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By Touba Bozorgmehr, hunger striker in Camp Liberty

Today marks the 87th day of our hunger strike here in Camp Liberty and our colleagues in numerous cities across the globe. Although 87 days is a very long time, and the health conditions of many of the hunger strikers are deteriorating, the last issue on our mind is time because we have pledged to continue this path until the release of the seven Ashrafi hostages.

Just like how appeasement advocates use the passage of time to have Maliki’s crimes forgotten and literally vanish in air. Of course, the passage of time is unfortunate in one view. It is unfortunate for the United Nations’ international treaties and commitments violated and trampled by the United States government to protect Ashraf residents. This is truly unfortunate for countries that consider their fundamental values in reaching human rights ideals and causes. However, maybe this issue resolves their short-term political economic dilemmas because during these three months after the massacre of 52 people in Ashraf, we have not seen even in the minimum any effort from the UN and US take measures to follow up on this grave crime against humanity at the hands of Maliki’s forces.

However, on the other hand unfortunately we are witnessing how through their silence they are actually whitewashing the bloody hands of the murderers involved in this crime, and also through their claims of having no knowledge of who committed this crime and in a way selling their very conscience in all this infamy. But how much and until when? This is the question that they must answer, before history, society and their own consciences. Maybe, just maybe, they may be placed before an impartial court. What are they going to say then?

Of course, we are paying the price of all this shame with our very lives. We are paying this price as a last resort for freedom, to send the message of truth, to inform the awaken consciences on human rights, and most important of all, for the release of the seven Ashrafi hostages abducted during the Sep. 1 massacre. Why? Because the US and UN have betrayed us on their promises in the face of five massacres against us by the Iraqi government.

For the sake of your own conscience and for the sake of humanity, you should release the seven hostages and place pressure on Maliki in this regard. We are all deeply worried of their conditions.

In one of her statements on the status of Iraq’s prisons, UN human rights chief Navi Pillay said conditions are worse than where animals are held. Now, it has been three months since our hostages are held in such places. Therefore, we call on all awaken consciences across the globe to take action for the release of seven hostages, consisting of six women and one man. They are facing torture and extradition to the vicious mullahs ruling Iran.