Posted by: bahareiran | January 8, 2011

SILENCE NO LONGER ACCEPTABLE IN THE FACE OF ESCALATING AGGRESSION AGAINST ASHRAF

In reaction to the attacks on residents of Camp Ashraf on Friday 7 January 2011, Struan Stevenson MEP, President of the Friends of a Free Iran Intergroup in the European Parliament stated:
 
“The most recent attack on the refugees in Camp Ashraf by a stone and bottle-throwing mob, organised, motivated, financed and inspired by the evil Fascist regime in Tehran and endorsed by their lickspittle cohorts in Baghdad, has marked a new chapter in the dark history of human rights abuse in the Middle East. The attack, un-challenged by the Iraqi security forces, escalated into an onslaught of hurled petrol bombs leaving hundreds of innocent people injured.
 
“The West, meanwhile, stands idly by, wringing its hands in mock horror, just as they did when, on 29th July 2009, a similar vicious attack, again at the behest of the Iranian regime, led to the deaths of 11 unarmed civilian refugees in Ashraf and the serious injury and illegal imprisonment of many others.
 
“The EU must stand up and be counted. We make great speeches in the European Parliament attacking those who abuse human rights and giving grand rewards to those who defend freedom and democracy at their personal cost. But when it comes to taking action on issues like Ashraf we fail to deliver.
 
“That is why the 3400 refugees in Camp Ashraf, many of them women, have been terrorised for the past two years, subjected to physical and mental abuse, denied access to medical care and allowed to die of treatable illnesses. That is why we have watched as day and night, these innocent refugees have suffered the psychological torture of 180 loudspeakers erected around the camp’s perimeter fence, blaring endless propaganda and abuse at a decibel level designed to drive people insane.
 
“An overwhelming majority of MEPs have twice now declared their support for the residents of Ashraf and demanded an end to their repression and abuse and recognition of their rights as protected persons under the Fourth Geneva Convention. But our demands have been simply answered by an escalation of orchestrated violence against the innocent residents of the camp, many of whom have lived peacefully there in Northern Iraq for more than a quarter century.
 
“Of course the motivation behind the attacks is clear. The unarmed residents of Camp Ashraf are openly opposed to the vile Iranian tyranny. They represent the frontline of resistance to that despotic and corrupt regime and as such, are easy targets for a vicious Iranian government determined to bend its compliant Iraqi neighbours to its will.
 
“We are witnessing the opening salvo in an unequal struggle which will certainly lead, inexorably, to a massacre, as the heavily armed and well paid agents of Tehran continue to assault Camp Ashraf without challenge. Those of us who value human rights; who value freedom and democracy and who value the ultimate victory of good over evil must now let our voices be heard.
 
“We cannot tolerate this abuse any longer. The European Parliament expressed its will by a massive majority last month in support of Camp Ashraf. It is now up to Baroness Ashton as EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs to take action. She must speak out, otherwise her silence will be seen as an act of weakness by the EU and all of us will be tarnished by any further bloodshed that we fail to prevent and we will forever hang our heads in shame.
 
“Speak out now, Baroness Ashton. Condemn those who attack the Ashraf refugees. Demand action from the US military who guaranteed the safety of every Ashraf resident and then walked away. Tell the Iraqi government that they will be judged on their conduct towards the innocent refugees in Ashraf and warn Iran that their evil meddling in the affairs of their neighbours in the Middle East will hasten their ultimate downfall. Silence is not golden…it is reprehensible!”

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