Behind the smiles of the captives in Ashraf
Memories of Batoul Soltani- Part three
In the previous part, Mrs.Batoul Soltani described her defection process. She is going to explain her first visit within her family and her following activities in Sahar Family Foundation.
Batoul Soltani: out of Ashraf, there was another world. I found the opportunity to meet my family who had come to Iraq. It was so bizarre. The family is a spiritual gift: mother, father, brothers and sisters who are full of emotions and feelings. I realized how badly I had behaved to them, how much they had suffered because of me. I found out that my father had died due to a heart attack, and my mother had suffered a lot of grieves. So I had much motive to help the other families because I have seen that the organization is still capturing the youth of our country by various methods even deception and abuse of emotional relationships. If anyone wants to leave the group, they ruin his future so as he will have no future out of the group, forcing him to stay in the organization for his whole life.
After the defection, I could have had a normal life but I had enough motivation to stay in Iraq to help my ex-friends and those who are likely to be captured by MKO; the ones who are like me and who do not know what is waiting for them in the cult despite their deceitful smile and green lights. I know what is behind the smiles of the captives in Ashraf. They are very tired but they are afraid of complaining because they would be marked. They have no idea what to do. Even those members, who could leave MKO, have their own problems because the organization has functioned so violently that no one accepts the defectors either.
I learned about a foundation called Sahar, I contacted them and I was willing to help them. Then I became a member of Sahar Family Foundation and now I am a spokeswoman of that. My activities included a trip to Turkey to contact some of the defectors who had legal and financial problems there, we had some jobs and interviews there, with Mr. Masud Khodabandeh who is the founder of SFF.
We are trying to pave the way for MKO defectors to be able to live a normal life in a free society. Mr. Khodabandeh and I also had a trip to Karkul,Irbil,Soleimanieh and Dahouk, and we visited various defectors in these cities. I had recently a trip to the North of Iraq to help those ex-comrades. I could have some meetings with the deputies of Kurdish parties and some journals and international communities to provide the conditions to aid the defectors of MKO. I met and talked to many of them, I got acquainted with their life, problems and grieves. Now I am doing my best to aid SFF in order to help the defectors of MEK.
I had to help my husband; it was my responsibility to save him. I know what happened to him finally and what his motive at the beginning was. I asked his family for help inviting them to Iraq. They came to Iraq after some time, we went to camp Ashraf. I will explain the way the organization treated us in detailed in another part. The scenario they had designed was so significant that needs to be discussed carefully in a separate program.
My activities are partly based on my human feelings. I know my children are hostages in MKO where they are manipulated. I got to know that my daughter Setareh has been forced to come to Iraq. I know she didn’t want to come to Iraq at all.
They were so eager to bring Setare to Iraq before I leaved TIPF or Iraq. Unfortunately I got into some troubles and I couldn’t get in touch with my daughter. Later I figured out that they had convinced her to come to Iraq to visit her father. They brought her to Iraq last March and told her to stay there. She was told:”your mother has psychological problems and she wants to take you to Iran.” She was also told other lies to keep her in the camp as long as they can and of-course to manipulate her more and more. The first step has been the interviews against me but my daughter has resisted and hasn’t done it. But they have terrified her so terribly that she doesn’t answer my phone calls turning off her cell phone. Then she was taken to Ashraf to visit her father who has treated her so unkindly- He has not been in a normal condition- Then she was taken to their indoctrination system. They have manipulated her so seriously that she is completely mixed up now; she is in Netherland where my son is living. She was taken there to work on her brother, Miaad who is totally confused now.
Miaad says:” How is it possible? I am sixteen now, and I haven’t had any idea that I have a sister, mother or father. I don’t know what’s happened that now I have a father and I am repeatedly invited to go to Iraq to visit him or now I have founded my sister after years, in another European country.”
One of my tasks is to go to a European country to pursue the case legally to be able to visit my children after 16 years. My son was 6 months old when the organization separated him from me. I haven’t seen them for 16 years. I missed them a lot. I’d really love to see them but what shall I do that the terrorist cult of Rajavi commits any crime against the defectors.Translation: Nejat Society