Iran Interlink, September 27 2020:… In this case, a report about the massacre containing flawed information, created by AI’s Iran Department has been repeatedly published over many years without correction. This report was recently amplified by Radio Farda in English, but the bigger problem lies in the Farsi sphere. On several occasions this report has been used as the basis to attack Mir Hossein Mousavi who was Prime Minister at the time. Mousavi denied knowing about the massacres at their start and asserts that he opposed them once he became aware of these events. Amnesty International reporting consistently ignores this. MEK Manipulated Amnesty International
MEK Manipulated Amnesty International – Iran Interlink, Weekly Digest – Sep 25, 2020
MEK Manipulated AI to Demonise Mousavi
++ As public trust in a wide range of institutions worldwide is being eroded by reckless, mendacious, populist and incompetent political leadership, it’s worth remembering that trust in organisations which claim to be impartial, independent advocates for victims of human rights abuses are not exempt from this erosion of trust. Some are even demonstrably corrupt in their own right.
Take Amnesty International for example, which apparently cannot recognise when it has been infiltrated and manipulated for political messaging, even when it has been informed by concerned parties. Even when the trail of evidence is pretty clear for all to see.
Recently the issue of the 1988 massacre of political prisoners in Iran was given another airing as the anniversary came and went without the perpetrators being brought to justice. While it is incumbent on a human rights organisation like Amnesty to investigate and report on such events, it is also incumbent to check and check again for errors.
In this case, a report about the massacre containing flawed information, created by AI’s Iran Department has been repeatedly published over many years without correction. This report was recently amplified by Radio Farda in English, but the bigger problem lies in the Farsi sphere. On several occasions this report has been used as the basis to attack Mir Hossein Mousavi who was Prime Minister at the time. Mousavi denied knowing about the massacres at their start and asserts that he opposed them once he became aware of these events. Amnesty International reporting consistently ignores this.
Behind this targeted attack is a malicious and politicised campaign orchestrated by the Mojahedin-e Khalq cult (MEK) in Albania. This has been exposed though a letter with 60 signatories, detailing the flaws in AI’s report. (See below.) Following this, Professor Muhammad Sahimi analysed the messaging and the messengers in a Facebook post which identifies the links between MEK, and three women who have been involved in demonising Mousavi. (See below.)
MEK’s response was to issue its usual rant, in short: ‘Anyone attacking Amnesty International is an agent of the Iranian regime’.
What is clear is from this is that MEK are in a panic over the imminent release of Mousavi from his house arrest since 2008. Mousavi represents an internal, indigenous, non-violent opposition which rallies support for change not overthrow. Neither MEK, nor the US nor other of Iran’s enemies want this. They want the only option for the Iranian people to be external oppositionists who will enable foreign governments (US, UK, Israel, KSA) to put in place a puppet regime. As such, the US only has MEK and Pahlavi as alternative rulers for Iran. But, apparently, even these losers are better than a popular indigenous opposition movement which might just give the Iranian people control over their own destiny.
++ On the 40th anniversary of the beginning of the Iran Iraq war, BBC Farsi interviewed some of the ex-POWs who had been handed over to the MEK, but who have now left the group and are living in Europe. MEK have been swearing at the BBC ever since – which is ironic because all the BBC did was report what these individuals experienced. MEK issued a statement apparently signed by some ex-POWs in the camp in Albania but without names. MEK claim that there are 123 of these ex-POWs demanding that human rights organisations deal with the BBC about this. The MEK’s gaffe is that in 1989 when these people were handed to MEK the number was around 2,000. The lowest estimate, including by MEK itself, was 1,700. The ICRC were involved. Farsi commentators ask ‘what happened to the others?’ They also point out that if MEK would give the names of these 123 individuals, the families would know whether or not to search for their lost loved ones in the camp. Others say that ‘if these 123 are asking for something to be done about the BBC, why don’t they go directly to the UNHCR themselves, even to make a phone call? Something has gone badly wrong that 2000 became 123, and what if, tomorrow, you come and say there are none!’
++ News that at least three MEK members in Albania had apparently died of COVID-19 prompted anger and dismay. Nejat Society reported that ‘MEK Members Families Plead With Albanian Government for Help’. Albanian historian and media personality Olsi Jazexhi also interviewed a family member of Mohammad Ali Maleki – a former POW about efforts to make contact with him. Anne Khodabandeh wrote about Maryam Rajavi’s response to the deaths. She claimed them as martyrs but didn’t say what they died from. In doing so, she re-defined what it means to gain martyrdom in the MEK. All that is required now is just to die without leaving the cult and she will praise you for it.
++ Mazda Parsi in Nejat Society writes about the discovery by American journalists of another fake journalist linked to the MEK – which prompted MEK to accuse The American Conservative of being a “mouthpiece for the mullahs”. Parsi writes, “Paul Brian and Arthur Bloom of the American Conservative describe the MEK-run troll farm in twitter against the Iranian government as ‘a hall of mirrors amplifying the case for war with Iran’. They consider the MEK’s large amounts of money going to the pockets of twitter as a good reason to use the platform of this social network for warmongering propaganda and aggressive content. ‘The ad money from NCRI and pro-MEK accounts seems to have dampened Twitter’s desire to crack down’, they state. ‘A request for comment from Twitter was not returned as of press time.’”
++ Reza Moshfegh interviewed Albanian journalist Gjergji Thanasi for the Tehran Times. Thanasi says MEK treat the members as serfs, adding that no other country was willing to take them. He also revealed that neither the Albanian government nor the UN have any involvement in or knowledge of what happens inside the MEK. Even during the pandemic, local health teams have been denied permission to enter the camp to help disinfect there. He referred to his ongoing libel claim against Behzad Safari, a leading MEK member: “In one year, the first judge of my case resigned not only of my case but also from the justice system to pursue a private-sector career. The judge replacing the former one was arrested some four days ago on corruption charges. The hearing of my case was postponed five times on different grounds. There were seven hearing sessions, yet there is no progress beyond the introduction and identification by the judge of the parties and their lawyers taking part in this legal case! I invite the readers to try to imagine what is that mysterious and powerful entity that pushes Albanian judges to string puppets or ruin their career and sometimes even their personal liberty.”
++ Habilian Association – representing victims of MEK terrorism in Iran – published an analytical piece examining MEK’s association with the Liberation Movement active in Iran in the 1960s. The article concludes: “Overall, a review of the relationship between the MKO and the Liberation Movement indicates that although Mojahedin had intellectual roots in the Liberation Movement, their affiliation with them gradually diminished as the secular aspects of the organization gained prominence. They became a closed independent Stalinist organization and started criticizing leaders of the Liberation Movement leaders which eventually led to removing from their educational sources all the doctrines of the Liberation Movement.”
1- The Mojahedin cult again gets behind Amnesty International to attack Mir Hossein Mousavi and falsify history
Muhammad Sahimi , Facebook Page, Translated by Iran Interlink
Link to the source (Persian)
وقتی فرقه مجاهدین از عفو بین المللی برای حمله به میرحسین موسوی و جعل تاریخ حمایت میکنددوستان سلام: به تدریج روشن…
Hello friends: It is gradually becoming clear who is organizing and supporting the recent widespread organized attacks against Mir Hossein Mousavi behind the scenes. After many protests against Amnesty International for falsifying the history of the cowardly killing of political prisoners in 1988, on September 11, nearly two weeks ago, Maryam Rajavi’s so-called “National Council of Resistance” suddenly harshly attacked these critics and, as usual, labelled them “agents of the regime.”
“In the midst of the campaign, any attack on Amnesty International for exposing the facts is advancing the line and carrying out a mission for the Ministry of Intelligence of the mullahs and the perpetrators of the massacre”, the cult said in a statement.
In its statement, the Mojahedin cult pretends that critics of Amnesty International do not want the real perpetrators of that inhuman massacre to be discovered. Not only is that wrong, but in fact the perpetrators are known and we all know who they are, from Mr Khomeini himself who issued the order, to his son Ahmad Khomeini who played a key role, to the death squads that decided who should be executed, and those who supported it and try to justify it to others. Most of them are alive, and some even in power.
My own family suffered greatly from the executions and imprisonments of the 1981s. Among the victims of the 1988 massacre are the late Taghieh Khan, a very close friend of my high school years, Engineer Hassan Dasht-Ara, held in loving memory, a classmate and very good friend of mine, and a really lovable human being, two brothers, two of my closest friends in college, And there are several other peers of mine. How is it possible, for example, that I do not want the perpetrators of these crimes to be punished? But the recent efforts, initiated by Amnesty International, do not seem to seek to uncover the truth, but rather to orchestrate a well-organized plan against Mir Hossein.
Although the perspectives, motives, and perpetrators of those crimes are quite clear, Amnesty International and its so-called “researcher” Raha Bahreini have clung to Mir Hossein. The hashtag for the 1988 event is # Mir Hossein Mousavi. Bahreini herself constantly writes about Mir Hossein on social media, and when she is challenged, claims to be publishing her personal views. There are all sorts of human rights issues in Iran at the moment, and the perpetrators of the 1988 massacre are all still alive and well, but Amnesty International is looking for someone who had no role in the massacre.
At the same time, Ms Shadi Sadr, who has also taken a stand against Mir Hossein, visited the MEK cult camp in Albania. Two credible sources have told me that Bahreini has also visited Albania. Ms Shadi Amin’s position is exactly the same as that of Sadr and Bahreini, and she repeats their falsification of history. All of these facts show who the real planners of this process are.
The fact is that the Iranian government recently released Mr Mehdi Karroubi from house arrest. Those who fear the purity, honesty, faith, patriotism, and popularity of Mir Hossein among the Iranian people are increasingly terrified that this national figure, who has been under house arrest for nearly ten years for his faithfulness to his promises, will finally be released from the repression of imprisonment. In that case, the Mojahedin and the monarchists, who are completely disgraced in Iran and do not have the slightest significant social base, will become more and more isolated from the Iranian people. That is why they started their organized attacks. The cooperation and coordination of Amnesty International and people like Shadi Sadr and Shadi Amin with this plan is also against the Iranian people.
We must be vigilant and not be fooled by the deceptive cloak of “human rights”. The real defenders of the people and of civil and human rights are, of course, well acquainted with the nature of the Mojahedin and the monarchists.
2- Collective statement: Amnesty International must amend its report
Signatories, Iran Emrooz, Translated by Iran Interlink
Link to the source (Persian)
In a collective statement with 60 signatories, the majority of whom are reformists within the Iranian government and their supporters, Amnesty International’s emphasis on the knowledge and role of Mir Hossein Mousavi in the 1988 massacre are challenged. Amnesty International has been tasked with “correcting” its report. The letter claims that Amnesty International’s revelations are aimed at making Mir Hossein Mousavi the main perpetrator of the killings. The signatories of the letter called on Amnesty International to “restore dignity” to Mir Hossein Mousavi.
You can read the text of this statement below:
Distinguished heads of Amnesty International’s Iran Department
On December 4, 2018, Amnesty International published a report entitled “Blood-stained Secrets” concerning the mass execution of Iranian political prisoners in 1988, which aimed to expose the reality of a horrific crime. Unfortunately, this important report has in some places been supplemented by obvious distortions to the core of the truth, that we consider ourselves obliged to express.
We believe that Amnesty International is a non-governmental organization that defends human rights, and therefore its actions should not create the illusion that it is interfering in the political arena of other countries or that its human rights goals are tainted by the political ideas and intentions of factions and groups.
But the way Amnesty International’s Iran Department officials have, for some time now, been reporting on the events in their interviews and writing, reinforces the suspicion that they are pursuing other goals than discovering the truth. Social networks have somehow abandoned the known perpetrators of the crime and the members of the death squads, and have repeatedly targeted Mir Hossein Mousavi, the prime minister of Iran in the 1980s and one of the leaders of the Green Movement in Iran, who is under house arrest and has no possibility of defense.
For example, Amnesty International Iran once again published part of the same report on social media on August 20, 2019 and used only the hashtag Mir Hossein Mousavi on all platforms instead of naming members of the death squad and perpetrators, as if he alone was responsible for these tragic events. Such an approach is no longer defending the rights of those killed and their families but abusing them for partisan and factional purposes. However, we, the signatories of this letter, believe that the prosecution of the crimes of 1988 is a national and moral necessity and should be pursued, regardless of all loves and hates.
In this context, we emphasize that whenever Amnesty International or any other institution provides strong and genuine evidence of Mir Hossein Mousavi’s sympathy with the executions of the summer of 1988 or his possible role in this crime, we in no way seek to mitigate or defend him. We will not take responsibility for him, because we believe that those executions are a deep wound on the body of the Iranian nation that will not heal unless justice is done. But what Amnesty International Iran has so far presented in this regard is a distorted and fake narrative that it wants to sell to everyone through noise and propaganda.
In a report two years ago, Amnesty International claimed that Mir Hossein Mousavi had not denied and even justified the executions in an interview with Austrian television on December 29, 2006 about his tenure as Prime Minister. The report also claims that an Austrian television reporter asked Mr Mousavi about the mass executions that year. Both of these claims are completely refuted for every reason. In fact, these two allegations are the basis of an accusation against someone who, a few months before the illegal siege, explicitly called the 1988 executions a “crime” in a speech, recalling the power structure in the Islamic Republic and emphasizing his innocence of these accusations. As everyone knows, in this structure, the judiciary is in direct contact with and receives orders from the leadership of the Islamic Republic. Moreover, the video of the Austrian television interview with Engineer Mousavi, released by Amnesty International in December 2016, does not prove such an accusation at all, but we, the signatories of this letter, believe that the Iranian Department of Amnesty International’s interpretation has taken over in a way that distorts reality, which we regret.
In this short and fragmented video, the question of the Austrian TV reporter is not heard, because it has been voiced over and therefore the authenticity of the cited version is in question. What is heard is the voice of an absent narrator who utters a sentence about the growing concern of Iranians abroad about human rights violations in Iran, followed by a headline that reads: “Prime Minister on death row.” It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving his post, but Mir Hossein Mousavi’s response is audible, in which he neither denies nor defends the execution of political prisoners. In this interview, he does not say anything about the executions, but deals with Operation Morsad against the Mojahedin Khalq Organization’s attack on Iran.
Now our question is, where is the original version of the video? How did you come to these accusations based on a vague and edited audio video and assume it was proven? And what is behind this insistence and all this propaganda about it?
Amnesty International also reiterated the allegations against Mir Hossein Mousavi in a public statement on 20 September 2020, although with the repeated repetition of something unreal there is no room for questioning. However, the most credible documents on the mass execution of political prisoners in 1988 (including the memoirs of Ayatollah Montazeri, the Deputy Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the 1980s, and the audiotape of his speeches exposing the facts of the executions) show no evidence of Engineer Mir Hossein’s role. Mr Mousavi himself said in a speech in 2010, the audio file of which was made available to the public: “We were in complete ignorance and when we found out, we tried to prevent those executions. It is untrue that I was involved, we were not allowed to get involved at all… However, this is a crime that took place, and the fact is that still no one knows the true dimensions of it, and perhaps in the future it will be possible to pay more and more comprehensive attention to this incident and its dimensions.”
This part of the speech also shows that, contrary to the claims of Amnesty International Iran Department officials, Mousavi himself confirmed that he was informed about it somewhere in the middle of the tragedy and that his ignorance related to the start of the executions. He basically did not need to explain his decisions to the then Prime Minister. However, we believe and emphasize that an independent fact-finding committee should be formed to clarify the various dimensions of this crime and to clarify the type and extent of responsibility of each individual, not to propagate the issue in such a way that the perpetrators of the crime all remain in the shadows, and the person against whom no evidence has been discovered so far is immediately made the main culprit. This is, in fact, the same trend that Amnesty International’s Iran Department has been trying to fuel for the past two years, when the political climate in Iran has become more turbulent than ever.
Finally, it should be noted that an institution such as Amnesty International does not belong to a particular political group, but to all free human beings concerned with the defense of human rights, and therefore the publication of reports with such blatant distortions are a blow to this ideal. Therefore, we demand Amnesty International rectify as soon as possible the erroneous sections relating to Engineer Mir Hossein Mousavi in the above-mentioned reports and statements so as to restore his dignity.
Attached is the opinion of two current and former senior experts of Amnesty International, each of whom has been active in the Iranian Department of the organization for many years, and their opinions confirm our words.
MEK Manipulated Amnesty International – Iran Interlink, Weekly Digest – Sep 25, 2020
The Amnesty International Report Which Whitewashes The MEK (Mojahedin Khalq, Rajavi cult)
Nejat Society, January 08 2019:… When approached in person, Amnesty International officials have not accepted responsibility for the content of this report and have instead referred complainants to the authors and asked them to send their complaints to the writers directly, which is quite odd. Amnesty International did not deny the role of the MEK and Shadi Sadr. One of the central complaints about this shameful propaganda piece by Amnesty International …
The Amnesty International Report Which Whitewashes The MEK (Mojahedin Khalq, Rajavi cult)
By Nejat Bloggers Last updated Jan 8, 2019
Towards the end of 2018, a flawed and suspicious 140-page report was published by Amnesty International (AI) about events which took place in Iran in the summer of 1988. This report, after more than 30 years, talked about the alleged executions of Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) members. The MEK was referred to as a peaceful democratic opposition to the Islamic Republic of Iran even though the MEK was conducting terrorist and military operations against Iran before and after that time.
Examination shows that the report was written by Raha Bahreini, Mansoureh Mills, Shadi Sadr, and of course mainly by the MEK in Albania, and it was approved for publication by Philip Luther, research director for MENA (Middle East and North Africa) at AI.
Following publication of the report many families and victims of the MEK sent letters of complaint to Mr Luther at firstname.lastname@example.org about anomalies in the report. To date, these have remained unanswered and AI has apparently adopted a policy of ignoring and silence.
When approached in person, AI officials have not accepted responsibility for the content of this report and have instead referred complainants to the authors at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org and asked them to send their complaints to the writers directly, which is quite odd. Amnesty International did not deny the role of the MEK and Shadi Sadr in preparing this report.
One of the central complaints about this shameful whitewashing propaganda piece by AI concerns the war crimes committed by the MEK in its Eternal Light operation. This operation took place less than a month before the executions. Yet amazingly in these 140 pages there was no mention of the over ambitious and doomed military invasion into Iran in which more than 3000 MEK members – many non-combatant civilians – were killed. Responsibility for the Eternal Light operation lies entirely with the MEK, in particular the leaders Massoud and Maryam Rajavi.
Another glaring fault is that all those whose testimony was included in the report are supporters of the MEK. Yet there are many, many families both in and outside Iran who do not support the MEK but whose testimony was not invited. The report cannot be said to be fair or independent based on this omission.
Among other complaints are that the report does not mention that currently the MEK, facilitated by the Albanian government, still does not allow families to have contact with their loved ones trapped in this group in the closed camp in Manez in Albania. This represents an ongoing violation of basic human rights which families have complained about for several years now.
It is a great pity that a human rights organization with more than a half-century background, has become a tool for political games in the region, and has produced such a long-outdated, narrowly researched and biased report, without addressing any of the complaints it has provoked.
In this regard, the first letter of complaint sent by the families to the Secretary General of Amnesty International Mr. Kumi Naidoo at email@example.com can be found at the link below:
Shadi Sadr of Justice4Iran is the nominal head of several organisations supported by anti-Iran neoconservatives. She frequently travels to Albania and Paris to liaison with MEK and Maryam Rajavi. She has written pro-MEK articles and takes a pro-MEK stance. She has no credibility whatsoever in the wider Iranian community.
My MEK @gdnlongread (audio)
— Arron Merat (@a_merat) November 30, 2018