Int. jurists: Based on Geneva Convention Ashraf protection must return to US

15 08 2009

Thursday, 13 August 2009 Right to Left: Professor Cherif Bassiouni, President of the International Human Rights Law Institute at De Paul University in Chicago, Honorary President of the International Association of Penal Law in Paris, and Honorary President of the International Committee of Jurists in Defense of Ashraf (ICJDA); Professor Steven M. Schneebaum, senior member of the ICJDA in the United States; and Francois Serres, Executive Director of the ICJDANCRI – Professor Cherif Bassiouni, President of the International Human Rights Law Institute at De Paul University in Chicago, Honorary President of the International Association of Penal Law in Paris, and Honorary President of the International Committee of Jurists in Defense of Ashraf (ICJDA); Professor Steven M. Schneebaum, senior member of the ICJDA in the United States; and Francois Serres, Executive Director of the ICJDA, in a letter to the U.S. Defense Secretary and Secretary of State and the U.S. ambassador to Baghdad on August 10, said that according to Article45 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, the United States should resume responsibility for the security of Camp Ashraf.

The letter which was first made public by lawyers of Ashraf residents in a press conference in Washington on August10, states that almost a year ago in a letter on September12, 2008, the U.S. Defense Secretary was strongly warned against consequences of transferring the protection of Ashraf residents to the Iraqi forces. The letter reiterated that the transfer would be in violation of international law and the U.S. international obligations.

The lawyers’ August10 letter stresses: “Article45 of the Fourth Convention specifically provides that if the transferee state fails to honor its obligations to protected individuals, the transferring party –here the United States– must ‘take effective measures to correct the situation, or shall request the return of the protected persons.’ To underscore the seriousness of this requirement, it adds, ‘Such request must be complied with.’”

The lawyers recalled: “The U.S. is aware of these breaches of the Iraqi promise since American observers witnessed the raid on Ashraf and its aftermath. Yet it has neither taken ‘effective measures’ nor requested the return of the People of Ashraf to U.S. control.”

In the statement72 of the NCRI’s secretariat on attack against Ashraf released on August6, it was announced that: “The experience of the past year has proven that the current Iraqi government does not have the capacity and qualification to be responsible for the protection of Ashraf residents. In reality, unfortunately, the Iraqi government implements the wishes of the dictatorship ruling Iran to suppress the Iranian opposition in Iraq according to [a] ‘mutual agreement.’ As Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, wrote to the US President on August2, the solution is the following: The US forces be in charge of protecting Ashraf temporarily until an international force under the supervision of the UN replaces them.”

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
August 13, 2009


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