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Slavery -The Ostentatious Hypocrisy of BRICS towards Black Africans - Gatestone Institute - 30.08.23

by Paul Trewhela former political prisoner in South Africa between 1964 and 1967, and a co-founder and co-editor of a banned exile journal, Searchlight South Africa (1988-95).


In a garish example of anti-democratic, anti-West, collective state hypocrisy, leaders from the BRICS bloc -- representing Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa -- meeting in South Africa over three days last week invited four Muslim states and two others to join the bloc, while keeping total silence over the racist and Islamist massacre by heavily armed Arab militias of black African civilians being carried out in West Darfur in Sudan over the preceding weeks.


"Atrocities pile up in Darfur after 100 days of Sudan fighting", in which "Arab militias are accused of killing lawyers, human rights monitors, doctors and non-Arab tribal leaders". — Al Jazeera, July 24, 2023.


" The city of Al-Geneina in West Darfur has been ethnically cleansed." — Humanitarian worker, Sky News, broadcasting scenes of thousands of desperate Sudanese refugees displaced in neighbouring Chad, August 17, 2023.


The Africa Defense Forum disclosed on May 16 that Russia's Wagner group was supervising gold-mining in Darfur, and smuggling nearly $2 billion in gold out of the country.


Yet the "great and the good" -- China's President Xi Jinping, Brazil's President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, with Russian President Vladimir Putin addressing the congregation by video to endorse Russia's war in Ukraine -- made no mention of this genocidal massacre.


Instead, the BRICS leaders invited states with the world's longest history of enslaving black Africans to join them.


China's Xinhua news agency reported how Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi, who attended the BRICS conference, hailed it as a "commendable step that will facilitate worldwide development while upholding principles of justice."


Justice? Raisi was deputy prosecutor general in a four-member committee codenamed the "death commission" in Iran in 1988, which was responsible for the executions of thousands of political prisoners who were loyal to a banned opposition movement, "on orders issued by Raisi and his three colleagues."


Worse, although slavery continued legally in Iran until 1929, "It never went away". — iranwire.com, April 30, 2020.


This article ends with these historic words:


The history of black African slaves in Iran was reported in a major 2016 article by Denise Hassanzade Ajiri in The Guardian, under the title "The face of African slavery in Qajar, Iran," in which she wrote:


"The African slave trade in the Persian Gulf began well before the Islamic period. Mediaeval accounts refer sporadically to slaves working as household servants, bodyguards, militiamen and sailors in the Persian Gulf including what is today southern Iran. The practice lasted, and evolved, through many centuries. In Iran's modern history, Africans were integral to elite households. Black men were mostly eunuchs working inside the king's harem and houses, while black women were servants to Iranian women.


"Despite its ancient roots, the topic of African slavery is rarely discussed or even acknowledged in Iran. This is partly because there has not been comprehensive research on either African slavery of the subsequent use of African domestic servants."


The article featured a series of photos of black African slaves in Iran, such as this one from the 1880s:


"Rarely discussed or even acknowledged in Iran," wrote The Guardian, the issue of the enslavement and oppression of black Africans -- continuing to this day in Darfur and elsewhere -- is an issue suppressed by BRICS.



Paul Trewhela was a political prisoner in South Africa between 1964 and 1967, and a co-founder and co-editor of a banned exile journal, Searchlight South Africa (1988-95).


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Gholam Hoseyn Mirza Masoud, one of Zell-e-Soltan's sons, with his personal African slave, Julfa, Isfahan, 1880s. (Image source: Thooni Johannes/Institute for Iranian Contemporary Historical Studies, Tehran/The Guardian/Wikimedia Commons)


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