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Iran: Human Rights Record of Ebrahim Raisi, Eyewitness Accounts, Ali Zolfaghari

Iran: Human Rights record of Ebrahim Raisi, Eyewitness Accounts, Ali Zolfaghari

My name is Ali Zolfaghari. I was arrested in 1981 for supporting the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK). I spent some time in a prison in Rasht, northern Iran. I had many cellmates who were the MEK’s supporters and members. They were executed later those years for persisting in their ideals and supporting the MEK.

One of my cellmates was Reza Niknam. He heroically accepted all responsibilities of the actions done by our group of five people. He was executed on June 30, 1982. The regime did not allow Reza Niknami’s parents to bury their son in the cemetery. So, his mother was forced to bury him under the stairs in their home

He was just one example of someone who loved the MEK.
I met many MEK members while I was in Rasht. We held a memorial ceremony on May 25, 1983. After this memorial ceremony, the guards transferred us to the prison’s basement and then transferred us to Gohardasht prison. There, I witnessed prisoners resisting. They had sent us to exile to Gohardasht to punish us. They wanted to break us. A night before going to Gohardasht, they took us to Evin Prison.

The notorious criminal, Lajevardi, came and told us, “we will take care of you! Here is not Rasht.” As I said, they wanted to break us.
I am one of the survivors of the 1988 massacre. The regime had planned this massacre in early 1987 since it had lost its control over prisons, and the prisoners’ resistance was growing daily.

I was taken to the death corridor in 1988. After a while, I entered the court, headed by Nayeri. The regime’s current president, Ebrahim Raisi, was also present. I did not know him at first. Later those prisoners who were in Karaj told me he was Karaj’s prosecutor. Also, Shushtari was in that room, and I knew him from the newspapers.
It is not possible to describe the heroic resistance of prisoners.

They whole-heartedly said no to the regime. I was not able to support the MEK then. But I still have those memories. I remember, when my friends were taken in groups to the gallows, they had knowingly chosen to sacrifice themselves and defend their identity of being a MEK supporter or member. One of them was Behrooz Shah-Moghani, who told me: “I defended the MEK in front of the death commissions.”
I was sitting beside Behrooz in the corridor, and my dear Behrooz was singing the “Iran Zamin” anthem.
Hamid Noury came and kicked him and took him for execution. I sometimes wonder why they left and we survived.

But our pains are reduced since we are supporting the MEK since Mr. Massoud Rajavi is still our leader and says we are still with those martyrs, and since we continue this path. We should hold all those criminals involved in that massacre to account. I will continue supporting the MEK as much as I can to bring this to reality.