Interview with Hossein

Hossein is a 33 year old man from Kurdistan, who fled from Iran in 2015. Here is his story.

Story from beginning. Actually the situation is good of Iran. We have the Islamic republic in Iran, and its kind of dictatorship, they’re abusing the religion. Most people in Iran are muslims so they can abuse the religion. Some people are not muslims. The problem is not sending people to jail, they execute people for simple things, religion, sexual orientation, thinking free. I cannot be in iran, people like me. They count us like muslims. In Quran, when someone changes from being muslim to another religion, ‘ertedad’, they execute them. This is a religion problem. Political problem. Totalitair government. The govnernment have some software as ideology, they have propaganda with tv ‘ this government is the best’ all the time until you get dizzy. They have hardware – police or people payed by the government to report on other peoples doing. They can easily send them to jail, torture them or execute them.

My parents were muslims. I had a lot of questions about that when I was young, maybe teenager. I decided to research about religions and other stuff, like philosophy. I’ve found nothing and decided to be an atheist. There were problems at the beginning, when I started being political active, writing articles when I was a student in university. I participated in demonstration. Every political demonstration in Iran is forbidden. I have been a political activist for the last 15-16 years. And then, I had some problems. Being in prison, being tortured. The torture was two-part. Mental and physical. I think physical its clear, they slapped me, turned their cigarettes off on me. Mentally, they told me they would torture and harass my family. Some water dropped from the ceiling on my head. At 4 o’clock they came in the jail shouting ‘who shall we execute?’ and also in that room there were no toilet. No bed. Nothing. They just came 4-5-6 times to kick and hit me.

After a while I had a tragedy, I lost my father. I felt some kind of responsibility to my family. I didn’t want to disturb them, my sisters or my mother, I had to take care of them instead of being a problem. I promised myself to prevent myself from doing political activities. But after a while, when it is my opinion that something is wrong, I have to do something, be active about it. And also, my sisters, my younger brother were growing up, they could take care of themselves, so I started again, but this time I found that when you are alone they can easily execute you. When you work with the party, they can use you and your story to continue the work. I began to work with the opposition party, and maybe its strange, cause there is no opposition party, so they work outside of iran. It’s more dangerous when you work with this party, because then the Islamic republic have every right to execute you.

At the beginning they had no proof against me. They called me and asked me questions. ‘ answer some questions’ they said. Always the same questions. Maybe one time in 2 weeks, other times 3 times in a week. But at last they could find a proof, they succeded and I had to leave the country. If I had choice, I would never leave the country. But, there were no choice. It was a choise between death or escape. I would prefer to stay and fight. So it was the reason I am here. In Iran, when you are a political activist you must learn to have 2 faces. Two personalities. There is secret police, maybe it could be my brother. So you must keep the political side to yourself. That is why my family doesn’t know.

Roskilde, May 2nd 2017

Dublin Core: Language: en Subject: refugees, asylum, kurdistan, denmark, a million stories