MPs and Peers call for a firm response to Iranian regime's systematic human rights violations and demand protection for the Iranian refugees in Camp Liberty.
In a cross party parliamentary conference on Tuesday, October 28, organised by the British Parliamentary Committee for Iran Freedom (BPCIF), MPs and Peers from both Houses discussed the deteriorating human rights situation in Iran, new wave of public hangings, acid attacks on women and the plight of Iranian refugees in Camp Liberty, Iraq.
Speakers at the conference included Lord Carlile of Berriew QC CBE, Mr Struan Stevenson, Chairman of EP Delegation for Relations with Iraq, Mr David Amess MP, Rt Hon David Jones MP, Rt Hon. Lord Dholakia, Mr Brian Binley MP, Lord Clarke of Hampstead CBE, Mr Mark Williams MP, Mr Mike Hancock MP, Lord Cotter, Ms Dowlat Nowrouzi, UK Representative of NCRI and Malcolm Fowler, member of the Law Society.
During last week, thousands of people defied suppressive security measures by the regime's security forces to take part in demonstrations in various cities of Iran, in particular in Tehran, to protest against the recent wave of acid attacks against Iranian women that have taken over 25 victims. The protesters accused state sponsored security organs of orchestrating these vicious attacks, which follows discussion by the Iranian parliament of a new bill to confront the so called “mal-veiling”.
In another measure signalling increased repression targeting women in Iran, the Iranian rulers executed a 26 year old university student and a designer, Ms. Rayhaneh Jabbari, after spending seven and a half years in prison. Ms Jabbari was hanged on October 25 despite international calls to halt her execution due to serious concerns over the fairness of her trial.
The UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran, Dr Ahmed Shaheed, due to speak on his new human rights report on Iran at the UN later today, noted that Mrs Jabbari's conviction was allegedly based on confessions made while under threat, and the court failed to take into account all evidence into its judgment.
Tobias Ellwood MP, Parliamentary Under
Secretary of State for the Foreign and
Tobias Ellwood MP, the Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East while expressing concern for Mrs Jabbari's execution and the UK's strong opposition to the use of the death penalty said in his statement: “Actions like these do not help Iran build confidence or trust with the international community. I urge Iran to put a moratorium on all executions”.
Dr Ahmed Shaheed expressed concern about “a surge in executions in the country” over the past year noting that in some cases the victims were put to death clearly for political activities. According to international press, Dr Ahmed Shaheed also notes that the situation of women in Iran has worsened.
Dr Ahmed Shaheed, Human Rights
Council Special Rapporteur on Iran
The guest speaker, Mr Struan Stevenson, Chairman of European Parliament’s Delegation for Relations with Iraq (2009-2014) and the President of European Iraqi Freedom Association (EIFA), emphasized in his speech to the conference that “the Iranian regime is the foremost cause of the growth and expansion of fundamentalism and extremism in the region and throughout the Islamic World. The international campaign by the United States and the international coalition against ISIS will surely fail unless the Iranian regime is completely ejected from Syria and Iraq. Silence regarding Tehran’s meddling in the region and the activities of the IRGC and its terrorist militias will simply fan the flames of war in the region.”
Brian Binley MP, British Conservative
Brian Binley MP warned that once again the Iranian regime tries to dupe the west during the ongoing nuclear talks. The chairman of International Parliamentary Campaign in Defence of Ashraf (IPCDA), Brian Binley MP, reiterating on the rights of Camp Liberty residents as Protected Persons under the fourth Geneva Convention said that Camp Liberty must be declared as a refugee camp under the supervision of UNHCR and the inhumane medical blockade against the residents must end.
Rt Hon. Lord Dholakia, Liberal Democrat
He added that all oppressive decisions by the Maliki Government taken against the camp residents must be annulled and Camp Liberty’s dossier must be referred to agencies and individuals in the Government of Iraq not acting on the order of the Iranian regime or its affiliated groups.
Referring to the recent acid attacks on women and the rising number of executions in Iran, the Rt Hon. Lord Dholakia said, “Iranian rulers must face justice in international courts for their human rights violations.”
Lord Clarke of Hampstead, Former
Chairman of the Labour Party
Lord Clarke of Hampstead criticised international community for its silence on human rights violations and said “the world must speak up against human rights abuses in Iran.”
Mark Williams MP said, “we must never lose sight on human rights when talking to Iran on nuclear issue.”
Mark Williams MP, British Welsh