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Consultative Counsel of Human Rights member speaks out against 1988 massacre in Iran
On February 1, a Civil Society hearing was held in Geneva, with the purpose of drawing attention to not only the massacre in 1988 of 30,000 political prisoners, but also to draw attention to the actions of the Iranian regime against those involved in the latest protests.

Concern for the well-being of those protesters who have been taken into custody is mounting among NGOs and other international leaders, many of whom can point to the previous violent actions of the regime throughout its nearly forty years in power.

One of the key speakers was Professor Jean Ziegler, who is a member of the Consultative Committee of the Council for Human Rights, which is a subsidiary organ of the Council for Human Rights in the United Nations.

“We are here this morning for two reasons: to commemorate and recall the martyrdom of about thirty-three thousand young and not so young women and men of Iran during the massacres of 1988, and secondly, to see how it’s possible to put an end to the impunity, the impunity of the murderers who are still, some of them, in power and at work, how to hand them over to international justice, which is the mechanism created to put an end to this totally scandalous impunity,” said Ziegler.

He pointed out that although the 1988 massacre was a large one, this tactic has continued to be used by the regime to maintain control in the intervening years. From the beginning of the regime, it was clear that the Mojahedin was a threat, one that has been actively persecuted in the intervening years.

Throughout the years, the Mojahedin has become the core of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which has been active in bringing the world’s attention to the human rights violations in Iran as the regime has continued to rule with its fundamentalist agenda.

Part of Ziegler’s speech included a history lesson of the Mojahedin throughout the last 40 years and noted that there were many martyrs throughout the years of the regime. He asked how the regime could be stopped and then provided an answer that clearly demonstrated the importance of the international community.

“Through the mobilization, at last, of this Western public opinion, shot through with political reasons, with commercial reasons, the search for profit, Persia’s an immense country,…this European public opinion must wake up, this morning’s meeting, and yet again, I thank the Civil Society for having made it possible, plays a part in this effort, it must wake up and demand that this impunity ceases,” said Ziegler. “For there to be a Commission of Inquiry, it is also necessary for there to be identification of the perpetrators of these crimes against humanity.”

Ziegler also spoke about the “Death Committees” and how they violated international law and the basic rights of those who were eventually executed. He also noted that once a Commission of Inquiry had done its work, that a Special Tribunal would need to be convened to deal with the crimes against humanity perpetuated by the Iranian regime.

Throughout the hearing, it was clear that not only was there a legal case against the regime, it was also evident that the regime’s activities had continued. The 1988 massacre may have been the largest single incident of the regime’s murderous intent, but it was not the last, as the intervening years have demonstrated.

For the leaders present at this meeting, it was clear that the international community needs to speak up and speak out against the regime and its actions against the Iranian people. 

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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