The Epic of Kings by Ferdowsi (935-1020) the World famous Persian (Iranian) poet. This is unmatched by anything that has been written before Ferdowsi :
“Crush not even the tiny ant that beareth a grain of
corn, for she hath life, and sweet life is a boon.”
"Human beings are all members of one body.
They are created from the same essence.
When one member is in pain,
The others cannot rest.
If you do not care about the pain of others,
You do not deserve to be called a human being."
A Quote from Famous Persian Poet Saadi Shirazi
( 13th century Persian poet, from Shiraz the birthplace of Ms. Zahra Kazemi)
ActivistChat Appreciate Ambassador Hashem Hakimi Contributions and Farsi Translation Below
Farsi Translation By Ambassador Hashem Hakimi :
Iranian Student Activist Dies In Prison
July 31, 2006
The Iranian student news agency ISNA reports today that student activist Akbar Mohammadi has died in a Tehran prison. The 36-year-old Mohammadi is believed to have died on July 30. He was on the fifth day of a hunger strike. Coroners are determining the cause of death.
Mohammadi was arrested during a student protest in 1999 and has been in jail since.
FW: The Entire Iran must cry for AKBAR MOHAMMADI
Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2006 18:02:59 +0200
For your information from inside Iran!
Subject: The Entire Iran must cry for AKBAR MOHAMMADI
Dear Mr. Hashem,
Hope you are well. Things are really bad in here. We are telling you as first hand account of being inside and talking to average and ordinary people.
The unemployment is at 40% . This is the official rate of the government. They predict this figure will increase by 13% in the second half of the fiscal year!
They have opened a new Tunnel in Tehran, rastegar Tunnel. Made by Sepah Pasdaran. It was supposed to be finished in 30 months and it has taken 10 years to built. What a marvel of engineering! The 4 lane Highway comes to the Tunnel, the entrance is narrow and changes into two lane traffic!
Again inside the tunnel there is 3 lanes of highway. One part has hit the Metro Tunnel and they have to divert it by again changing into two lanes. In the grand opening there was 157 traffic accidents!
People are hopeless and desperate. They are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel like the tunnel Sepah Pasdaran has built and know there is no light.
We talk to people and some truly are wishing for Us to Bomb Iran! They are fed up with the system. There is no money in the trade and corporate check and private checks bounce in the market like a rubber ball!
The enviroment is ripe for the uprising, where ever we look. All we need is large spark.
We will be trying to exit soon and have some nice pictures for you. We know you will enjoy them.
Please tell all those who were mocking Akbar Mohammadi and his fellow compatriots, shame on you all! Shame on you all to call the Iraniona tribes seperatists and shame on you all who do not wish to see the hard work of these people who have nothing other than their lives that they are giving for our freedom.
Today, we mourn the death of AKBAR MOHAMMADI and will have memorial for him in Iran.
God Bless all the Akbar Mohammadi's in Iran and outside who are fighting the regime with all they have.
Thank you for all your hard works. You are a true Nationalist. God Bless you and your efforts.
The Mullah's end is on hand if we all unite.
Please give the opposition this message.
(_'_) | /¯..|(_'_) | /¯..|(_'_) | /¯..|
Vahede Entesharat Mihan Parastan Iran
زنده باد آزادی
ایرانیان خارج از کشور به خانواده محمدی تسلیت میگویند
انتشار:کمیته دانشجویی گزارشگران حقوق بشر
Student committee of
human right reporters
اکبر را کشتند...
اکبر محمدی دانشجویی زندانی در سال 78 بازداشت گردید و دربازداشتگاه توحید بدترین شکنجه های جسمی و روحی را تحمل کرد و از این رو بود که به اسطوره مقاومت شناخته شد و پس از آن به دلیل همین شکنجه ها از ناحیهی کمر دچار بیماری حاد گردید به طوری که پزشکان در داخل کشور احتمال بهبودی وی را منتفی دانستند.
پس از اینکه با گذراندن چند سال حبس، پزشکی قانونی اعلام کرد که اکبر محمدی توانایی ادامه حبس در زندان را ندارد و میبایست از زندان آزاد شود. اکبر محمدی به مرخصی نامحدود استعلاجی فرستاده شد اما علی رغم آگاهی مسئولین بر وضعیت جسمانی اکبر محمدی که خود عاملین آن بودند، حدود 2 ماه پیش او را در منزلش در آمل بازداشت کردند و در کمال ناباوری به زندان بازگرادند. اکنون باید سران رژیم پاسخ دهند که چه کسی مسئول بازگرداندن وی به زندان است؟
پس از آن اکبر محمدی با نوشتن نامه ای به رئیس زندان خواهان آزادی خود شد و اعلام کرد در صورت عدم توجه به خواسته هایش دست به اعتصاب غذا خواهد زد. اما مسئولین زندان نیز بی توجه به وضعیت او تنها به تهدیش بسنده کردند که اگر اعتصاب کند به سلول انفرادی منتقل خواهد شد. و اکبر محمدی از روز 1 مرداد ناچار دست به اعتصاب غذا زد.
هنگامی که پس از 5 روز دچار تشنج گردید و به بهداری منتقل شد در آنجا نیز به دستور رئیس زندان او را با زنجیر به تخت بستند و در هنگام بازدید نمایندگان حکومت از زندان ، دهان او را نیز چسب زدند تا صدایی از او به گوش کسی نرسد. و در حالی که گفته میشد اکبر، شب گذشته دچار سکته خفیف قلبی شده بود او را به بند 350 بازگردادند، در شرایطی که از ناحیه قلب به شدت احساس ناراحتی میکرد. و بالاخره جسم بیمار او بیش از این تاب نیاورد و شب گذشته در بند 350 زندان اوین، محلی که 7 سال از عمرش را تنها به خاطر آزادیخواهی در آن سپری کرده بود، دچار ایست قلبی شد و درگذشت.
ما زندانیان سیاسی و همبندان وی در نهایت اندوه، این ضایعه را به خانواده اکبر محمدی و به خصوص به همرزممان منوچهر محمدی تسلیت میگوییم و اعلام میکنیم اگر چه اکبر محمدی پس از 7 سال دیشب درگذشت، اما او جاودانه شد و کسانی که عامل بازگشت اکبر محمدی به زندان بودند اکنون باید پاسخگو باشند.
و همچنین تاکید میکنیم ، اکبر وصیت کرده بود در عزای او لباس سیاه نپوشید و عزاداری نکنید، ما نیز توصیه میکنیم در عزای اکبر شمعی روشن کنید.
و خطاب به مجامع حقوق بشر اعلام میکیم که پیش از این با نوشتن نامه ای در مورد وضعیت نابسامان اکبر محمدی هشدار داه بودیم، و گفتیم که اگر به وضعیت او رسیدگی نشود ، زهرا کاظمی دیگری خواهد بود اما دریغ که هیچ ارگان و یا نهادی در این رابطه اقدامی نکرد و فاجعه اتفاق افتاد.
اسامی زندانیان سیاسی:
1. حشمت ا... طبرزدی
2. دکتر ناصر زرافشان
3. بیناداراب زند
4. احمد باطبی
5. بهروز جاوید تهرانی
6. محمدرضا خوانساری
7. مهرداد لهراسبی
8. ارژنگ داوودی
9. خالد هردانی
10. امیر حشمت ساران
11. ولی ا... فیض مهدوی
12. اسد شقاقی
13. خلیل شالچی
14. افشین باایمانی
15. سیامک پورزند
16. هاشم شاهین نیا
17. شاهین آریا نژاد
18. شهرام پور منصوری
19. جعفر اقدامی
20. محمدرضا رجبی
21. حیدرقلی سلطانی
22. محمد نیکبخت
23. ناصر خیراللهی
24. ابراهیم مؤمنی
25. حجت بختیاری
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Mon Jul 31, 2006 2:50 pm Post subject: Iranian dissident dies after hunger strike
|Iranian dissident dies after hunger strike
By NASSER KARIMI, Associated Press Writer
Mon Jul 31, 10:57 AM ET
TEHRAN, Iran - A jailed former student leader died in prison after a nine-day hunger strike, a human rights activist said Monday. Akbar Mohammadi, who died late Sunday, was arrested after taking part in anti-government protests at Tehran University in July 1999 — the country's biggest domestic crisis since the 1979 Islamic revolution.
He was sentenced to death but the sentence was later reduced to 15 years in prison.
He was released on medical leave last year to seek treatment for a spinal-cord injury suffered after his arrest, said Kohyar Goodarzi, a member of the Student Committee of Human Rights Reporters of Iran.
Two months ago, toward the end of the yearlong leave, Mohammadi "was arrested without any explanation," Goodarzi said, and placed in Tehran's notorious Evin prison.
Mohammadi went on a hunger strike to protest a lack of proper medical care, Goodarzi said.
"He suffered a heart attack as a result of his strike," Goodarzi said.
Senior prison official Sohrab Soleimani said Mohammadi had been receiving appropriate medical care.
"He was drinking water and tea and was under doctors' supervision," the semiofficial Islamic Students News Agency quoted Soleimani as saying.
Some 25 Iranian political activists and prisoners issued a statement criticizing the government for its treatment of Mohammadi.
"Those who returned him to the prison should now be held responsible," for the consequences of his rearrest, it said.
Last edited by cyrus on Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Mon Jul 31, 2006 2:56 pm Post subject: Iran: Student Activist's Death In Prison Remains Mystery
Iran: Student Activist's Death In Prison Remains Mystery
A former Iranian student-protest leader has died in Evin prison, which houses many of the country's jailed dissidents. Reports from Tehran say 36-year-old Akbar Mohammadi died on July 30, several days after authorities say he launched a hunger strike in a bid to win his release. The cause of death remains unclear, but at least one source suggests that Mohammadi began his hunger strike some two months ago.
PRAGUE, July 31, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The Student Committee of Human Rights Reporters of Iran reported Mohammadi's death in a statement released today.
The news was soon confirmed by Sohrad Soleimani, the head of Tehran Province's prison authority.
Soleimani told Iran's ISNA student news agency that Mohammadi fell ill while showering with other inmates, then died during his transfer to the prison infirmary.
Soleimani did not elaborate on the cause of death, saying coroners have not yet reached a conclusion.
Resolute In Seeking Release
Reports suggest Mohammadi had been on hunger strike since July 23. But a fellow inmate -- another former dissident student -- told Reuters today that Mohammadi launched his protest in May in a bid to secure his release.
Mohammadi's lawyer, Nemat Ahmadi, told Radio Farda today that his client sounded resolute about not letting his determination falter:
"A few days prior to going on hunger strike, [Mohammadi] called me and told me he would stop taking food, and stand [firm] until the end," Ahmadi said.
Reuters today quoted Iranian Justice Minister Jamal Karimirad as saying that Mohammadi was under close medical supervision and that his health deteriorated on July 30.
A friend of Mohammadi's, who identified himself as Morad Moallem, told Radio Farda that prison authorities tried forcibly to feed Mohammadi -- but to no avail.
"After five days of hunger strike, they took him to the [prison] infirmary in a possible bid to make him a serum injection, but he resisted and did not let them [inject the serum]," the acquaintance said. "He subsequently understood that the reason for [the injections] was that some parliamentarians were going to visit the prison. They had taken him to the infirmary so that [the parliamentarians] would not see him. They put tape on his mouth so that those parliamentarians could not even hear him, and they bound his hands and feed to his bed."
1999 Protest Leader
A student in social sciences, Mohammadi was arrested during the peaceful protests of 1999 that are considered to have fueled one of Iran's biggest domestic crises since the Islamic revolution two decades earlier.
The student protests were primarily aimed at restrictions on freedom of the press.
Clashes between protesters and members of the Iranian security forces -- reinforced by the pro-government vigilante student group Ansar-e Hezbollah -- claimed at least one life. Hundreds of protesters were arrested, and many received court sentences.
In September 1999, Tehran's Revolutionary Court sentenced Mohammadi to death after a trial that rights group say was unfair. Although Iran's Supreme Court upheld the sentence in 2000, it was eventually commuted to 15 years in jail -- reportedly following the intervention of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Two other leaders of the 1999 student protests, Ahmad Batebi and Ali Shafei, were sentenced to death along with Mohammadi. Their sentences were commuted to 10 years and 2 1/2 years in jail, respectively.
Accusations Of Abuse
Rights group say Mohammadi was tortured during his detention, and that it seriously damaged his health. He was reportedly suffering from kidney ailments and hearing problems.
Another of Mohammadi's lawyers, Khalil Bahramian, complained that prison authorities had not allowed him to visit his client once he launched his hunger strike. The lawyer called it another violation of national and international law.
On July 25, Bahramian told Iran's ILNA news agency that Mohammadi's brother, Manuchehr, was also in poor health.
Manuchehr Mohammadi is serving a 15-year prison sentence in another Tehran prison. He, too, was arrested in the wake of the 1999 student protests.
(Radio Farda correspondent Niusha Boghrati contributed to this report.)
Last edited by cyrus on Mon Jul 31, 2006 5:33 pm; edited 5 times in total
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:02 pm Post subject: Our Today Hero Student Activist Leader Akbar Mohammadi
و خون هرگز نمی خسبد...
"بابی ساندز" را فراموش کنيد
امروز " اکبر محمدی " قهرمان ماست
خون شهدای راه مبارزاتی ملت ايران خواهد جوشيد و قطعا بنيان کاخ استبداد را ويران خواهد کرد.
ملت مظلوم و ستمديده ايران با دلی آکنده از اندوه و دردی جانکاه شهادت مبارز دلاور اکبر محمدی که پس از سال ها تحمل رنج گرانبار زندان در سلول های انفرادی حاکميت جبار و ستمگر و تحمل انواع شکنجه های غير انسانی در راه مبارزه با قانون شکنی های عوامل مسئولیت ناشناس به دنبال ۱۰ روز اعتصاب غذا برای اثبات مظلوميت شربت شهادت را به سر کشيد به آگاهی شما ملت مبارز ايران و همه آزادگان و مبارزان جهان بشری می رسانيم.
به راستی که اکبر محمدی به عنوان مبارزی صادق و راستين در اين دوره از تاريخ مبارزات ملت ايران چونان آيتی روشن از جانبازی های بی شائبه فرزندان برومند ميهن جلوه و درخششی تام و تمام خواهد داشت و مسلما خون او به سان همه شهدای اين سرزمین اهورايی دامان همه ستمکاران زمان را خواهد گرفت و بنيان استبداد را ويران خواهد کرد.
حماسه مقاومتی که اکبر محمدی برای دفاع از آزادگی و استقرار حاکمیت ملی خلق نمود برگ زرين تازه ای است بر حديث دراز ايثار و فداکاری های يک ملت بزرگ که شهيد ديگری به تبار خونين عاشقان ايران و آزادی تقديم نموده است. اما حماسه اکبر محمدی سخت تلخ ولی افتخارآميز است چرا که در اوج مظلوميت و به دور از غوغا سالاری مدعيان حقوق بشر و فقط به اتکاء پاکی طينت و عشق به آزادی و وطن مقاومت دليرانه نمود و هرگز در مسير مبارزه به بيگانگان و حمايت های خاص آن ها نظر نداشت و اميد نبست.
ما اين شهادت قهرمانانه را به بازماندگان دلاورش به ويژه پدر و مادر مبارز و بزرگوارش و کوشنده همراه و همرزم و چون او اسيرش آقای منوچهر محمدی و همه مبارزان راه ميهن و ملت بزرگوار ايران تسليت عرض نموده و به نام و راه قهرمانانه اکبر محمدی درود می فرستيم و حاکميت فرقه ای را مسئول اين خون به ناحق ريخته می دانيم.
حزب پان ايرانيست
سحرگاه نهم امرداد ماه ۱۳۸۵
Joined: 24 Jun 2003
|Posted: Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:38 pm Post subject: Five Years of injustice and ill treatment:
Five Years of injustice and ill treatment:
Akbar Mohammadi - case sheet
This document is an external campaign document focusing primarily on the case of Akbar Mohammadi, a possible prisoner of conscience.. However, the document also highlights Amnesty International's (AI) concerns in relation to torture, ill treatment of political prisoners, the administration of justice, and freedom of expression in Iran. This case sheet provides AI members with the opportunity to take sustained, long term action, locally, nationally and internationally on AI concerns in Iran
Full Name: Akbar Mohammadi Nationality: Iranian
Current Status: Akbar Mohammadi is in Evin prison serving a fifteen year prison sentence. He is reported to be suffering from serious health problems without prompt and adequate access to medical treatment.Related information: Urgent Actions: AI Index numbers: MDE 13/004/2000, MDE 13/015/2000, MDE 13/021/2003, MDE 13/020/2004
Medical letter writing action: AI Index numbers: MDE 13/05/00, MDE 13/10/00
Amnesty International Annual Reports: 2000, 2001, 2003
Amnesty International's concerns: Torture/ ill treatment, unfair trial, delay and denial of medical treatment, possible prisoner of conscience.
In early July 1999, students gathered in a peaceful demonstration outside university dormitories in Tehran to protest against the forced closure of the daily newspaper (see details below). As their numbers grew, and the days passed, there were increasingly angry exchanges and eventually clashes between the security forces and demonstrators. Akbar Mohammadi was one of the hundreds of students arrested during the demonstrations. Like many other students, he was initially held in incommunicado detention in the Towhid detention centre under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Intelligence before being transferred to Tehran's Evin prison in March 2000.
Akbar Mohammadi was reportedly sentenced to death in September 1999 after a secret trial by a Revolutionary Court in Tehran whose procedures did not conform to international standards of fair trial. His sentence was reportedly upheld by the Supreme Court, but was subsequently commuted to 15 years' imprisonment by Bench 21 of the Tehran Appeal Court in November 1999.
During his first year of imprisonment Akbar Mohammadi was reportedly subjected to 'mock executions'. He was repeatedly taken from his cell in solitary confinement to places where he was told he would be killed. Officials would go through the motions of preparing to execute him, including reading the Koran to him on one or more occasions, and then would 'change' their minds and return him to his cell. In the subsequent years, Akbar and Manuchehr Mohammadi have been permitted a small number of temporary leaves, or, releases from prison, the recent of which was for 12 days in May 2004.
Akbar Mohammadi is also alleged to have been subjected to other forms of ill treatment. In March 2000, Akbar Mohammadi wrote a letter to the head of the judiciary, Ayatollah Shahroudi, which was widely published in a number of Iranian newspapers, stating that while in detention he had been "violently beaten". He was allegedly handcuffed, suspended by his arms, and whipped on the soles of his feet with electric cables. Prison guards reportedly beat him until he was on the point of losing consciousness, saying that all he had to do was blink to accept the charges against him. His beatings allegedly resulted in the loss of 40% of his hearing in his left ear.
Medical concerns: delay and denial of medical care
In the first year of his imprisonment, Akbar Mohammadi was also reportedly kicked down a flight of stairs, which broke his pelvis. He was said to have been denied medical treatment and has allegedly been unable to walk comfortably since.
At the end of November 2003, Akbar Mohammadi was hospitalised due to stomach and kidney problems, including internal bleeding, and possibly a lung infection. He was operated on at the Taleghani Hospital. During his six day stay in hospital, he was kept under 24 hour surveillance by guards and was not allowed visitors. According to information from his family, a hospital doctor recommended a hospital stay of one month, but he was transferred back to Evin prison after six days. His health is said to have deteriorated since then, as the operation was reportedly unsuccessful.
The Mohammadi family's repeated requests for Akbar to be granted temporary leave in order to go to hospital for medical treatment were reportedly denied until March 2004, when they were told that he could be released on bail equalling - at official rates -US$42,500; an amount which the family said it cannot afford. Yet, a medical report reportedly prepared by medical officials in Evin prison allegedly states that Akbar requires further medical intervention outside the confines of the hospital and a period of rehabilitation in a suitable environment. According to unconfirmed information received in June 2004, doctors may have told Akbar Mohammadi that even if he was operated on, he may be left disabled in some way. Amnesty International fears that Akbar Mohammadi has not been given prompt access to adequate medical attention.
Akbar Mohammadi may be a prisoner of conscience. Please join Amnesty International and its worldwide members in calling for a judicial review into his case (see details at the end of this document), with a view to his release, if he is imprisoned solely for his conscientiously held beliefs. Join Amnesty International in calling for an investigation into the allegations of torture and for anyone found responsible for having carried out torture to be brought to justice; and for calling for Akbar Mohammadi to be given adequate medical attention.
Harassment and arrest of members of the Mohammadi family
Akbar Mohammadi may be have been targeted for arrest in part on account of the activities of his brother, Manuchehr Mohammadi, a member of the Anjoman-e Daneshjuyan va Daneshamuktegan-e Melli (National Association of Students and Graduates). Manuchehr Mohammadi, detained around the same time as Akbar, was accused of having a leading role in the unrest, demonstrations on 19 and 26 July 1999. He was shown on television giving televised 'confessions' relating to his involvement with "counter-revolutionary agents". He was charged with offences reportedly relating to national security and tried in secret..
On or around 20 November 2000, an appeals court upheld a sentence of seven years' imprisonment against him. While imprisoned, this sentence was extended by two years at the end of November 2003: one year for having had interviews with foreign media while on leave from prison and another for issuing 'political statements' while in prison. While on leave between 11 and 17 June 2003, he had given telephone interviews to a radio station and a television station run by Iranians based in the United States, who are opposed to the Iranian government. On his return to Evin prison he was reportedly kept in solitary confinement for 37 days, and reportedly ill treated: he was chained in a crouching position with his mouth gagged, in a vermin-infested cell, and was frequently beaten. At a family visit on 5 September 2003, shortly after he was returned to Evin prison, his mother reportedly fainted when she saw him. He apparently had a badly bruised face, could barely walk, and said only one sentence: that he had been tortured. At the end of October 2003 he was reportedly lashed 30 times.
According to reports received by Amnesty International on 28 June 2004, Manuchehr Mohammadi also suffers from gingivitis and chronic, severe bleeding from the gums - which is said to cause him pain when he speaks or eats. Doctors in Evin prison are said to have recommended that he be treated outside the prison. A senior judicial official reportedly accepted a request for him to receive medical attention outside the prison but this has not been carried out by the prison authorities. Meanwhile, the condition of his gums and teeth are said to continue to deteriorate.
The plight of Akbar and his brother Manuchehr, has taken a heavy toll on their parents, who live in the small town of Amol, in northern Iran, and on other members of their family. Following their arrest in July 1999, their whereabouts remained unknown to their family for a considerably lengthy period. When the family learned of their detention they travelled from northern Iran to see their sons in prison and were said to have been distressed by their poor conditions.
The two brothers' father, Muhammad Muhammadi, is said to have written repeatedly to the authorities, including to the judiciary, regarding the plight of his sons but has not received adequate explanation.
On 8 July 2003, he and his daughter Simin, were arrested and taken to Evin prison for their persistent search for justice for the two prisoners. According to information received by Amnesty International, Simin was beaten in front of her father and dragged away. When the father demanded to know where they were taking Simin, he apparently was told that he and Simin would be severely beaten if he asked any more questions. The father is said to have suffered a heart attack while detained in solitary confinement. He was bailed and transferred to a cardiac care unit of a hospital but left around four or five days later.
Simin was held in solitary confinement for 14 days- four or five of which she spent in a prison hospital due to breathing problems. Prison guards would not tell her what had happened to her father. She was reportedly interrogated for several hours every night and repeatedly asked about the activities of her sister Nasrin (see below), who lives in Europe and brother Manuchehr. She was threatened with beatings and told that they could do to her what had happened to Zahra Kazemi, a Canadian-Iranian national who was killed while under official supervision in June 2003. Amnesty International does not know whether she faced charges as a result of this incident, although she was released on bail on 22 July 2003.
Nasrin Mohammadi, 30, fled Iran in September 2001 and gained refugee status in Europe. It has been said that her brothers told her repeatedly to leave the country. She has sought to keep her brothers' fate in the spotlight by continual, tirelessly campaigning on their behalves. Amnesty International fears, however, that harassment of the Mohammadi family may be used in an attempt to stop the brothers and Nasrin Mohammadi from making public appeals or comments on their cases.
According to information received on 28 June 2004, members of the family have - once again - been threatened with unspecified reprisals if they publicly discuss the plight of the two brothers and it is reported that all members of the family are again under considerable pressures.
The 18 Tir (8 July)student-led demonstrations and the fate of other students
In early July 1999 small number of students gathered in a peaceful demonstration outside university dormitories in the Amir Abad district of Tehran to protest against the forced closure of the daily newspaper Salam (Hello). As the days passed, their numbers swelled into the hundreds and there were increasingly angry exchanges and eventually clashes with the security forces. In the course of the demonstrations, at which hundreds of students were arrested, demonstrators were attacked by members of the Ansar-e Hezbollah, a semi-official organization which opposes political dissent against the State. Security forces at the scene reportedly failed to intervene to protect the students.
In the following days the size and nature of the demonstrations changed dramatically, leading to an escalation in violence. Despite calls for calm from some student leaders, and an official ban on demonstrations in Tehran, demonstrations continued and spread to other towns and cities. Hundreds of people were arrested throughout the country, most of whom were held without charge or trial. Dozens faced torture and ill treatment in incommunicado detention, followed by manifestly unfair trials and imprisonment.
The unrest, which has become known as the events of 18 Tir (the date in the Iranian calendar during which the events took place), was also marked by a raid carried out by members of the Ansar-e Hezbollah and members of the security forces into the student dormitories. This resulted in the killing of at least one person. The attack was strongly condemned by both President Khatami and the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and two senior police officers were later arrested and removed from their positions as a result of the official investigations.
In the years following the 18 Tir demonstrations there has been a pattern of human rights violations targeting student protests and demonstrations. On June 11 2003 nearly 80 students living in student dormitories in the same Amir Abad area of Tehran demonstrated against draft proposals to privatize universities. They were joined by local residents and the demonstrations reportedly escalated and became widely politicized. Organized groups of non-uniformed, plain- clothed individuals began to attack the demonstrators and police intervened to end the clashes. As the demonstrations grew over the following nights, units of the Special Forces (Nirou-ye Vijeh) were deployed to disperse demonstrators. There were reports however that the Special Forces permitted plain-clothed members of the Ansar-e Hezbollah to attack peaceful demonstrators and that in certain instances excessive force may have been used to break up the demonstrations. Thousands of students and other demonstrators were arrested: in August 2003, Amnesty International wrote to the authorities, seeking information about the status of 132 individuals who had reportedly been detained, but to date, the organization has not received a response. By the end of 2003, at least 65 individuals had reportedly been charged.
Amnesty International remains concerned about the status of a variety of students or graduates. Heshmatollah Tabarzadi, detained following the demonstrations in 1999, was reportedly beaten and flogged with metal cables on the soles of his feet. He was later released without charge or trial. Amnesty International also received reports that another student, Mohammad Reza Kasrani, endured "blows to his feet until blood poured out". Amnesty International remains concerned regarding the reported continued detention or harassment of other students.
Iran's obligations to investigate allegations of torture
To Amnesty International's knowledge, no investigation has ever been conducted into the allegations of ill treatment and torture made by Akbar or Manuchehr Mohammadi or any of the students held for prolonged periods following their arrest in July 1999. Meanwhile, in 2000 and 2001 former students who arrived in European countries seeking asylum were able seek treatment for incidences of torture - including instrumental rape carried out on men - that were allegedly carried out by officials during and after the July 1999 events of 18 Tir.
Article 38 of the Iranian constitution (Qanun-e Esasi) states that "all forms of torture for the purpose of extracting confession or acquiring information are forbidden". Moreover, human rights violations carried out by state officials are punishable under Article 578 of Iran's Penal Code, yet these provisions appear to have been ignored by judicial officials.
Iran is also a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Article 7 of which states that: "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment."
Amnesty International calls on its members and supporters to urge the Iranian authorities to help right the wrongs committed five years ago, during the events of 18 Tir, or 8 July 1999, by using the recommendations below in appeals to the authorities. Please see the addresses given at the end of this document.
Amnesty International urges the Iranian authorities to ensure that:
· An open and independent enquiry into allegations of torture carried out on Akbar Mohammadi and other students during the events of 18 Tir is convened as soon as possible, anyone found responsible be brought to justice;
· Domestic and international commitments regarding the prohibition of torture are upheld;
· Law enforcement officials throughout Iran to be made aware of, and conform to, international standards regarding the use of force and the absolute prohibition of torture in all circumstances;
· Detainees be given access to adequate medical care without delay as provided for by international human rights standards;
· A judicial review into the case against Akbar Mohammadi be convened, with a view to determining whether he was imprisoned for the expression of his conscientiously held beliefs;
· Akbar Mohammadi be released immediately and without condition, if he is found to have been imprisoned solely for the expression of his conscientiously held beliefs
· Review cases of all prisoners held in connection with the demonstrations with a view to releasing them if they are detained solely for the peaceful expression of their conscientiously held beliefs
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