Mehri Musavi a female member of the Mujahedin Khalq Organization was killed in 2003 after she asked to leave the group.
Born in 1961 Mehri Musavi was a student in her twenties studying in a university in the United States when she decided to join the MEK in Iraq. There, she worked for the group’s political unit as a translator and interpreter. Eventually, she was raised in the hierarchy of the cult of Rajavi and was nominated for membership in the group’s Elite Council which included only female members.
To remain a member of the Elite Council, Mehri had to stay in Iraq. She was not allowed to leave Iraqi territory according to the regulations of the Rajavi Cult. She had to promise that she would stay in the group for her whole life and Mehri could not admit such a harsh ruling. Thus, she asked for leaving the group.
Mehri’s determination to leave the MEK was faced with a process of suppressive sessions. The main session was a trial for Mehri which was held by Massoud Rajavi, himself. Maryam Sanjabi, former member of the MEK, worked in the same unit as Mehri did. In her testimony about the killing of Mehri Musavi, she writes about the trial:
“Massoud Rajavi called on her to speak. Mehri repeated her request for leaving the group calmly and courageously. Instigated by Massoud Rajavi, the whole audience started shouting at her as if she had committed the most terrible crimes! Rajavi who was mad with her told her, ‘You can kill yourself swallowing your cyanide capsule!’…He explicitly told her that as a nominee of the Elite Council she was sentenced to death penalty because she wanted to leave.”
The meeting did not end by Rajavi’s ultimatum. Female commanders and peers of Mehri also tried their best to show off their obedience to Massoud by humiliating, insulting and threatening Mehri to death. Eventually, Mehri was asked if she had changed her mind. Her answer was “No”. “I never forget what happened then,” Maryam Sanjabi writes. “It was a new act of violence and cruelty played by Rajavi.”
Sanjabi describes the scene:
“Very irritated and nervous, Rajavi asked Mehri to come up to the stage to talk to her in person. Immediately after Mehri went to the stage, he, Maryam Rajavi and a few of high-ranking commanders took Mehri to the corridor behind the stage. A few minutes later, there were terrible screams and cries. About an hour later, Mehri was brought back to the hall. She had been terribly beaten. Her whole body was bruised. Her hair was messy and pulled out.”
It is said that Maryam Rajavi had pulled Mehri out of under the Massoud Rajavi’s fist and kick. She had talked to Mehri trying to persuade her to retract her words, at least in front of the audience. Sanjabi recalls, “Having a lump in her throat Mehri finally addressed the audience, ‘I was wrong. I will stay.’ “
After the trial session, Mehri was no more employed in political unit. She was sent to kitchen. “This was a systematic punishment in the MEK,” Sanjabi says.
“Mehri Musavi was ultimately forced to swallow her cyanide capsule in May 2003,” Sanjabi writes. “It was after the invasion of the US forces to Iraq.” The MEK leaders told members that Mehri had killed herself to protest the entrance of the American forced to Camp Ashraf. “She asked for permission and we allowed her to kill herself so we name her a martyr”. This was read by a commander in a meeting for the Elite Council.
Nobody could believe such an argument for the death of a dissident member. Maryam Sanjabi worked in the personnel department of the organization, at the time. Some time later, she came across with a classified document. It was an order issued and signed by Massoud Rajavi. “Regarding the presence of the American forces at Camp Ashraf and regarding Mehri Musavi’s fluency in English and her problematic organizational conditions, Rajavi had stated that her being alive is troubling and she had to be eliminated,” Sanjabi writes. “This was a fact to prove Rajavi’s crimes and treasons against his own members.”