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Meeting No. 38
Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Subcommittee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development met in a televised session at 1:04 p.m. this day, in Room 237-C, Centre Block, the Chair, Scott Reid, presiding.


Members of the Subcommittee present: Hon. Irwin Cotler, Russ Hiebert, Pierre Jacob, Wayne Marston, Scott Reid and David Sweet.


Acting Members present: Colin Mayes for Nina Grewal and Costas Menegakis for Russ Hiebert.


In attendance: Library of Parliament: Melissa Radford, Analyst; Charlotte Landry, Research Assistant.


Witnesses: As an individual: Wesley Martin, Colonel (retired), Military Police, United States Army.

Pursuant to Standing Order 108(2) and the motion adopted by the Subcommittee on Tuesday, November 29, 2011, the Subcommittee resumed its study on the situation in Camp Ashraf.

The witness made a statement and answered questions.


At 2:02 p.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 2:03 p.m., the sitting resumed.


On motion of Irwin Cotler, it was agreed, — That, whereas, the Subcommittee has heard compelling testimony regarding the deteriorating crisis in human rights in Ahmadinejad’s Iran, including:

- Iran is engaged in widespread and systematic assaults on the human rights of its own people, including a state-orchestrated wave of arrests, detentions, beatings, torture, disappearances, and executions;

- The rate of executions in Iran continues to escalate in 2012, and Iran has executed more people per capita than any other country in the world;

- Iran has imprisoned more journalists and bloggers than any other country in the world;

- Iran continues to target and imprison the lawyers of victims of human rights violations;

- The persecution and prosecution of the Baha’i community has intensified.

Be it resolved that:

- The Subcommittee condemn the systematic and widespread state-sanctioned assaults on the human rights of the Iranian people constitutive of crimes against humanity;

- Iran cease and desist from its state-orchestrated policy of wanton executions;

- Iran release its political prisoners, including the seven imprisoned Baha’i and ethnic Kurds and other members of targeted minorities, including Christians Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, convicted of apostasy for abandoning Islam;

- Iran cease and desist from its arrest and imprisonment of lawyers for no other reason than that they have defended victims of human rights violations;

- Iran cease and desist from its persistent and pervasive assaults on the rights of women, including also cruel and inhumane treatment and punishment such as stoning;

- The Government of Canada sanction the major human rights violators responsible for the ordering of, and complicity in, the wanton executions and massive assaults on human rights, and put them on notice that they will be held accountable before the law.

In particular, be it resolved that:

- The Subcommittee calls for the immediate release and dropping of all charges in the cases of Iranian-Canadians Saeed Malekpour and Hamid Ghassemi-Shall, who are both under imminent threat of execution, and who should be allowed to return to Canada on humanitarian grounds;

- The Subcommittee refers the subject of human rights in Iran to the Foreign Affairs Committee and recommends that it endorse this resolution and, in particular, adopt a statement in the matter of Saeed Malekpour and Hamid Ghassemi-Shall.


At 2:06 p.m., the Subcommittee adjourned to the call of the Chair.


Georges Etoka
Committee Clerk

2012/05/18 11:27 a.m.