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Iranian Court Orders US To Pay Over $1B For Supporting The Shah

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A court in Tehran has ruled that the US government should pay over one billion dollars in damages for what it called “US support for the Pahlavi dynasty.”

This follows a report that 15 individuals who were allegedly jailed during the monarchy, prior to the 1979 revolution, filed a lawsuit accusing the US of supporting the Pahlavi dynasty in establishing its security and intelligence service, SAVAK.

The plaintiffs claim that years of torture by the Shah’s secret police SAVAK left them with “physical, mental, and social harms.”

However, no details were provided about who those plaintiffs are, and what evidence exists to support for their claims.

Late last year, Iranian exiled prince Reza Pahlavi said that most of those held by SAVAK were agents of the Soviet Union. He also added that Iran’s present Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, was one of those trained by the KGB in Palestinian camps in Lebanon.

SAVAK was the main secret police from 1957 to 1979 when the Iranian Revolution took place, after which Prime Minister Shapour Bakhtiar ordered its dissolution.

The Islamic Republic is recognized by UN bodies and rights groups as one of the world’s most notorious violators of human rights. Reports of torture have been wide-ranging in connection with methods employed by Iranian intelligence and security forces, especially during recent protests and the resulting crackdown. Amnesty International has reported on cases of sexual violence, physical torture, and other cruel treatments made against detainees, including children. Such actions involve raping, beating, and subjecting to electric shocks.

Other reports have cited the use of pharmacological torture, whereby political prisoners are subjected to psychoactive drugs that produce grave psychic and physical distress. Some reports have indicated that the use of psychiatric torture have increased since the 2022 Women, Life, Freedom protests.