Mr. Bryan Wilfert, Richmond Hill Member of Parliament
225 Eat Beaver Creek
Richmond Hill, ON
Dear Mr. Wilfert,
In our meeting on Friday January 25, 2008, you asked me some questions regarding the situation of my sister, Somayeh Mohammady, as well as my parents who are also currently in Iraq, and the correspondent of the Canadian government. I have some doubts that I was able to answer your questions in a satisfactory manner since talking about this situation makes me too emotional and uncomfortable to properly formulate my thoughts and responses. I also wish to remind you that I am personally a victim of this brutal situation and suffered in the same condition that my sister experiences, for four years.
Since 1998, knowing the nature and means of this organization, my parents started an internal campaign to free and return my sister back to Canada. As you might be aware, up to 2003 and before toppling of Saddam Hussein, it was impossible to talk about or disagree with the MKO publicly. If they have this much power to force a young girl to denounce her family and call her parents agents of the Iranian regime just because they tried to take her out of a war zone and from the camp of an organization that has been branded terrorist by many Western governments, you can clearly understand how dangerous and impossible it could have been back than when the leadership of the MKO had the full support of Saddam and anything could have happened to my sister with no consequences to those responsible. Even after my 2004 release, and up to recently, I had serious concerns for my safety to talk about my own situation and just recently decided to come out and support my family regardless of the consequences to myself.
If, even now that this group is supposedly under the custody of American and International forces in Iraq, they can be such potential danger that the Canadian authorities call me to inform me about the threats to my parents lives in Iraq and ask me to force them to return to safety in Canada, you can imagine what it could have been like back in those years. For that reason in those years all my parents could do, that even than it was considered bold and risky by those aware of the MKO’s violent means, was to try to find influential people inside the organization or write to the Rajaviâ€™s to beg for my sister’s freedom and safe return. You might find translated copies of those letters in the possession of our lawyer Ms. Pamila Bhardwaj as part of our legal file. Even the fact that my father agreed to send me to Iraq in 1999 was a hopeless attempt to find a way to bring her back without going public against such a malicious organization.
The rest is documented and I hope you have some knowledge of it. I was captured too and could not get out until 2004 after the regime change in Iraq that also reduced the power of the MKO leaders. Though at the beginning, and by the advice of those close to us, I pretended to be happy and willing as a cover up to set the ground for my sister’s release, as soon as they learned about my real intention, I was kept in solitary confinement and tortured in many brutal and inhumane ways. However, since I was a Canadian citizen at that time, my father was able to take me out in 2004 but, although my sister expressed her desire back then to go with us, since she did not have Canadian status after 7 years of absence from Canada, she was asked by the authorities at the time to remain there till they resolve this issue which they never did up to this point.
What is being used against my father by the MKO, and unfortunately being echoed by some Canadian authorities, is the fact that since that time my father made numerous trips to Iraq, ignoring the dangers on the ground. This should tell you how important the situation is to my family. We tried everything from desperately begging the Rajaviâ€™s and the other leaders of the organization, setting up informative campaigns, following a lengthy legal process and physically going there and putting our lives in danger. What else do we need to try in order to make the Canadian government understand that we are extremely suffering and need to reunite with our sister and daughter? It is not only because we are worried for her and miss her, not because none of us can enjoy our lives knowing that one of us is trapped in such a horrible situation, not because we feel disempowered and humiliated for the constant rejection of our plea, not because knowing the conviction of my father that he will not stop until he brings her back and fulfills his duties as a father even if we lose everything, but simply because we are Canadians and the day we took the oath we were promised the same rights and protection as the rest of the citizens of this great country. Many people come to Canada every year from backward, violent and undemocratic corners of the world trying to make a new start and learn and follow those rules that make this country so great and outstanding. We are learning too but at the same time we need to feel belonging and that we are equally a part of it.
At the end, in my humble opinion, it does not reflect positively on our government to use or repeat the same allegations, against my family, as those used by the MKO mouthpieces. Every day in the past 5 years people left the camp, committed suicide or denounced this organization. The same label was used for all of them that they have been bought by a third party and have a shady agenda. We are opposing this mentality and ask you to use an open and fresh mind to help us.
With many regards,
January 26, 2008