Thursday, July 23, 2009

Arrests and Deaths Continue in Iran

From Amnesty International. 
One note though: the list of those killed runs waaaaay longer than suggested. There have been at least 65 identified deaths so far. For a more complete list, please see here.

22 July 2009

Reports from Tehran on Tuesday, said that security forces deployed excessive use of force to counter peaceful demonstrations in Haft Tir Square, where more arrests were said to have been made. This news is, according to Amnesty International, a jarring reminder to the international community that the waves of arrests and killings continue unabated in Iran, as the authorities tighten their grip.

Thirty-six Iranian army officers are among people reported to have been arrested recently in connection with the disputed presidential election in Iran. Amnesty International has received the names of 24 of them.

Others reported to have been arrested in recent days include political activists, journalists, academics and lawyers. Amnesty International said it fears for their safety in detention, as torture or other ill-treatment of detainees is common in Iran.

According to media reports, the military officers planned to attend the Friday prayer sermon in Tenrah on 17 July, led by former president Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. They planned to do so while wearing their military uniforms as an act of political defiance.

The gesture was said to be intended to express solidarity with the demonstrators protesting against the official but widely disputed presidential election result.

Ayatollah Rafsanjani, who supported the campaign of presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, expressed concern in his sermon at the handling of complaints regarding the election by the Guardian Council, and called for the release of all those detained following the protests and an end to media restrictions.

Hundreds - possibly thousands - of people have been detained for protesting against the official election result. Many are held in undisclosed locations across Iran.

Mostafa Tajzadeh, arrested on 16 June, unlike some other detainees, has not yet been allowed to call his family, nor have they been able to obtain any information concerning his whereabouts from the Iranian authorities.

Bijan Khajehpour Khoei, a business and economic consultant, was arrested on 27 June at Tehran airport when he arrived back from a trip to Vienna and London. During his brief trip abroad, he spoke to trade officials in Vienna and met the Iran British Business Chamber in London, as part of his work to support Iranian business and encourage foreign investment in Iran. His whereabouts are also unknown and his family fear for his health as he is diabetic.

Possibly as many as 197 protestors were arrested on 9 July at a demonstration marking the tenth anniversary of 18 Tir, the suppression of student-led protests in 1999, in which at least one student was killed and many others were tortured or otherwise ill-treated. The police say that about 40 demonstrators were arrested at the 9 July protest.

Dr Sheikh Hassan Aghaei, a journalist from Iran's Kurdish minority and a political cartoonist, was detained in Mahabad, northwest Iran at 11am on 18 July by plain-clothes security officials who may be affiliated to the Revolutionary Guards, and transferred to an unknown location. No reason has been given for his arrest but he had been involved in campaign activities for Mir Hossein Mousavi.

Lawyer and human rights activist, Shadi Sadr, was violently arrested in Tehran on the morning of 17 July on her way to prayers.

Read the complete report here ...


Erwin said...

For the People of Iran
For Iran 2009
Land of a thousand whisper
Caressed by the kisses of the sun
Made beautiful by the songs of the past
A glorious past
Now sullied by the shackles of bigotry and fear

How it shatters my soul to hear
The silent voices screaming for freedom
How it strangles my breathing agony into
Pain undefined
To see young womens’ lives stamped out
To listen to the silent wails from forbidding walls

Listen o you who drink at the fountain of freedom
Listen o you who wake up to sweet security
The silent screams of stifled voices
Listen to the voices of mothers
Weeping for dead sons stolen in the night
Lost to the dark embrace of closed minded men.

And the voices calling to us
Echo across the web
The news relays the call
Hear these voices
People across the world
Reach across the void

And lend your voice to the silent screams
To the silent dead, to mothers and fathers
Who call for their child, curse not death
But life itself.
And shout for the cause of the orphaned.
Those who call freedom, father and mother.

Listen and hear
Listen and mourn
The morning is dark and filled with
The thousands of voices
Calling, forever calling
In our sleep and in the hours of waking.

“The Martyr’s Song”
(To those who have died for freedom in Iran)

I was born screaming into this world
Wrenched from my mother’s womb.
That pain is now forgotten
But I shall die with dignity
Because it is your hand, Oppressor
Which annihilates me out of this world.

You who have made the law
Who stand above the law
We who are oppressed by it
Have no appeal except to expect
Death by your hands
Not of choice but by brute force.

How will you answer for the red rivers of blood,
Soiling the fair skin of mother Iran?
How will you look into your daughter’s eyes
When ours have been torn apart by rape and murder?
How will you teach conscience to your sons
When your hands are soiled with innocent blood.

I have no revenge, only the will to be remembered
I have no jihad but only prayers for my children
That they may be spared this war of conscience
And your ever present vengeance
That my widowed wife find solace that today
I will be in paradise

But I leave you with one thought,
That the vengeance of mother Iran
For the blood soaking her garments
Will come fast and furious
Unknown on a dark night
Then you will remember each of our names

The names of Sohrab, Neda,Taraneh and countless others
Then you will feel each blow
Each wound, each cut, each curse
For we shall return to see you cringe
To see your eyes widen with fear,
To hear your demented screams
And at that time you will know terror,a greater terror than mine
Then you will remember the dead children
The raped women, the orphans and widows
That is why I go contentedly to my death
Knowing my sacrifice will be remembered,
Knowing Iran’s freedom will come.

@Erwin K. Syiem Sutnga

RF said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RF said...

Many thanks!