Put Maliki on trial for Camp Ashraf massacre of Iranian PMOI (MEK) members, British human rights lawyer demands
- Published on Sunday, 17 August 2014 17:58
NCRI - The Iraqi authorities involved in the massacre of Iranian opposition members in Camp Ashraf must be put on trial, a leading British human rights lawyer has demanded.
Sara Chandler, chairwoman of the UK law society human rights committee, also questioned whether the international community should tolerate the Iraqi authorities providing protection for the remaining refugees now resident at Camp Liberty, near Baghdad airport.
Iraqi forces under the command of Nouri al-Maliki massacre of 52 members of Iranian opposition, the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) in Camp Ashraf on September 1 last year. Seven residents of the camp were abducted including six women.
Ms Chandler said in a speech at conference held at the United Nations HQ in Geneva on August 13: "Sadly as we all know we are also approaching the anniversary of the brutal massacre of the residents in Camp Ashraf on the 1st of September 2013, a shameful attack which demonstrated the failure of the international community to protect the residents.
"One year has passed and not even one person has been caught or put on trial for the savage attack occurred in Camp Ashraf.
"Let us look at the evidence. Camp Ashraf was heavily surrounded by Iraqi forces. So, it is absolutely impossible for unknown assassins to pass all the check points to enter the camp and massacre 52 people without the knowledge of the Iraqi government and that is not saying what happened also to the seven kidnapped refugees.
"The international community has left it to the Iraqi government to investigate and bring to justice the perpetrators of this crime.
"Did we really expect Mr. Maliki to investigate this crime? If we did, what do we say now what had happened?
"The Iraqi authorities at the time are the ones who should be put on trial for this crime and certainly not the ones who should carry out the investigation."
The international community had repeatedly failed to prevent attacks on both Ashraf and Liberty, and should now honour its commitments to provide protection, she said.
Ms Chandler added: "I call on United Nations Secretary-General, the high commissioner for the human rights, and the UN special rapporteurs to pursue this matter and insist on bringing the perpetrators to justice.
"This is necessary not only for Ashraf but also for preventing similar crimes from happening by other corrupt regimes in other parts of the world.
"We have one way to prevent it and that is to make sure that the September 1st 2013 massacre is thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators are brought to justice."
The conference in which Mrs Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian Resistance was keynote speaker, was chaired by Ms. Anne-Marie Lizin, Honorary President of the Belgian Senate.
Other speakers included: Professor Alfred Zayas, United Nations Special Rapporteur on democratic and equitable order; Remi Pagani, member of the Geneva City Council; Geoffrey Robertson, prominent British lawyer and First President of UN Special Court on War Crimes for Sierra Leon and member of the UN Justice Council; Ms. Najat al-Astal, Member of Parliament from Palestine; members of a Syrian coalition delegation including Mohammad Kadah, Deputy Chair of the Syrian National Coalition; Dr. Haitham Maleh, president of the legal section; Sabah al-Mukhtar, prominent Iraqi lawyer and president of the Arab lawyers Union in the UK; Ms. Julie Ward, Member of European Parliament; Peter Mathews, Member of Parliament from Ireland; Christiane Perregaux, co-president of the Constituent Assembly of the Council of Geneva; Dr. Tahar Boumedra, former advisor to the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in Iraq and former chief of the Human Rights section of UNAMI; and Ashraf Al-Shabrawi, former member of the Egyptian parliament .