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Wed, August 26, 2015 Saudis Capture Terrorist Who Killed 19 Americans in 1996

The aftermath of the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing.

The aftermath of the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing.

Saudi Arabia has captured the mastermind behind the 1996 Khobar Towers bombings. Ahmed Ibrahim al-Mughassil, aged 48, the leader the military wing of Hezbollah al-Hejaz, was captured in Beirut, Lebanon. He has been transferred to Saudi Arabia where he will be imprisoned.

The Khobar Towers bombing target a US military compound within Saudi Arabia killed 19 U.S. servicemen and wounded 372. The FBI placed al-Mughassil on the original list of most-wanted terrorists in 2001 and indicted him for the bombing in absentia along with several others.

In 2006 the U.S. found Iran responsible to the bombing, which had been personally approved by Ayatollah Khamenei.

Iran was ordered to pay a $254 million fine to the families of the victims. 

A Dissident Ayatollah Speaks From an Iranian Jail

Ayatollah Boroujerdi before his imprisonment and in his cell.

Ayatollah Boroujerdi before his imprisonment and in his cell.

by: 
Ayatollah Seyed Hossein Kazemeini Boroujerdi

Editor's note: The following is a letter written from prison from Ayatollah Hossein-Kazamani Boroujerdi, who was a senior (Shiite) member of the clergy in Iran.

Boroujerdi is currently in the ninth year of an 11-year sentence for advocating for the "radical" position of separation of state and religion in Iran as well as speaking against Islamism and the country's leaders.

He has been held in solitary confinement, malnurished, tortured, beaten and exposed to chemical agents. His wife has been raped in fron of other family members. He now suffers permanent neurological damage and medical help has been denied to him.

The following is his letter written to his attorney's:  

 

To the Attention of my Dear Representatives and Wonderful Attorneys

With greetings and respect and wishes of increasing success,

 

As you are aware, I have been at the service of religion, minus politics, since twenty years now, at the beginning of which, due to my independent religious thoughts and opinions, I was imprisoned at the secret prison of Towhid, which is located next to the central post office, and was tortured with hideous devices, destined for a physical and mental breakdown; and fourteen years before that, following a non-political monotheistic publication, I was also imprisoned for a few months in ward 209 of the Ministry of Intelligence, and was subjected to harassment and persecution. Also, during these nine years, as a defender of human rights, I have experienced all kinds of torment to the point that I have lost all of my health, and have no hope to continue my life – my legs are becoming paralyzed, my eyes are becoming blind, my lungs are in danger of failing, my heart is on a path to a heart attack, and my brain is bringing me closer to death. Nine years - every second of which has been accompanied by a mountain of excruciating pressures.

It is a pity that despite my fame and my out-spread insights and diversity of thought, no doctor from international institutions, or an attorney from legal and judicial organizations have yet came to visit me.  I sometimes think that if in my place, an animal was subjected to the brutality of the Islamic regime in Iran, the animal protection organizations would have cried out a thousand times.  But alas! Defending a religious leader who does not wish to sell himself to the rulers of the brutal regime in Iran is ignored and no effective and appropriate action is taken for him.

Since two decades my family have been distressed and upset – my children are deprived from continuing their education and suffer from lack of livelihood. Ten years ago, before the aggression of the rulers of the regime started against me, I had a unique private library that contained antique books and rare to find manuscripts, which during those days were evaluated to be worth ten billion toomans; and one of the directors of the Astan Quds Razavi (charitable foundation in Mashhad) had announced his interest in buying them and had started negotiations in view of transferring them to the relative library, which coincided with the regime’s reaction and as a result was plundered by the security forces.

 Now that the subject of the human rights in our country has turned into a new and serious chapter for the United Nations, and has become the first subject of interest for the Security Council observers after the end of nuclear negotiations, please follow up on my pending case in an open and suitable manner, and please do not delay, as my slogans are directed towards saving the Middle East, and my divine insight for reviewing the basis or the infrastructure of the Quran, which will be a means of putting a damper on the terrorist actions of extremist Islamists.  This oppressed, alienated and helpless prisoner is expecting credit, economic and media assistance from all protectors of Justice and the heralds and preachers of peace and those advocating freedom of speech and expression.

 This humble servant of religion and humanity shakes the hands of all my supporters, friends and companions and those in agreement with my humanitarian line of thought, and in this regard I bow and prostrate in front of them. I hope that the vital issue of freedom, in all its aspects, will be brought to the attention of Iranians residing abroad, and our nostalgic compatriots may understand my daily life, and will not forget this victim of political Islam, and in turn will become the echo of my cries.

 

Seyed Hossein Kazemeini Boroujerdi

August 2015

Iran- Tehran- Evin Prison

 

Clarion has interviewed Taybeh Hosseini, President of the Boroujerdi Civil Rights Group, who graciously allowed us to publish the letter. Read the interview here to learn more about this organization and its work. 

Tue, August 18, 2015 Leading Iranian Dissidents Slam Nuclear Deal

A guard in Iran's notorious Evin prison, where many political prisoners are kept. (Photo: © Reuters)

A guard in Iran's notorious Evin prison, where many political prisoners are kept. (Photo: © Reuters)

An open letter condemning the Iranian nuclear deal has been signed by 52 leading Iranian dissidents. The letter, published in The Daily Beast, condemns the Islamic Republic of Iran’s atrocious human rights record and argues that the Iranian people are those who will suffer the most from a deal which will “enrich a repressive regime.”

The activists, many of whom have suffered personally at the hands of the regime, write, “We have spent our lives advocating for peace, justice and freedom in Iran. We represent a diverse array of Iranians who hope to warn the world of the danger of this regime regardless of how many centrifuges spin in Iran.”

Among the signatories to the letter are filmmaker Sheema Kalbasi and cyber-dissident and activist Nima Rashedan, both of whom have been interviewed by Clarion Project in the past on their experiences with Iranian human-rights abuses.

Sheema Kalbasi told Clarion "A regime that cannot be trusted to respect the rights of its citizens cannot be trusted to respect the terms of this nuclear agreement."

The signatories objections' to the deal stem from the support and legitimacy it gives to the Iranian government rather than specifically the nuclear element.

In particular they decry the fact “this deal will provide up to $150 billion windfall of cash into the bank account of our tyrants and theocrats. This money will not be spent on the Iranian people but rather to enrich a repressive regime.”

Rather than welcoming rapprochement, they accuse Western supporters of the deal of being “apologists and appeasers of Iranian theocracy” who “distance the likelihood of positive change and undercut the hopes of the Iranian people.”

The deal is extremely unlikely to result in the Iranian regime changing its stance on human rights or opening up its society, except to businesses. Senior figures such as the commander of Iran’s armed forces have rejected out of hand ever being on good terms with the United States.

Since Hassan Rouhani, widely touted as a moderate, became president of Iran, executions have skyrocketed. From his election in June 2013 until December 2014 there were at least 1193 executions, or an average of two per day.   This is considerably more than the 827 executed over the previous 18-month period.

The ire of the letter's signatories is not the United States or the people of Iran. Rather, it is the theocratic government that now rules Iran. 

Optimistic that eventually this tyranny will fall, they write, "One day when the Iranian people are finally free, they will hold an accounting of who stood on their side and who stood on the regime's. It is not too late to hold the Iranian regime accountable for their continued human rights violations.

For more information on the Iran regime's human rights abuses, see Clarion Project's Factsheet: Human Rights in Iran 

Debts of the Ayatollah: Iran Gets Money That Should Be Used to Pay Its Terror Victims.

Submitted by Emily on Mon, 2015-08-17 08:10

URL: 
http://www.wsj.com/articles/debts-of-the-ayatollah-1439507940
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Iran Supreme Leader Says Fate of Nuclear Deal Still Unclear

Submitted by Emily on Mon, 2015-08-17 08:08

URL: 
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/08/17/world/middleeast/ap-ml-iran-nuclear.html?_r=0
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Iran Refuses to Free Student Activist Bahareh Hedayat After Six Yearsi Jail

Submitted by Emily on Thu, 2015-08-13 04:24

URL: 
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/aug/12/iran-refuses-free-student-activist-bahareh-hedayat-six-years-prison
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How Obama’s Deal Would Make the West Complicit in Funding Terrorism

Submitted by Emily on Thu, 2015-08-13 04:23

URL: 
https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2015/08/11/how-obamas-deal-would-make-the-west-complicit-in-funding-terrorism/
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Wed, August 12, 2015 Ayatollahs Star in Pinocchio Farce

Screenshot from the Disney film version of Pinocchio.

Screenshot from the Disney film version of Pinocchio.

Iranian censors have shuttered a production of Pinocchio in Tehran as they deemed the attire of one of the female actors to be immodest.

The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance Theatre Supervision Committee deemed the wig and costume to be in violation of modesty regulations. Additionally, they found the script of the play inappropriate.

Pinocchio, by Iranian producer Shahra Sultani, was closed on Monday, three days after it opened.

The Iranian pro-regime media agency Fars reported this is the second play to be closed permanently in the last few months. The censors also closed the play Autumn, by Nadir Barhani Murnad.

Department of Plays in the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance Manager Mahdi Shafe’i said “the performance of the play Pinocchio will cease until there are alterations in the script, the clothes, makeup and the way the actresses look.”

The censorship committees imposes harsh restrictions on female actors. They do not allow them to do anything out of the ordinary. On very rare occasions slight deviation is allowed, but only when it serves the spreading of the principles of the Iranian revolution.    

For more information about censorship and modesty laws in the Islamic Republic of Iran, see Clarion Project’s Factsheet: Human Rights in Iran

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