WW3 fears as Iran’s ‘cruel’ new president has ‘no boundaries’ on nuclear weapons
Iran's new president has "no boundaries" on nuclear weapons and will "100%" pose a terror threat to his enemies, torture victims told the Daily Star.
Ebrahim Raisi was a key prosecutor when thousands of the country's political dissidents were executed in 1988.
He won the presidential election on Saturday after being appointed attorney general by Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.
Two former supporters of the PMOI opposition group have told us of their harrowing personal experience of the hardliner.
They include a mother whose baby was brutally dropped to the floor during her interrogations and a man whose cellmate Raisi sentenced to death while having an epileptic fit.
Farideh Goudarzi said she was arrested and tortured seven days before she was due to give birth to her son Iman Afsahi in 1983.
She was put in solitary confinement and said interrogators used her son to torture her during her five-and-a-half years in jail.
Her husband, sister and brother were sentenced to death and she told of her shock finding out blood stains in her torture chamber belonged to her spouse.
Holding up photos of her family, Farideh told of her first meeting with Raisi as the provincial prosecutor.
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She said: "Two days before my arrest my husband also got arrested.
"There was a torture chamber 3m by 4m. There was a bed in the middle of the room and also wires or cables with different dimensions were also on the ground.
"There were blood stains all around the bed. It was evident that another prisoner had been tortured before me, later on I found out that it was my own husband.
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"I was nine months' pregnant and my due date was for the next week.
"In these circumstances, they put me on the bed and they started slapping me in the face and they also flogged me with those cables in my hands."
She later found out a young man among her torturers was Raisi and that her son was born 15 days later, to be present in all her interrogations.
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Describing stories of rape and amputations of prisoners' hands and feet, she added: "A very typical and regular way of torturing prisoners, especially political prisoners, is through their children.
"During all my interrogations and all my court sessions my son was with me. A very sad memory that I have is that one night a couple of these interrogators including also Ebrahim Raisi, they raided the solitary confinements in the prison.
"It was 1am and my son and I were sleeping. One of these interrogators, he grabbed my son to the height of roughly 50 to 60cm and then from that height he just threw him to the ground and while my son was crying and in shock, they started to tear apart his clothes.
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"They were looking for some kind of evidence or something. Ebrahim Raisi was present in that encounter that night and he was overseeing these actions."
Asked to describe Raisi, she said: "Based on my experience he was one of the cruellest and most ruthless people in the city of Hamedan.
"He showed me that he despised us, all of us as political prisoners… Anyone who was against the ideology of the Mullahs and now everyone in the world knows about his role in the 1988 massacre, so in a way he showed the whole world what person he is.
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"And for the rest of the world I can guarantee you the malign activities, especially in the Middle East, of the regime will increase and it means that there are going to be more terrorist activities and terror threats for the whole world, including your own country unfortunately.
"By appointing Raisi as president, the regime will escalate its efforts in order to acquire nuclear atomic bombs and capabilities."
Another exile Mahmoud Royaee said: "In 1980 my trial lasted only five minutes and I was sentenced to ten years. I was 18-years-old when I was arrested and my crime was to read a newspaper and being a supporter of the PMOI.
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"In the summer of 1988, on the third of August, I saw Raisi for the first time.
"It was at noon roughly, they summoned me to that room and I was faced with the death commission for the first time."
He said he narrowly avoided a death sentence by Raisi after refusing to sign a piece of paper asking him to renounce the PMOI and ask for amnesty.
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After he was sent out of a courtroom, one of the commission members asked him to put into writing everything he had said.
Mr Royaee said: "Later on I found out that they meant that I doesn't need to be processed anymore as I was to be executed.
"The third man of the commission came to me and said, write down everything you said right now and I did.
"Maybe it was an accident because those things that I said, people got executed for those words. Although I have to confess that I didn't defend the PMOI which so many others did and may be that's the reason."
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He told of how his friend and cellmate Kaveh Nasari was sentenced to death by Raisi while having an epileptic fit and paralysed from the waist down.
Mr Royaee said: "I can summarise the character of Raisis by saying Raisi killed Kaveh.
"He had epilepsy, he was paralysed and had lost his memory and his sentence was finished. Raisi knew him from when he was a prosecutor in Hamedan.
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"He was sentenced to three years imprisonment but even when he was in prison they tortured him again and gave him a couple more years, but he was supposed to be released.
"They were using those conditions and sicknesses as a tool in order to break the prisoners and to torture them even more.
"When he had his epileptic seizures he would smash his head to the floor. We were cellmates, we were trying to contain him but his face was always injured.
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"When they brought him to the [court] he had a seizure.
"In that condition he was summoned by Raisi and his death sentence was signed – a person whose prison sentence was finished.
"Kaveh was the symbol of humanity and innocence but Raisi erased him from the world and it shows what a person he is."
Asked if Raisi's appointment could increase the risk of terrorism and nuclear war, he said: "That's a very good question, I think 100%.
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"Any person instead of Raisi would have a certain range to stop, to go back, but as I said, he has no boundaries he's not going to stop.
"Appointing Raisi by Khomeinei to become president is a mockery of democracy in the world.
"He is like a sword of Khomeinei against all intentional conventions that all humanity is built on.
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"His face, his name even, reminds me of all those friends even closer than my own brother who got executed by his hand, so I don't know what I can say. 33 years has passed since that night and that day until today, there's not a single day that I would not recall my friends. So many were 13, 14, 15 at the time of arrest and after so many years of torture and imprisonment they got all executed.
"I believe that accepting Raisi as president of Iran is accepting a sword or machete on the neck of the people of Iran. It's the biggest insult to humanity."
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