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Message to My interrogator: The Mousavi Brothers

May 16, 2016
Message the Torturers and the Murderers
3 min read

Each of us have perhaps found ourselves in a situation where we have been bullied by somebody in a powerful position, and remained silent out of expediency or fear. He or she may have been a friend, the neighborhood bully, an interrogator, or even a murderer.

Now imagine that years after the distressing event you have the chance to talk to that person and tell him how you felt, what you think and whatever else is on your mind.

IranWire asked a number of political and civil activists and artists who have been the victims of interrogators, or have been forced to be separated from their families, to imagine they are in the interrogation room and are able to talk to their bully, send him a message, or speak to those responsible for victimizing their family members.

In this part of the series we asked two brothers, Hooman and Yasan Mousavi, to send a message to their interrogators.

Hooman Mousavi was born in 1986 in Adel Abad Prison in Shiraz. A month before Hooman’s birth, his father had been executed in connection with his political activities. Hooman spent the first two years of his life inside a prison. His mother was also executed in 1988, and he was put in the care of his aunt. Hooman himself was first arrested when he was just 12 years old.

During Iran’s 2009 presidential election, he supported Mir Hossein Mousavi, working as a campaign activist in the Tehran district of Narmak. He was arrested in the violent aftermath of the election and sentenced to three years in prison and 74 lashes for “taking part in an illegal gathering and conspiracy against national security” and for “insulting the president”.

Yasan Mousavi was born in 1985 and became a children’s rights activist, focusing on underage workers in Tehran Bazaar. He spent two and a half years at Evin Prison for “confusing the public mind” and “taking part in an illegal gathering and conspiracy against national security”.

The Mousavi brothers now live in Norway. Hooman is an artist and Yasan continues his work promoting human rights.

“The wheel of life keeps turning and turning,” Yasan Mousavi tells his interrogator in this video. “That day you blindfolded me and sat me in a corner you thought you were the biggest man in the world. You interrogated me, tortured me, threatened me and threatened my family. You never imagined that one day you would be sitting on the same chair, blindfolded, that you would be pressured and threatened.”

Yasan tells the interrogator to imagine what it was like for the people he tortured.“You take somebody who has not committed a crime away from his family, without any evidence. You put him in solitary confinement. You interrogate and threaten him every day, every hour. And you don’t even allow him to have fresh air.”

Yasan demands answers from his interrogator: “What was my crime?” he asks. “My crime was helping children who worked in the bazaar. I collected donations from shop keepers to buy these children books and work gloves to prevent their hands from getting injured. According to what religion, by what criteria, did you conclude that I was a traitor? On what evidence did you decide that I was receiving money from Israel and America to create a “resistance nucleus”? You think what I did was a crime? Based on what religion?”

The Mousavi brothers have a lot to say to their tormentors about their ordeal, but they also want to remind them that there are many others like them who have died, and who never had the chance to confront their torturers. “Whatever you did to us is in the past,” Hooman Mousavi tells his interrogator. “We had a goal, a belief and we acted on it. And we were ready to pay the price. But I have been thinking about the people you dealt with who were put to death. What about them? What would they tell you if they were here today?”

IranWire has recorded a number of messages from victims. And perhaps you have had similar experiences as well. If you have, we ask you to participate in this project. For more information — technical or otherwise — email us at [email protected].



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