We publish an excerpt from Massoumeh Raouf’s book “Evasion of the prison of Iran”, published by Balland. It tells how this woman escaped from prison to escape an increasingly tyrannical republic. How her loved ones died in retaliation and her struggle for those who were murdered not to be forgotten, but to be brought to light.
“In December 2018 on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the great massacre of political prisoners in 1988 in Iran, of which my younger brother is a victim, I published my first book in French.
A comic, entitled “A little prince in the land of the mullahs” with a preface by Ingrid Betancourt which tells the story of my brother Ahmad. It was released in French, English, German, Italian, Norwegian and Persian.
After the publication of my book, friends I met on several occasions at the book fair asked me to tell my story and my memories of prison. So during my first confinement, I started writing and finishing this book. Frankly, I’m writing this book for French or foreign readers who hear the name Iran in the news but don’t know what’s really going on in Iran.
In fact, I had already written my memories in Persian when I left Iran.
they were published in the Book of Chained Heroes. But writing this book was not easy for me. After all, French is not my mother tongue. Writing for an Iranian reader who has a common culture and history is very different. I had to adapt to the French culture and reader. Eventually I signed a contract with Édition Balland and the book is available in bookstores in France, Belgium and Switzerland.
I regard my new book – Escape from Iran Prison – as the second volume of my book “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs”, although it is not a comic. Through my history and experience, I want to draw attention to the 1988 crime against humanity that went unpunished and also to the current situation in Iran.
What’s happening is scary.
I was arrested in September 1981 and sentenced to 20 years in 10 minutes in a sham trial. But after eight months I managed to escape. The revenge of the regime was terrible. The execution of the incarcerated girls, my cellmate, the arrest of my mother and the torture of my 16-year-old brother.
Finally, my brother was executed in 1988 along with 30,000 other prisoners of the Mojahedin of the people of Iran by order and fatwa of Khomeini.
In 1991, the regime’s secret service agents brought some of my brother’s clothes and told my father that they had executed him in Orumieh Prison in northwestern Iran, but they didn’t, they didn’t say where he was buried.
Even today, after 33 years, we – the families of the victims – do not know where Ahmad and all the others were buried, but their executioners are still there.
From 1996 to 2001 I did research on the families of the victims of this massacre and on the situation of prisons in Iran. I was thus able to participate in the publication of two collective works: “Massacre of political prisoners” And “Chained heroes“in Persian (Farsi). These years of research have also allowed me to collect documents and information on the fate of my brother and this has allowed me to write his story.
More than a comic, – A little prince in the land of the Mullahs – it tells the life of my brother, who was a hero of resistance to the religious dictatorships in power in Iran.
This book is both a tribute to my brother Ahmad, killed at the age of 24 during the Great Massacre in Iran in 1988, a historical testimony of the genocide that went unpunished and also a call for justice.
My new book is a testimony that honors the memory of young Iranian revolutionaries. I belong to this generation of revolutions stolen by the mullahs in power in Iran.
In my Books, I tell a small part of the suffering of a chained people who still fight for their freedom. A few days ago, I received an annual report on human rights violations in Iran in 2021 of over 400 pages. 361 executions in 2021 and this is hushed up by the whole world.
But despite all the repressions, Iranian society is increasingly mobilizing against the mullahs in power and the end of this regime is approaching. The activities of the “resistance units” inside Iran are becoming stronger and more spectacular on a national level every day. It shows that fear has changed sides.
For more than four decades, Iran has suffered. The source of these pains is fundamentalism and religious tyranny. The massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988 remains one of the most shocking events in the history of the Islamic Republic. This dark period in the contemporary history of Iran has remained unknown to Western public opinion due to the pacification policy pursued by Western countries towards the mullahs’ regime, and also to the complicit silence of the United Nations.
Over the past thirty years, thousands of pages of documents on this crime against humanity have been collected and published. Among these documents, the investigation by Amnesty International published in 2018, the investigation of Geoffrey Robertson, a well-known human rights lawyer and former United Nations judge, two investigative books by Tahar Boumedra, former head of the Human Rights Office of the United Nations in Iraq, the book Crime Against Humanity published by the PMOI in English and now in French. This book contains the names of over 5,000 executed people’s Mujahideen, details of 35 death commissions and the location of mass graves in 36 cities.
Ebrahim Raïssi, the new president of the regime, is an ultra-conservative that Amnesty International wants to try for crimes against humanity.
Raisi was a member of the “death commission” and one of the main perpetrators.
On Thursday 27 January, hundreds of signatories, including Nobel laureates, urged the UN Human Rights Council in an open letter to launch an international investigation into the 1988 massacre of thousands of political prisoners in Iran. You can join them.
Now it is up to the United Nations to play its role! As Amnesty International points out:“The UN and the international community have seriously failed in their duty to families and victims” e [elle] it must carry out an independent investigation into these crimes against humanity“.
In this regard, I ask all of you to help us. We have come a long way so far. But we need your help and support to bring these executioners to justice. “