When Sleeping Women Wake, Mountains Move

When Sleeping Women Wake, Mountains Move

This was the title of a conference convened by Justice for Iran on Saturday 8 June at Regent’s College, London.

The packed Turke Hall once again witnessed speaker after speaker talk of their experiences of mass killings in Iran, Rwanda, Darfur in Sudan and the heroic actions of the survivors of the atrocities

In a panel which was chaired by Professor Payam Akhavan, Dr Mariam Suliman a survivor from Darfur in south Sudan spoke of the genocide of 10 years which still continues to this date.

Esther Mujawayo spoke of her horrific experiences during Rwanda genocide in 1994 and the memory of the loved ones she lost.

Khatereh Moini spoke of the loss of two brothers during the 1988 massacres in Iran, the Khavaran cemetery, the mourning mothers and their battle with the security forces who wanted to remove them from mourning their loved ones even if they did not know where they had been buried.

Other speakers talked about their experiences in the Iranian prison, torture and rape in detention and the denial of the Islamic Republic of Iran to this date of the genocide of the 1988. Testimonies of some of the women were so unbearable horrific that one could not endure to hear what human are capable to do with other human beings. Almost all the women who so courageously came forward to speak of their experiences emphasised that they did not want revenge but justice. Justice is what all the survivals and the rest of the population want to be done.

Dr Ahmad Shahid, UN Special Raporteur on Iran, spoke of his finding during interviews with 400 Iranians outside the country. He also spoke about the reports he has presented to the UN on the situation of human rights in Iran.

Shadi Sadr one of the founders of Justice for Iran who has relentlessly worked to gather information about victims of injustices in the Iranian legal system spoke of their findings during their research to document the facts. She said she knows that speaking about such horrific experiences is difficult but the aim was to give a voice to the voiceless. Those who cannot otherwise speak about their suffering. It is through these firsthand account that we understand what really happened during the genocide in our country or elsewhere.

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