DIWANIYA / Aswat al-Iraq: Iraq’s Legislature, Ihsan al-Awadi, the MP for southern Iraq’s Diwaniya Province and several other citizens have demanded the Iranian government on Tuesday to release about 6,000 Iraqi Prisoners of War (POWs), they said were still detained in Iran since the Iraq-Iran War, after 2 decades of their detention.
“We have received appeals from the families of the POWs and other Iraqis lost since the Iraq-Iran War (1980-88), to uncover the fate of their sons, who were taken prisoner or lost over 2 decades ago and most of them exist in Iranian prisons, number of whom exceed 6,000, according to non-official sources,” Awadi told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.
“So, I demand the Iranian government and its Highest Religious Authority to disclose the fate of those POWs and other Iraqi prisoners, in order to close this dossier, suspended for over 23 years,” he said.
Awadi called on the Iraqi government to “ demand the Iranian government to define the fate of the Iraqi POWs of the Iraq-Iran War, along with the Kuwait government about those detained over the War over Kuwait,” he stressed, adding: “We expect goodness by the Iranian Islamic Government and its High Religious Authority, to listen to the voices of Iraqis, appealing to release the Iraqi Prisoners and to uncover the details related to the dossiers of the POWs and other lost Iraqis.”
In a related development, the Father of the POW, Iyad Fadhil Saadoun al-Juheishy, the Speaker for several families of POWs and other lost Iraqis, told Aswat al-Iraq: “My son is detained in Iranian prisoners since the Iraq-Iran War, and was arrested in 1986.”
“After the downfall of the former Iraqi regime in 2003, I went to the Iranian Islamic Republic, where I applied to its officials, I was sent by the Higher Council of the Islamic Revolution in Qum to the Higher Islamic Council in Tehran, where I was told that there were large numbers of Iraqi POWs in Iranian prisons, and I had to demand the Iraqi government to demand their release,” he said.
He said that after that he appealed to several Iraqi Religious Authorities, including the Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, Ayatollah Mohammed Taqi al-Mudarrisi, Sayid Hassan al-Sadr, but none of them responded to his demand.’’
“Then I appealed to several Iraqi Parliament members, but none had given me any listening ear, but the Legislature Ihsan al-Awadi, who got me several official letters, addressed by Iraqi Ministries to demand the Iranian government to discuss the dossier of the Iraqi POWs,” he stressed.
Juheishy said that “The Iranian Foreign Minister had stated before the last Iraqi elections that over 6,000 Iraqi POWs were existing in Iran.”
“There are several evidences and sources confirming that there are large numbers of Iraqi prisoners in Iranian prisons, as I had discovered during my visit for Iran, and the Iraqi government had informed me that my son Iyad is still alive, and his new had been reaching Iraq till the downfall of the former regime in 2003,” he stressed.
Diwaniya, the center of the Province carrying the same name, is 180 km to the south of Baghad.