23 August 20212
The United States, President, Joe Biden
The United Nations, Secretary-General, António Guterres
The Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran, Javaid Rehman
Do not allow Ebrahim Raisi to enter the US, he must be arrested and tried for committing crimes against humanity!
The 77th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 77) will open on Tuesday, 13 September 2022. Ebrahim Raisi, the current president of the Islamic regime in Iran, has also stated he will attend the assembly. Raisi has ordered murdering thousands of opposition members to a scale that amounts to a crime against humanity. To allow this murderer to attend the UNGA is outrageous. We strongly urge the UN secretary-general, António Guterres, and also the US president Joe Biden and his administration, to use all their powers to disallow the president of the Islamic regime in Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, from entering the US and from attending the UN assembly.
Ebrahim Raisi is a mass murderer. We would like to specifically draw your attention to some of the examples of the crimes committed by Ebrahim Raisi and his regime, and urge the UN and the US administration to take steps to investigate his crimes.
The following examples, and related documents, are only a few examples of crimes against humanity committed by Raisi:
· Ebrahim Raisi has been committing crimes against humanity since 1981. Before being announced as a so-called president, Raisi has been in charge of various positions in the judiciary system since 1981, and he is responsible for arresting, torturing, and executing thousands of dissidents over the past four decades.
· In the summer of 1988 Ebrahim Raisi was Tehran’s deputy prosecutor and member of the “death committee”, when more than 5000 political prisoners were executed in only 3-4 weeks and then their bodies were dumped in mass graves, never to be found. After 33 years, many families still do not know where their loved ones are buried. Some families have been arrested and tortured only because they are demanding to know the truth about why their loved ones were executed in 1988.
· On 14th July 2022, Hamid Nouri, one of the perpetrators of the massacre of 1988, who at the time was receiving his orders from Ebrahim Raisi, was convicted in Sweden. Hamid Nouri was arrested when he entered Sweden and put on trial in Sweden. He was then convicted of murder and war crimes for his part in the massacre of political prisoners in 1988 and was sentenced to life in prison. Following Nouri’s sentence, Amnesty International called on all states to exercise Universal Jurisdiction to investigate all other former and current officials of the Islamic regime in Iran, including Ebrahim Raisi. The question is, if Nouri, who was collaborating with Raisi, has rightly been sentenced to life in prison in Sweden, then why Ebrahim Raisi, who was one of the main perpetrators of, and ordered the executions of thousands, could be allowed to enter the US freely and attend the UN general assembly?
· Under Raisi’s power, the Iranian journalist, Rouhollah Zam, who lived in France, was kidnapped by the agents of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), when he visited Iraq. He was then taken to Iran and imprisoned, tortured, and hanged in December 2020. Similarly, tens of dual nationals have been arrested, while traveling to Iran, kidnaped from Iran’s neighbouring countries, taken to Iran and tortured, and given jail sentences based on fabricated charges. Raisi’s regime has carried out plots to kidnap and assassinate Iranian-American journalists, such as Masih Alinejat in the US in 2021 and 2022. The attack on the renowned author Salman Rushdie on 12th August 2022, was carried out by the order of the Islamic regime. The founder of the regime, Khomeini, issued the original fatwa, and Ali Khamenei, the current leader, called for the murder of Rushdie as an Islamic duty. Raisi is the president of such a regime which ordered Fatwa against Rushdie. There are several US citizens including Mr Jamshid Sharmad, who was kidnaped by IRGC and is now in prison, tortured, and held as a hostage. Mr Sharmad is in danger of being executed at any time. Raisi and his regime refuse to release jailed American-Iranian, and other dual citizens. Allowing Raisi to enter the US would be a slap in the face of jailed American-Iranians and their families.
· Under Raisi’s power, as the head of the Judiciary, the Islamic regime carried out the crackdown on the protesters in November 2019, when 1500 people were shot by the security forces, and more than 8000 were arrested, tortured, and given lengthy jail sentences. Many are still in prison. Tens of protesters, including the Iranian wrestling Champion Navid Afkari, were executed for expressing their opposition to the crimes committed by the leaders of the Islamic regime. Raisi issued the arrest warrant, imprisonment, and death sentences for these protesters.
· Raisi, as a member of the Supreme National Security Council of the Islamic regime, has been instrumental in intentionally shooting down Ukrainian flight PS752 on 8th January 2020 which resulted in the killing of all 176 passengers on board.
· Hundreds of activists and their families have been harassed by the regime’s security forces, arrested, tortured, and have been given flogging or lengthy prison sentences as well as being issued death sentences. Tens of women’s rights defenders, who opposed the Hijab, teachers, and workers, who protested for their rights, have been detained and tortured.
In August 2021, a letter was signed and sent to the UNHRC by more than 700 families of political prisoners, who were seeking justice, for the jailed rights activists in Iran and around the world to be freed immediately and unconditionally. In their letter, the signatories have exposed various crimes against humanity committed by Ebrahim Raisi and the IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) and they urged the UNHRC to “take effective and practical steps to establish an independent commission to investigate and gather evidence on international and domestic crimes committed by the Islamic regime in Iran.”
Ebrahim Raisi, must not be allowed to enter the United States. Allowing Raisi to enter the US and to attend the UN General Assembly could only show that crimes against humanity do not matter to the US administration and the UN and its secretary General. Allowing Raisi to attend the UN Assembly will further prove that the US and the UN have deliberately closed their eyes to the crimes against humanity committed by Raisi and his regime against people in Iran, as well as against American citizens.
We strongly urge the US government and the UN not to issue a visa for Raisi, instead to use their power to take specific steps and actions to investigate the crime against humanity committed by Ebrahim Raisi.
Campaign to Free the Political Prisoners in Iran (CFPPI)
International Committee Against Execution (ICAE)
Campaign to Free Jailed Workers in Iran (Free Them Now)