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Witness Statement: Shima Asaadi

Expulsion from the University

16. In January 2008, when I was in my fourth term at Azad University of Sanandaj, I received a letter from the University's security administration ordering the suspension of my study. I was surprised because until then I had never been on probation or had any academic problems; therefore, I went to the University's security administration. They told me that the reason for my suspension was my connection to the Kurdish Democratic Party! I denied my link but they had obtained documents like a picture of me with another KDP member and information pertaining to the CDs about the Kurdistan Democratic Party that we distributed to the people of Sanandaj. I do not know how they were able to obtain this information. Perhaps they had infiltrated us.

17. They told me that the Sanandaj intelligence office previously requested that the university expel me if I continued my activities with the Kurdistan Democratic Party. The University security office obtained information evidencing my continued support for the Kurdistan Democratic Party; therefore, they issued an order for my suspension and I was expelled from university.

The Threat of Rape

18. After the expulsion from the University, they summoned me a few more times under different pretexts. For a period of approximately two months, I received regular threatening telephone calls two to three times a week. They told me through the telephone that if I continued to support the Kurdistan Democratic Party, they would rape me and do other things that would cause my father and mother extreme grief. They said that I was garbage and that they had to rape me. They told me I had no family and that we (i.e. the Kurds) just wanted a free excuse to throw mud on the nation.

19. During that time, my father and mother went to visit my sisters who reside in Canada. My job became answering the threatening telephone calls of the agents everyday! Every time I would hang up on them but they just called again or called the house phone, or they called one of my acquaintances. Whenever they called, a bizarre number appeared on the caller ID.

20. Perhaps if I stayed in Iran I would not ultimately have gone to prison, however I was under the threat of rape. I love my country yet I was scared of losing my chastity. I did not want to be violated. The consequence of this in Iran is very grave. I was not just worried about myself rather; I was also concerned for my family. This fire would have also burned them.

Leaving Iran

21. I legally left Iran in 2008 and entered Turkey. After three days, I presented myself to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. After I left Iran, the agents learned of my whereabouts from my family in Iran and instructed my family to tell me I should return to them—and that the intelligence agents did not intend to harass me, that they only had a few questions for me. My family told them they had no news from me whatsoever.

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Kurds