›››››The so-called security forces of the regime gunned down two people in the Sardasht region. The victims were identified as Tofiq Suri, and Salam Abdullahzadah from the village of ‘Moraghan’ a suburb of Sardasht (Iranian Kurdistan). The bodies were returned to their families but with the condition that they must be buried at night without any public ceremonies.
›››››The body of Yassin Anvari, the son of Jamli Mala Karim from the village of ‘Tarkhan’ a suburb of the city of Baneh was found. He was a well-known and respected individual. It is not known who was behind this killing and why; however, this was the third slaughter of this sort in the month of August only. Previously the bodies of Mohsin Mustafazadeh (who was brutally tortured and murdered) and Ata Chawshin were found. Kurdistan region in Iran being under the complete control of the regime’s thugs can be an easy target of such murderous attacks.
›››››According to news obtained from ‘KURDISTAN’ the vigilant forces of the regime attacked a merchant caravan, and as the result a man named ‘Said Hashem Mahmoudi’ 23 years old and son of Sayed Sadegh from the village of ‘Khor-Khora’ suburb of Salmas (Iranian Kurdistan) was killed. His offence was that he carried a 30 meter fabric to sustain his family’s daily needs.
›››››TEHRAN, Dec. 2 (Xinhuanet) -- Two people have been killed in a mine explosion which occurred in the outskirts of a village in Iran's western Kurdestan Province, the IRNA news agency reported on Monday. The two were on their way to visit their relatives in Kokh NivehKhan village when they approached the mine and the blast occurred. Dozens of others have been killed or wounded in the border city from mine explosions in past years.
RFE/RL - Hiwa Qavami, a reporter from the
Kurdistan Province town of Sanandaj, told RFE/RL's Persian service on 12
November that the local judiciary has banned local newspaper distributors
from carrying special inserts from reformist publications like "Hayat-i No"
and "Iran." The reason for this is that the inserts contained a great deal of
news about the
TEHRAN, Oct 24 (AFP) - Iran's interior minister said in remarks published Thursday that Kurdistan province was the "safest in the country", just days after a rebel group in the area was blamed for killing a Revolutionary Guard officer.
The killing of Saleh Sharifi in Iranian Kurdistan was blamed on the separatist Kurdish group Komala, which has been largely inactive since 1986 after being crushed by security forces.
The minister, Abdolvahed Musavi Lari, denied the group had returned to militant activities, saying "there is no tension in Kurdistan," and that the province is "the safest in the country", in remarks published in the Seday-e Edalat daily.
Musavi Lari did not comment on the murder, though government spokesman Abdollah Ramezanzadeh, the province's former governor, said on Wednesday an investigation was underway.
Iran is worried about the revival of separatist sentiments among its six million strong Kurdish minority in the event of a US attack on neighboring Iraq, which could see Kurds in northern Iraq gain independence or autonomy from Baghdad.
The Komala and the rival Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran are the two main Kurdish rebel groups active within the Islamic Republic.
After briefly allying themselves with the emerging government after the 1979 revolution, the rebels were ruthlessly crushed by the security forces, particularly the Revolutionary Guards, in the 1980s.
On the 8 October 2002, a PDKI delegation headed by Secretary-general was greeted by Jiani Magzini, the Commission’s second in charge and Terressa Alberog the Commission’s Asia region chief at the Commission’s headquarters in Geneva. Both sides stressed on the need for the UN special human rights investigator to Iran. Mr. Magzini added that despite the Commission’s decision to remove Iran from the list of countries under the Commission’s scrutiny, the Commission continues to pressure the government in Iran via other channels to respect human rights.
In other sessions of the meeting, the PDKI delegation pointed out that the Commission needs to address the violations of human rights in Iran in the framework of national demands, and requested that the Commission must not limit its activities to the violations of individual rights and pay more attention to the political aspects of the issue of human rights and the demands of our people.
In the last part of the meeting, the condition of political prisoners who are under execution order was discussed. The PDKI delegation also pointed out the rights of Iranian Kurdish refugees living in Iraq and Turkey and presented several recommendations in this regard.
A PDKI delegation composed of Sharif Behruz, Director of Public Relation in Canada along with Vali Dolatkhahi, a PDKI member, met Christopher Hull, the head of Iran and Iraq section in the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. In this meeting a number of issues such as Iran-Canada relations, human rights concerns and the conditions of Kurds in Iran were discussed.
Madam Mitterrand, the wife of the former French President Francois Mitterrand and the head of the 'Librete Foundation' and an old Kurdish friend accompanied by Kandal Nazan the head of the 'Kurdish Institute' in Paris visited the Politburo of PDKI on 5 October. The delegation was greeted by Mistafa Hijri, Hassan Rastigar, Hassan Sharafi and Hussien Madani members of Politburo and a number of leadership council.
Madam Mitterrand was in Iraqi Kurdistan to attend the reopening of the Iraqi Kurdish Parliament on the 4th of October, first such meeting in 6 years.
A European delegation composed of Mr. Montesquiu, a French Senator and a member of European Parliament and Mr. Neudeck the director of the German Foundation “Cup Anamor” and number of reporters and photographers visited the Politburo headquarters in Koi-Sanjaq, Iraqi Kurdistan on Saturday, 19 October 2002. They were greeted by a leadership delegate consisting of Mistafa Hijri, Hassan Rastigar and Hassan Sharafi Politburo members and Fatah Kaveyan and Omar Balaki, members of Central Committee.
The two delegations in a three hour meeting discussed a variety of issues concerning Kurds and the region, and exchanged views in these regards.
Comrade Abdullah Hassanzadeh, the Secretary-general met Karl Schramek the Austrian ambassador in the Organization for European Security, Development and Cooperation in 4 October 2002. In this meeting, Jalil Gadani, member of Central Committee and Khosrow Abdullahi, PDKI International Relation chief were also present.
In this friendly visit, both sides exchanged views on the region’s circumstances. On the Kurdish issue as an important regional matter, Dr. Schramek insisted that without a just solution to the issue, a permanent peace in the region is impossible. Dr. Schramek also expressed his support for rational and realistic policies of PDKI.
17th of September 2002, 10 years has elapsed from the assassination of Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi, the Secretary-general of PDKI, Fatah Abdouli, a member of Central Committee and the Party’s international representative, Homayoun Ardalan, the Party’s representative in Germany, and Nouri Dehkurdi a friend of the Party by the mercenaries of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
In the evening of Tuesday September 17th, while a few hours after the completion of the Socialists International’s sessions in Berlin, Dr. Sharafkandi and his associates were discussing the circumstances of the country and the need for further alliance of the Iranian forces with a number of Iranian opposition figures in a restaurant, were attacked and gunned down by several trained terrorists of Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) with the direct decree and order of the highest authorities of the regime.
Dr. Sharafkandi had taken on the Party’s top position after the assassination of Dr. Ghassemlou, then the Secretary-general. In this position with his ability and creativity, he very soon proved that he really deserved the succession of an enlightened and competent leader such as Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou. Dr. Sharafkandi in this imperative responsibility acted so intelligibly and comprehensibly that in a short period, he faded away the despondency and despair from all those people that had fallen into by the loss of Dr. Ghassemlou. At the meantime, he made the regime which believed with exterminating Dr. Ghassemlou, Democratic Party will demolish or face leadership dilemma, confront another wave of apprehension. Accordingly, the regime in Tehran without learning a lesson from its past miscalculations, ordered the elimination of Dr. Sharafkandi from its highest hierarchy, and conducted this terrorist act in Berlin by its sinful assassins.
The assassination of Dr. Sharafkandi, no doubts, resulted in a major loss for PDKI in particular and the Kurdish resistance in general. It also led to an enormous grief for the Kurdish nation, all the Iranian freedom activists, and all the Party’s friends world wide. That is why it has attracted such an extensive international reflection and coverage.
The police and judicial authorities very seriously pursued the terrorists, and with the custody and prosecution of the perpetrators, they opened the files of Mykonos tragedy which attracted so much public opinion towards the case in the process that took more than 3 years. The court at last delivered the final verdict in April 10, 1997 in regards to the crimes of the perpetrators of the terror, including the regime’s high ranking officials as the order-givers of the crime, and it revealed once and for all the terrorist image of this regime to the world public opinion. In this way, it nullified all the regime’s attempts to derail the procedures of the court or hijack public opinion to escape the punishments of such an offence. Rather, this time it exposed the terrorist regime’s true image of deceit with strong evidence and according to the decision of a credible court in a European country. The initiatives of almost all the countries of the European Union to recall their embassies in Tehran in reality was the endorsement of the court’s verdict and admitting the regime’s terrorist nature. Tehran’s threats as a counter-action to the verdict, despite having effects on the position of many of these countries, neither affected the importance of the verdict nor did it succeed in leaving the regime with any honor or respect.
Dr Sharafkandi was a patriot and a democrat who had a strong belief in democracy. He regarded the struggle of bringing democracy to Iran as the duty of every citizen and every Iranian freedom activist. He considered cooperation and solidarity among patriotic Iranian forces as the key to the victory of Iranian peoples and the defeat of despotism ruling Iran. In this regard, he worked as hard as he could, and unfortunately in the course of this struggle he sacrificed himself.
Dr. Sharafkandi, with all of his heart, felt the oppression that the Kurdish people and other peoples of Iran had been facing, and regarded the struggle aimed at eradicating such an injustice as legitimate. He had a firm belief in the rights of the peoples of Iran to self-determination in the framework of a democratic Iran. Meanwhile, he considered the Kurdish brothers and sisters in other countries as part of a single nation, and he would always keep the interests of the nation as his priority even at the expense of the Party interests.
Dr. Sharafkandi was a devoted democrat and an experienced leader who supported social justice and opposed any sorts of discrimination. In the process of establishing social justice, he believed in the values of social democracy; still, he did not view the existing socialism without any short-coming, nor did he accept the dictatorship of proletariat. He disagreed with some of the right-leaning leftist parties and the radicalism of some others. He never concealed such beliefs, and he would openly spell them out; as a result, he played an important role alongside our legendary Kurdish leader Dr. Ghassemlou to adopt “Democratic Socialism” as the long-term objective of the Party. Such attributes had granted this leader with such a revolutionary and democratic image in the real sense of the word.
Dr Sharafkandi was a political-intellectual character who devoted his life serving his nation; truth and justice were the attributes that this man was known for. It is evident that the loss of a comrade such as Dr. Sharafkandi for PDKI and any patriotic Kurd is a major impairment. However, with the loss of Dr. Sharafkandi, PDKI once again proved this reality that it can carry heavy wounds, but it would never bow to the enemy. It is a Party that can heal the loss of great leaders such as Ghassemlou and Sharafkandi with collective leadership to prevent the realization of regime’s cruel intentions.
It is an honour that after 10 years of Dr. Sharafkandi’s martyrdom, friends and foes can observe that how firm the Party has stood on the difficult path of struggle; furthermore, it has enjoyed such an international and domestic prestige and credibility to the extent that it has become the trusted Party of all the people of Kurdistan. It is disappointing that the IRI despite having a gloomy record of terror and terrorism, has not been treated and punished the way it should have been by the international community at the era of the global war against terrorism; consequently, terror and turmoil have not been abandoned by the regime, rather the forms have only changed.
In regards to the appeasing policies of some countries in regards to the IRI, the people of Iran especially in the last few years have stepped into struggle in different forms for the ousting of the despotic regime to replace it with a democratic one. Such a struggle and resistance is so much apparent that even the high ranking officials of the regime can not conceal their fretfulness over the fragileness of their reign. Without any doubts, the broadening of such a struggle will realize the hopes of the martyrs of freedom and it will for ever force the regime to retreat.
In the tenth anniversary of Dr. Sharafkandi and his associates’ martyrdom, once again, we renew our pledges with the souls of these companions and all the martyrs of Kurdistan that until the attainment of their wills and wishes, we remain faithful to their objectives, and keep the flag of PDKI still standing.
Dr. Ali-Reza Nourizadeh
THE Kurds in Iran, despite being the pioneers of the first Iranian kingdom, and the Medes era considered being the start of civilization, and unlike Turkey where Kurds are called “the mountainous Turks”, no one in Iran has dared to make such insulting remarks concerning the Kurds in Iran, Kurds have been suppressed by far more than any other Iranian nationalities.
Despite this, never in the pages of Iranian history, even during the most oppressive periods on the regional authorities in the Reza Shah era in the early decades of the twentieth century where extraordinary injustice was inflicted upon Kurds, they have never faced so much oppression as the last two decades of mass killings and cultural alienation. To prove this bitter reality, it is enough to shed some light on the number of dead either from military aggression or executions and assassinations carried out by the intelligence apparatus of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the last 23 years; furthermore, add the segregated and torn-apart families, then you will realize that the crack-down on Kurds in an organized and well-planned scheme has been one of the strategic objective of this regime. All the Iranian ethnic groups are faced with oppression and injustice by a regime identified with beard and turban, but their Kurdness along with their Sunnism, a religious sect different from the official Shiite sect can make the Kurds of Iran an apparent enemy. An Iranian Azeri is subjugated as mush as a Persian, Loristani, Gillani or kirmanshahi because an Azeri is a Shiite so there is no doubt in his/her Islamism, but Kurds, Baluchis, Turkamans and Talishis and all the Sunnis of western Iran have special circumstances. In general, because Kurds among other Iranian ethnic groups have been more politically active, first due to their integration with the national movements of Kurds in other parts of Kurdistan, and secondly in Iran, Kurds relative to other ethnic groups in the last century have been more autonomous, and even following the World War Two, they established an autonomous republic. Since then, it has nurtured those such as Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou who have played an important role in the equality movement and struggle; therefore, they have been more suspicious in the eyes of the central governments in Iran especially to the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Following the Iranian Revolution, Democratic Party of Kurdistan that had a considerable and effective role in organizing and instigating the people of Kurdistan against the previous regime in Iran, was hopeful some of its fundamental demands would be met within the framework of the new regime in Iran, so Kurds could at least play a role in conducting the affairs of Kurdistan. However, Ayatollah Khomeini did not even respect the will of the people of Kurdistan when he prevented Dr. Ghassemlou, the elected representative of the region to participate in the assembly of experts’ first meeting (the council in charge of drafting the first constitution, and now in charge of electing the supreme leader). The Ayatollah made unexpected attacks on Dr. Ghassemlou and the Party in the first gathering of the assembly. With the decree of the Ayatollah, the full scale attacks of the revolutionary guards started against Kurdish people, and in the cities of Mahabad, Paveh, Sanandaj, and other cities and villages of Kurdistan, waves of bloodshed spread. In the city of Paveh, following the troops’ entry into the city, the revolutionary guards would tie up civilian Kurds to their walls and windows group by group, and they would rain their bodies with bullets.
You all have seen the photos that I had taken out of Iran in the August of 1979, and given them to the English and French media, where in it two brothers of my Friend, Farhad Rashidian were shot dead in the airport of Sanandaj. Dr. Ghassemlou later told me that these pictures revealed the true image of Ayatollah Khomeini’s regime, and the international community soon realized that another Gandhi had not emerged, but rather the tragedies of Hitler and Stalin had been repeated. The regime in Iran never took into account number of concepts such as historical importance, geographical location and a common devotion for a land in regards to Kurds. From the perspective of the leader of the regime, Kurds are those Sunni infidels who believe in Omar and the injustices inflicted upon Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad.
The same thinking was dominant on those who assassinated Dr. Ghassemlou in Vienna with the order of divine leader of the regime and its intelligence minister Ali Fallahian who following the prayer sharpen their swords and load their pistols. The killers of Dr. Sadegh Sharafkandi, - Dr. Ghassemlou’s successor - and his associates in the Mykonous Restaurant in Berlin, whether the Lebanese who prayed towards the shrine of supreme leader of Iran or those several Iranian conductors and organizers, all believed that by taking a few more lives, they will be rewarded with a larger share in heaven.
Several weeks ago, Ali-Aga Muhammadi, the deputy of Iran radio television and special advisor to the supreme leader in Iraqi Kurdish and Shiite opposition affairs, after a trip to Baghdad and talks and kisses with Saddam’s deputy and several other ministries, in his return report to the higher officials, he expressed his concerns about the attempts of Kurds to establish a federal Iraq. He also pointed out that the Kurds of Iran especially the Democratic Party of Kurdistan have allied with the Kurds of Iraq to establish a broader Kurdish authority. Immediately after the report, three members of PDKI who had been held in prison for a long period of time were executed.
Years ago, when the conformitists and the ruling elite in Iran accused Kurds of separatism, Dr. Ghassemlou declared that whoever doubts the Iranianism of Kurds in Iran, should come and see who is more Iranian than us; we who have established the first civilization in Iran, or those who have chosen an Islamic epithet instead of Iran. It is puzzling, that a political organization whose principal slogan is Democracy for Iran and Autonomy for Kurdistan, must prove its conviction with juriscouncil to prove its Iranianism from the perspective of the regime’s officials, while they choose an alien Iraqi as the head of judiciary and no one questions where he has obtained his identity card.
When Khatami appointed Abdullah Ramazanzadeh, a half Kurdish specialist in the field of ethnology from the Belgian university as the governor of Kurdistan province, it was expected that things have changed in Kurdistan; however, very soon, Ramazanzadeh was recalled to Tehran and he almost ended up in the notorious Avin prison because contrary to the wishes of supreme leader and his mercenaries and guards in Kurdistan, he was committed that the local officials must be utilized for conducting the affairs of Kurdistan. Today, Kurdistan is under the siege of revolutionary guards and the control of intelligence corps. The most Iranian of Iranians, meaning Kurds, under excessive oppression and with all the pains and wounds, they still cry out “Democracy for Iran, Autonomy for Kurdistan”.
This was Dr. Nourizadeh’s speech in the French Parliament honouring Dr. Sharafkandi’s 10th anniversary.
New Wave of Executions in Iran
15 October 2002
Following the statements issued by our Party on the 9 & 11 of this month (October 2002), concerning the execution of three activists and members of our Party, we were informed that another member of our Party, Saleh GODARZI, aged 39, was executed by the headsmen of the Islamic Regime of Iran in the prison of Sanandaj (Iranian Kurdistan) in the early morning of 13 October 2002.
Saleh, a resident of a village in the suburb of Kamyaran (Iranian Kurdistan), joined our Party in the wake of the Islamic Republic’s reign on power. However, due to a set of troubles besetting his family, he had to leave the ranks of the Party, giving himself up to the local authorities of the regime so that he could resume his civilian life. He was arrested and brutally tortured. Though, having been freed from prison, he was constantly being prosecuted by local security agents and officials and other oppressive organs of the regime.
In 1999, while he was working in Teheran, he was once again arrested and sent back to prison. After a while, he was returned to Sanandaj prison, where he was unjustly condemned to death and eventually executed on the aforesaid date.
While strictly condemning this inhuman action of the regime, Political Bureau sincerely expresses its most heartfelt condolences to the honourable family of the martyred, to his relatives and the people of Kamyaran in particular, and the Kurdish people in general, expecting at the same time of international human rights organizations to condemn such criminal acts of Islamic Republic so that they would refrain from perpetrating such cruel acts.
Paris, 10 October 2002
In a release published on 9 October 2002, the political Bureau of our Party informed the general public of the execution of a member of our Party Mr. Hamzeh GHADERI on 7 October 2002, by the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Mr. Ghaderi was born in the city of Sardasht (Iranian Kurdistan), and was arrested in 1997 by the regime on the grounds of “becoming member of PDKI”. After a sham trial, he was sentenced to death. After spending over five years in the sinister prisons of the Iranian regime and being subjected to torture and inhuman treatments, he was executed at dawn on 7 October 2002.
According to the information we have received from Iranian Kurdistan, the lives of about ten other Kurdish political prisoners who were sentenced to death are threatened; not to mention hundreds of other Kurdish political prisoners who have been sentenced to long prison terms.
We condemn this crime of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and call upon all human rights organisations, in particular the United Nations Human Rights Commission and Amnesty International to strongly condemn this heinous crime and take urgent measures to save the lives of other prisoners.
Regarding the Islamic Republic’s intensification of its obstinate actions, you are most courteously informed herewith that in resent days a new wave of executing political prisoners has been resumed in Iran. Among those executed were four members of our Party:
1- Hamzeh Ghaderi, from Sardasht, 2- Jalil Zewa-ee, from Sardasht, 3- Khalid Showghi, from a village in the suburb of Urumieh, 4- Salah Goodarzi, from Kamyaran
They were executed on the 6-13 October 2002, the most disgusting fact being that some of the executed had spent their periods of conviction in prison. Besides, death penalties have been issued against some other prisoners who are in sheer danger of execution.
Taking cognizance of the danger threatening the lives of yet greater numbers of political prisoners in Iran, your objection against the demeanour of the Iranian authorities and applying pressure on them might dissuade them from executing other political prisoners.
Most Respectfully Yours,
Political Bureau of Democratic Bureau Party of Iranian Kurdistan
25 October 2002
12 October 2002 - According to the two statements of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan’s (PDKI) Political Bureau, Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE, all members of PDKI, after spending years in prison have been hanged within the last week, and their bodies have been returned to their families with one condition that their burials take place quietly without any public ceremonies.
The execution of Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE takes place in circumstances that during their years of imprisonment no information has been available about their trials and convictions and as the result, the League for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran and the international organizations defending human rights have been unaware of their detainment.
The execution of these political prisoners one week after the public execution of five convicts with ordinary offences, once again ascertained this historical-political reality that carrying out mass public executions have always been used as a cloak for political executions, and the persistence of oppressive and self-interested states for the continuance and existence of execution has to do with the fact that it can be used as an instrument of terror, oppression and strangulation. It is enough to compare the political terror and executions in Iran with the number of executions related to ordinary offences in the last two decades.
Therefore, regardless of ethical and humanitarian principles and standards in rejecting executions, abolishing death penalty is essential for the attainment of freedom of consciousness, religion and expression in brining social and political democracy. It is not a coincidence that one of the preconditions of joining the European Union is the abolishment of death penalty.
The League along with condemning these inhuman and filthy actions, and above all the execution of Hamza GHADERI, Khalid SHOWGHI and Jalil ZEWAYEE, demands the release of all political prisoners and the renewal of the trial of all prisoners who have been predestined to death without having access to a just tribunal conforming to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international standards of civil and political rights. The League also calls upon the international organizations defending human rights and international institutions, particularly the United Nations Human Rights Commission and European Parliament and Union to take necessary measures to force the government of Islamic Republic of Iran to comply with these demands.
The League for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran
LUXEMBOURG - AFP: The
European Union will launch a path-breaking dialogue on human rights with Iran
in December in a bid to shore up embattled reformists in the Islamic
republic, officials said Monday. The 15-nation EU is seeking to reinforce its
political and economic interests in Iran through the unprecedented dialogue,
despite the country being labelled by the United States as part of an "axis
of evil". "The European Union wants this critical dialogue really to get
results," Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller of Denmark, which holds the EU
presidency, said. "There are no preconditions," he told a news conference
after talks among EU foreign ministers here. "We want the reformists of the
Iranian society to be helped by the European Union. They are the majority of
Outside the Luxembourg talks, several hundred Iranian protestors sought EU backing against the death penalty in their homeland. The protestors, kept back by police, staged fake hangings in a nearby car park. Calling for "urgent action" from the EU, they brandished placards urging the bloc to present a strong resolution in the United Nations condemning Iran's record on rights. But the Danish minister said the EU would not be tabling a UN resolution, explaining "we'll give the dialogue a chance".
"If another country outside the European Union is going to table a resolution, then the 15 members of the European Union will look at that resolution and find a common position," Moeller said. EU foreign ministers said instead "the EU will convey its deep concern at the serious violations of human rights and the lack of progress in a number of areas" in the UN. These included violations of freedom of expression and association, "and systematic discrimination against women and girls, as well as against minorities", the ministers said in a statement after their talks in Luxembourg. Also of concern were use of the death penalty "and particularly cruel forms of execution such as stoning".
Honourable Mr. Chris Patten, European Union (EU) Commissioner for External
Honourable Mr. Javier Solana, EU High Representative for Common Foreign and
Now that the European Union is scheduled to start dialogue with the officials of the Islamic Republic of Iran in December, allow me to draw your attention to these points:
1- It is an honour and pleasure for me and every patriotic and freedom-eager Iranian that the EU is determined to bond dialogue with Iran on economic and commercial matters with dialogue on human rights and fight against terrorism, and prevent economic interests to become the basis for overlooking the systematic violation of democratic freedom and human rights in Iran.
2- More than 10 millions Kurds live in Iran that more than 7 millions of them live on the soil of their ancestors, the Iranian Kurdistan. The Kurds of Iran are deprived from all of their national rights; for instance, the right of studying in Kurdish, governing the Kurdish region via their elected representatives, and having a just and equal representation in central government are among a few. The legitimate struggle of this nation to attain its rights equal to other citizens has always been branded as separatism by the Iranian officials and suppressed ferociously. Currently, a large number of Kurds are in the prisons of the Islamic Republic of Iran guilty of their persistence for the legitimate rights of their nation, some faced with execution verdicts that just only in the last two months, several of them were carried out.
3- Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan that struggles for more than 57 years for the attainment of the legitimate rights of the Kurdish nation in Iranian Kurdistan, to achieve its principal objective “Democracy for Iran, autonomy for Kurdistan” has always supported peaceful solutions; in general, this Party has rejected any forms of extremism to resolve internal, regional and international disputes.
Hence, on behalf of PDKI and all the people of this part of Kurdistan, I call upon you that in dialogue with the Islamic Republic officials do not disregard the important aspect of human rights that is related to the fate of millions of Iranians. We ask you to pressure the Iranian officials for the recognition of national rights of Kurdish people and other nationalities of Iran (Azeris, Baluchis, Turkmand, Arabs and etc…) to accomplish your holy mission as envoys of democracy and defender of justice and human rights.
No doubts that resolving nationalistic demands in Iran and else-where can assist world peace stability, and eradicate terrorism as contemporary daunting world predicaments. It is clear that many terrorist activities are conducted against human beings either to contain the oppressed nations or in the name of defending the oppressed people.
I will remind you that the subjugated people of Iran especially the Kurdish population view the results of EU dialogue with the Islamic Republic of Iran with hope and optimism; I wish that you do not disappoint these people eager for peace and freedom.
Most respectfully yours,
Secretary-general of democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan
Honourable leadership of the German Socialist Party,
In the recent parliamentary elections, the Social Democrats emerged as the victorious party and the voters put their faith in the Party once again to renew its mandate for another term in power. On behalf of PDKI, on this occasion, I congratulate you, and I hope that Germany led by Chancellor “Gerhard Schroder” will strive further for global peace and freedom, and also for the rights of oppressed people, among them Kurds.
Secretary-general of PDKI
Abdullah Hassanzadeh, PDKI Secretary-general
Thanks for your admiring message on the results of German parliamentary elections. The new government continues its successful reform programs; internationally, we declare our duties for establishing and preserving political and social stability world wide. We continue our struggle for peace assignments against terrorism.
SPD will strive continuously in the future for the attainment of the full and equal rights of all Kurds politically, economically and culturally in the countries concerned.
The responsibilities are cumbersome; no country or organization can implement them alone. We count on the solidarity and cooperation of many close friends.
Responsible for International Relations
The honourable leadership of the Green Party of Germany,
Your Party obtained a considerable success in the parliamentary elections. In this regard, on behalf of PDKI, I congratulate you and wish you further success.
We hope your empowered Party endeavour further for freedom and peace and the legitimate rights of Kurdish nation in the future.
With sincere regards,
Secretary-general of PDKI
Dear Abdullah Hassanzadeh,
On behalf of Claudia Roth, I thank you for your congratulatory message for the successful results of German parliamentary elections.
We were able to reach our main objectives in the latest parliamentary election and obtain more than 8 percent of the popular vote. We are the third German political party, and we try to pursue the policies of modernizing our country by establishing ties with other parties.
We will struggle to obtain the programs of the Green Party in the next four years, and maintain the government of red and green.
The office of Ms. Claudia Roth
The SIMEC Working Group on the Kurdish Question held a meeting in the context of a seminar organised by the Olof Palme Foundation on "National Minorities, Regional Self Government and Democracy in Iraq, Iran and Turkey", on 26-27 August 2002 in Sweden. At the meeting, representatives of the SAP (Sweden), SPÖ (Austria), SPD (Germany), PS (France) as well as the KDP (Iran), HADEP (Turkey), PUK (Iraq), KDP (Iraq) and Komala (Iran) were present, also invited was the CHP (Turkey).
The SIMEC Working Group took note of the further improved cooperation between the KDP and PUK in Iraqi Kurdistan, and supported the demands of the Kurdish people in Iraq to achieve a United Democratic Federal Iraq. Condemning repression, ethnic cleansing and all kinds of terrorism, such as Ansar al-Islam in Iraq, as well as in the whole Middle East region, the SIMEC Working Group further expressed its support for the Iraqi people in its wish for change.
On the basis of the relevant UN Resolutions, the community of states should work together to support the aspiration towards a democratic and federal Iraq, respecting human rights and the rule of law. At the same time the SIMEC Working Group stressed that building a future Iraq should be the responsibility of the different components of the Iraqi people and avoid any kind of regional interference.
The SIMEC Working Group urged European Governments and political parties especially to contribute responsibly to finding solutions to the Iraqi issues and the other burning conflicts in the Middle East.
The SIMEC Working Group took note with satisfaction of the recent reform legislation in Turkey and considered it an important step in strengthening relations between EU and Turkey. It encouraged Turkey to continue in this way, especially in implementing and applying this new legislation, guaranteeing fair elections in November, and in supplementing the reform legislation by a general amnesty for Kurdish and human rights activists to allow them to take part constructively in the political process. The SIMEC Working Group further welcomed the decision to recommend HADEP be admitted as a new member in the SI family.
The SIMEC Working Group took note of developments in Iran, and encouraged all forces in favour of democracy and human rights to continue the way of change and reform. In this context it underlined the necessity of finding a solution to the Iranian-Kurdish issue, which respects these values. The SIMEC Working Group appreciates the realistic standpoints taken by the KDP in Iran on this matter.
By Guy Dinmore in Tehran - Published: Financial Times, November 20 2002
It is a sign of how nervous the Iranian authorities are becoming after a dozen days of student protests, that a small gaggle of middle-aged monarchists in central Tehran can trigger a full-scale police alert. Scores of police, some in riot gear, encircled Revolution Square late on Tuesday, moving pedestrians on and even using a vacated bank premises as a temporary lock-up.
But so far they are the only ones answering the rather plaintive and ineffectual appeals by opposition satellite television stations, based in the US, for the Iranian people to take to the streets against their Islamic regime. Nonetheless, while the Iranian people are watching from the sidelines, it is becoming evident that campus rallies across the country are entering a new and more radical stage. The outcome, politicians warn, could be dangerous.
Pressure from hardliners on the students to give up their protests is being brought to bear from all sides, but it has only encouraged a radical few. The hardline judiciary, which triggered the protests by sentencing to death an outspoken academic for apostasy, has ordered local journalists not to give detailed reports on the campus demos.
Mustafa Moin, minister for higher education, has bowed to the conservatives and urged the students to relent. IRIB, the state broadcaster also controlled by hardliners, has its own spin, reporting on "illegal gatherings" by "so-called students".
These vented their anger at Modarres University, where the condemned academic, Hashemi Aghajari, used to teach, by setting upon an IRIB cameraman, ripping open his tape and sending the contents flying like a streamer. But more serious pressure is coming from increasing acts of violence against students by the Basij, an Islamist militia, and the shadowy hardmen of Ansar-e-Hezbollah who ride unchallenged on motorbikes without licence plates. Students at Tehran's Allameh Tabatabayi University on Wednesday abandoned a planned rally when they found extremists waiting for them. This week, hardliners have attacked and broken up rallies in several cities, including Tehran, Ahwaz and Yassuj. Several students have landed in hospital. A pro-reform MP was also assaulted.
Police forces, which have stayed mainly neutral, are showing less interest in protecting students, turning a blind eye when thugs set upon demonstrators returning home from their campuses. About 1,500 students affiliated to the Basij held their own counter-rally in Tehran University on Tuesday in support of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader who has come under fire from the reformist students.
The Basiji students did not impress with their numbers, bused in from different colleges, but the message was blunt, a language of religious commitment, of threats, and warnings of collusion by foreign enemies. "Martyrdom is our honour," bearded men chanted from the right, echoed by ranks of women wrapped in black chadors, segregated to the left. If the relevant ministers or university chancellors did not restore campus order, their statement said, then the Basijis would. "Our red line is the Leadership," proclaimed Mohammad Sarshar from the podium, referring to Ayatollah Khamenei. "The world should know that breaking these lines will cost a huge price."
Conservatives are frustrated that pro-reform rallies have continued, despite the supreme leaders attempt to restore calm by ordering the judiciary to review Mr Aghajaris sentence. But at the same time as the Basijis were gathering, reformists at Modarres University were taking up even more radical chants, criticising the supreme leader, but also Mohammad Khatami, the moderate president whose public silence has angered once faithful supporters.
"Khatamis silence is treason for the nation," some shouted. Mr Khatami has been unable to capitalise on the student movement, to push through his own stalled agenda of political reforms, out of fear that hardliners would stage a repeat of their bloody crackdown on student protests in 1999, which led to widespread rioting.
The sense of looming confrontation is seen in changing dress-codes. Some of the young men and women have donned rebellious-looking headbands and mask their faces. In a way, it is a piece of theatre and they know that their numbers are relatively small 5,000 or so at the biggest rally to date but the radical intent is there.
Abdullah Momeni, a member of the central council of the Office to Foster Unity (OFU), the main student union, is concerned that events are moving out of control. "I think if the pressures continue like this, then student actions will get more radical and will not follow a logical path anymore," he told the FT. "They are creating an intimidating atmosphere to push the student movement back to its passivity. These sort of things will not be useful for them. Yesterday at Modarres you saw that despite all the restrictions, students jumped over the fences to get in and the slogans were more radical than before." The weakness of the OFU, which has not recovered from the arrest of its leaders and the 1999 summer of repression, has led to a lack of coordination and clarity in the protests. The OFU demands Mr Aghajaris unconditional release from prison, but other students insist all political prisoners be freed and have extended the agenda to political reform in general.
At the same time, the lack of central leadership has given the movement more vitality, especially in the provinces. Mohammad-Reza Khatami, brother of the president and leader of the largest parliamentary party, has also warned conservatives that students are losing hope in "the system", coded language meaning the debate is shifting away from religious dictatorship versus religious democracy, to one of theocracy versus secularism.
Nonetheless, the clerics in control are signalling that a crackdown is in the making. National Basij week kicks off with a march on Saturday outside the former US embassy. Martyrdom in the defence of Islam is their motto.
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