A sit-in protest by Iranian opposition activists in front of the UN Headquarters in Geneva moved into its fourth year this week.
The daily protests demanding that the UN honors its commitments to protect Iranian dissidents in Camp Liberty has been ongoing for 1105 days on May 9.
Alfred de Zayas, a United Nations Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order, praised the perseverance of the protesters – that include the families of Camp Liberty residents – said in a speech to the demonstrators in Geneva.
Mr Zayas recalled how on September 9, 2013, six independent Rapporteurs of the United Nations issued a press statement calling for an independent judicial investigation into several massacres in camps Ashraf and Liberty. But he said so far, no such independent judicial inquiry had been carried out.
He added: “The major problem regarding human rights is the silence, that I call a criminal silence. There are many who are not aware of what members of the PMOI (MEK) [People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran] have gone through and there are many who don’t know what has happened to Ashraf and Liberty. We, the UN Rapporteurs, have a responsibility to you.”
Mr Patrick Lussi, a member of the Geneva parliament, speaking at the event said: “In the fourth year of your sit-in I say, dear friends, friends who are committed and loyal to democracy, that many of you are sacrificing your life to win your fundamental rights which are freedom, democracy and free will. Some may ask how is it that this representative of the people of Geneva has something to say to you? I only speak about the context and principles for which I am a representative of people of Geneva, which is the value of patience, and values to understand others, especially the values enshrined in the Geneva conventions.
“One of the first values of the 1929 Geneva Conventions concerns prisoners of war and the guarantees of their right to fight for their ideals.
“In my opinion, all of you strugglers have paid the price for your resistance against the Iranian regime in Ashraf and Liberty with your lives and blood and commitment.
“I have heard from your President Mrs Maryam Rajavi about your deep commitment to guarantee a democratic regime in Iran.
My Iranian friends, I have supported you for many years. I will be at your side to tell you to continue and to assure you of my support because your goal is a just one. You are for freedom in Iran. You are struggling for the freedom of women and democracy. ”
The protesters condemned the silence and inaction of the United Nations over the protection of Camp Liberty residents and condemned the atrocities and massacres committed by Nuri Maliki’s government and the Iranian regime in camps Liberty and Ashraf, and the conspiracies under the UN emblem against Camp Liberty residents.
Participants also condemned the recent attack by Iranian regime agents against the prisoners in Ward 350 of Evin Prison and demanded the dispatch of a delegation to investigate it.