Massacre of prisoners in Iran - "Do you think we should have given them sweets?" - Iran Tribunal.
A post on The Justice [ ] Gap blog preceded an independent tribunal
hearing in The Hague (held 25th - 27th October) which examined the
massacre by the Ayatollah Khomeini’s
regime of some 20 to 30,000 political prisoners, men and women, in Iran
in the 1980s. About 4,500 people, many of them teenagers and from
leftwing groups, died in the summer of 1988 alone, according to Amnesty International.
The killings have been largely ignored by the west, unlike the mass
killings perpetrated in places like Srebrenica, Rwanda, or the Chile of
Pinochet. The Islamic Republic of Iran was invited to participate in
the hearing but has to date refused to engage with the Tribunal process.
See the Tribunal's Press Release of 15th October.
The Tribunal follows on from a Truth Commission process which issued a report in September 2012. The report is 357 pages and is exceptionally harrowing. The report provides in detail the manner of arrest, the brutal tortures
that were carried out by the regime in the Iranian prisons and mass
executions between 1981 and 1988. The report further investigates the
disastrous impact of these brutalities on the families of the victims
and the survivors of the torture and imprisonment.
The Tribunal is to hand down a verdict in November - see Payvand Iran News 27th October 2012 - Iran Tribunal Closing Statement at The Hague
30 October, 2012
19 October, 2012
The United Kingdom is a signatory to the United Nations Convention against Torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (the "torture convention"). The terms of the Convention are clear enough:
- Each State Party shall take effective legislative, administrative, judicial or other measures to prevent acts of torture in any territory under its jurisdiction.
- No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.
- An order from a superior officer or a public authority may not be invoked as a justification of torture.