Hamzeh Rahimi a member of Mojahedin-e Khalq was killed under torture when he was imprisoned in the group’s Camp Ashraf. He was an officer of the Iranian army taken as a POW by Iraqi forces before he was recruited by the MEK. He was deceived to join the MEK by the group recruiters when he was in Iraqi POW’s camp under too much physical pressure.
Mirbagher Sedaqi, former member of the MEK was in the same unit as Hamzeh was in the MEK’s headquarters in Iraq, Camp Ashraf. He states that Hamzeh had been a pilot of F-5 aircrafts in the Iranian army. He recalls the patriotism of Hamzeh although he was in the side of the enemy of Iran.
“When Iraqi military advisors wanted to know about the tactics used by the Iranian army, Hamzeh refused to give information,” Sedaqi writes.
Thus, Hamzeh Rahimi became the target of his commanders. “Since then, Hamzeh was a problematic member,” Sedaghi asserts. “He got disappeared in a few months. His name could not be found either in the list defectors or martyrs of the group.”
MEK commanders setting enmity between two friends
Gholam Reza Shekari was a close friend of Hamzeh’s in the MEK. In 1994, both of them were jailed, interrogated and tortured in the group’s notorious prison called Eskan. Shekari recounts,
“After a week, they jailed me in the same cell that Hamzeh was. We wondered why so many people were jailed, beaten and interrogated every day. Some of them would be disappeared after some time.”
After a month, again GholamReza and Hamzeh were separated. “I was getting weaker and weaker under the daily mental and physical torture. I had nothing to say to the interrogators. So, they kept on beating me.” After a few days they told him that he would be confronted by someone. “I was sure that someone would be Hamzeh,” Gholamreza writes. “Hamzeh had been awfully tortured. His eyes were swollen and bruised. He told some words against me that I was sure were not his own words. He had been forced to say those nonsense.”
That was the last visit of the two friends. GholamReza was not even allowed to ask about the whereabouts of Hamzeh. “The MEK leaders pretended as if he had left the cult,” GholamReza testifies. “However, when Hamzeh’s family came to Camp Ashraf, the authorities of the group gave them the code of his grave in the cemetery of Karbala, Iraq.”
Using oil of food to soothe the wounds left by torture
The third defector who has witnessed the heartbreaking fate of Hamzeh in Rajavi’s prison is Ardeshir Darvishi. “I was jailed there together with Hamzeh Rahimi and Hassan Yazdi,” he recounts in his memoirs of Ashraf prison. “We were shocked. We did not know why we were imprisoned. Assadollah Mosana, Mokhtar, Sayedsadat and Mohammad Mohaddsin, the interrogators, had no answer. They beat us for three nights. The fourth night, they told us to confess that we were the spies of the regime!”
Writing about his own distressing experience of being tortured by MEK commanders, Ardeshir speaks about Hamzeh too. “Hamzeh Rahimi had been tortured too,” Ardeshir writes.
“They had used a cable to beat him on the back and feet. His body had been so swollen that he could not sleep on his back. We applied the oil of our meals on his wounds to soothe his pain.”
After three months of detention under severe mental and physical torture, the suspected rank and file of the MEK were forgiven by Massoud Rajavi and took back to their units in Camp Ashraf –although they were still isolated from the outside world. But Hamzeh was not seen any more. He was disappeared in Eskan prison. “Later we found out that Hamzeh Rahimi had been killed under torture,” Ardeshir states.
Another former comrade of Hamzeh is Ali Moradi. They were both from military personnel of the Iranian army before they joined the MEK. In 1992, in a visit of an American military advisor to camp Ashraf, as former officers of the Iranian army, Ali and Hamzeh told him about the capacities of the Iranian army. The result was troublesome for both of them.
They were summoned to Mahvash Sepehri’s office. She criticized them for what they told the American advisor. “She questioned us why we had spoken to the American guest in person; why we had talked of the Iranian army.” Ali recalls. “’Why did you defend the Iranian army’, she asked us.” Ali and Hamzeh were shocked by Sepehri’s questions. “Since then, Hamzeh started hating the group, he opposed all of their orders and agendas,” Ali continues. “So, he was always under pressure by the commanders. He was humiliated by them. Eventually in 1994, he was imprisoned, tortured and killed in Ashraf prison. No trace was left of him.”
Hamzeh Rahimi was not the only victim of MEK’s violence against its own members. Parviz Ahmadi and GhorbanAli Torabi were also killed in that very year in the notorious prison of the MEK.