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London conference calls for the arrest of Ebrahim Raisi

NCRI conference in London calls for the arrest of Iranian regime president Ebrahim Raisi
NCRI conference in London calls for the arrest of Iranian regime president Ebrahim Raisi

Reporting by PMOI/MEK

Iran, October 14, 2021—Iranian regime president Ebrahim Raisi must be arrested and prosecuted for crimes against humanity and genocide, speakers at a conference held by the office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) in London said on Wednesday.

The conference was held shortly after the spokesperson for the regime’s foreign ministry declared that Raisi would not be traveling to Glasgow, Scotland, to attend the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) scheduled for early November. In the past weeks, Iranians expats have held rallies in several cities across the world and called for Raisi to be held to account for his decades-long human rights abuses, especially against dissidents and members of the Iranian opposition.

Raisi was a key member of the “death commission,” a group of regime officials who sent more than 30,000 political prisoners to the gallows in the summer of 1988. Raisi has also served in key posts in the regime’s judicial system, including the head of judiciary from 2019 until he was appointed as president in 2021. Under his watch, many people have been executed, tortured, and murdered in prison.

“Raisi has long been despised by the people of Iran, and he is known as the butcher of Tehran and the 1988 massacre,” Hossein Abedini, the deputy chief of NCRI’s UK office said in his opening remarks at the conference. “Now there is growing international condemnation and denunciation of Raisi and the squad of criminals and terrorists who have come to power in his cabinet. That denunciation has to be translated into action and Raisi should be banned from traveling abroad and governments should spring to action through legal means if he sets foot in their territory.”

 

 

The next speaker was former MEP from Scotland Struan Stevenson, who has filed an official complaint with Scottish authorities and demanded the arrest of Raisi if travels to Scotland for COP26.

“We will hunt this man in any country of the world that he dares to set foot in,” Stevenson said. “There can be no impunity for crimes against humanity of this magnitude.”

Stevenson reiterated Raisi’s role in the 1988 massacre of political prisoners and the atrocities committed by the regime at the time, including the group hangings of prisoners and forcing prisoners to watch others get hanged before being executed themselves. Stevenson also reminded that Raisi has personally ordered the execution of 15-year-old girls and pregnant women, and during his stint as the chief of the judiciary, he has presided over hundreds of executions.

“We cannot allow such as person to have any form of impunity,” Stevenson said. “Our intention is that the investigation we asked for… will then be handed to the public prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.”

 

 

Also speaking at the conference was Tahar Boumedra, former Chief of the UN Human Rights Office in Iraq and chairman of Justice for the Victims of the 1988 Massacre in Iran (JVMI), a foundation that has documented the 1988 massacre and is seeking an international investigation into this crime against humanity. Boumedra was also party to the complaint filed against Raisi.

“We believe that justice delayed is justice denied,” Boumedra said. “Enough waiting for the perpetrators of crimes against humanity, crimes of genocide, of torture, and crimes of disappearances… Crimes against humanity, genocide, and crimes of war, are imprescriptible. No matter how long it takes, the perpetrators remain wanted by justice, and this is the case of Ebrahim Raisi as well as other suspects.”

 

 

Raisi’s presidency has been complicated by his past crimes. In September, Raisi cancelled his trip to New York for the annual UN General Assembly. While the regime did not provide an official explanation, state-run media speculated that the regime was afraid that if Raisi would make the trip, “Iranians living abroad or some organizations and institutions might want to take actions against him.”