Iran Protests,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),PMOI

Ahvaz Steel Workers continue their protests in the its 2nd month

Iran: Steel Workers, Factory Workers, Drivers Strike Despite Regime Suppression

Ahvaz Steel Workers continue their protests in the its 2nd month

The Steel workers have entered the 2nd of their protests against the repressive regime.

Workers from the Ahvaz National Steel Industrial Group marked their 30th day of strikes on Sunday with a march through the streets of Ahvaz.

The striking steelworkers and their growing group of supporters marched through the city, chanting anti-regime slogans, such as: “Imprisoned work must be released!”

“Neither threats nor prison is useful anymore!” “Call of every worker: Death to the tyrant!”

“Workers would rather die than accept humiliation!”

“We stand; we die until we get our rights!”

“Our country is a place of thieves, it is unique in the world!”

“Rouhani, the liar; where is your key to the problems?”

The workers carried banners reading: “Do not sacrifice workers to the brokerage mafia!”

“Isn’t authorities’ silence against the Mafia the reason for their complicity?”

The regime has expended considerable effort trying to break the strikes through a number of measures. The head of the regime’s judiciary threatened striking workers with arrest, accusing the workers of “sedition;” suppressive forces have been dispatched to the scene or the strikes on numerous occasions, and the regime has made numerous false promises and misleading statements to the workers in order to persuade them to return to work under the same conditions they left in protest 30 days ago.

The Steel Workers of Ahvaz Will Not Be Fooled by False Regime Promises

Despite these measures by the Iranian regime, the Ahvaz steelworkers have vowed to continue their strike until their demands are met. Among the workers’ goals are returning the factory to government control, establishing production lines, providing necessary equipment and parts, providing quality insurance to employees, and paying wages on time.

The workers of the Haft Tappeh Sugar Factory also continued their protests on Sunday. The factory workers are protesting the regime’s unfulfilled promise to release the representative of the workers from jail. The workers have received a number of empty promises from the regime and say they will not tolerate anymore.

 

More strikes began as the drivers of the South Drilling Company protested against unpaid wages and a poor standard of living. The workers went on strike and blocked the Ahvaz road at the airport’s T junction.

The MEK and the Iranian Resistance support the striking workers and calls upon the Iranian people to join them in solitary with their strikes and protests.

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Student Day demonstration in Iran in various universities

Iranian Students Continue Student Day Protests Despite Arrests and Intimidation

Student Day demonstration in Iran in various universities

Widespread demonstrations in universities across Iran, on Student’s Day

Students at a number of universities in Iran protested over the days surrounding Student Day on December 7th. The protests began on Monday, December 3rd, and have yet to end, despite a number of repressive measures by the regime.

Students from the University of Tehran protested in front of the entrance to the university on Saturday, December 8th, chanting anti-regime slogans. Repressive forces arrived prior to the protest and blocked the streets around the university in an attempt to prevent the rally from occurring, but the students were undeterred.

Students at Tehran Technical College also protested on Saturday. MEK sources reported that the students chanted, “Student would rather die than accept humiliation!” and “One, Two, Three, Freedom!”

Similar protests and demonstrations were held on Saturday at Sharif University of Technology and Tarbiat Moallem University in Tehran, University of Anooshirvan in Babol, Tabriz University, Garmsar University, Ahvaz University, Semnan University, Sahand University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz University of Technology, Marand University, and Urmia University. The students chanted, “Imprisoned students must be freed!” The protesting students also chanted in solidarity with the ongoing workers’ strikes, saying, “Imprisoned workers must be freed!”

On Sunday, December 9th, students from the University of Tehran, Allameh University, and a number of other universities marched in protest of the regime and its policies. Students from the University of Tehran chanted, “Student, Worker, United, United!”

Suppressive forces have arrested a large number of university students in the Student Day protests. Students from the University of Tehran have been specifically targeted for arrest. Some of the arrested students have been summoned and subsequently threatened by the Intelligence Ministry. The regime hopes that it can prevent the protests from spreading with threats and intimidation. This strategy has been ineffective over the past year and has instead served to mobilize the Iranian people to increase the size and scope of their protests against the inhuman regime.

The MEK and the Iranian Resistance calls upon international student unions and syndicates to support Iranian university students. It further calls upon international human rights groups to take immediate measures to free students who have been arrested.

Staff Writer

 

 

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Protest by Iran Steelworkers continue.

The Steel Workers of Ahvaz Will Not Be Fooled by False Regime Promises

Protest by Iran Steelworkers continue.

The Steelworkers of Ahvaz continue their strike despite regime’s repressive measures

The strike undertaken by the steelworkers of Ahvaz has entered its fourth week. Reports from MEK sources inside Iran indicate that the workers remain determined to stand firm against the mullahs’ regime of oppression despite the regime’s repressive attempts to break their will and bring the strike to an end.

The Ahvaz steelworkers have been protesting unpaid wages and the poor working conditions inflicted on them by the regime.

On Saturday, December 8th, the regime sent its representatives through the Public Relations of Ahvaz Steel Factory organization to offer false promises in an attempt to break the workers’ strike.

However, the workers would not be deceived. After a hastily gathered general assembly, the striking workers decided that the regime’s words could not be trusted to carry weight. Their offered echoed the false promises made earlier in the strike by another regime-affiliated organization, the Khuzestan General Labour Office.

A Statement of Defiance

The workers released a statement in response to the regime’s offers. They said they would continue to protest until their goals were met, including the timely payment of wages, the reestablishment of factory production lines, and the reintroduction of worker insurance.

The workers would not accept anything less than the complete agreement to these demands.

This prompted ire from the regime, which quickly responded by summoning a number of the workers to the regime intelligence office in Ahvaz. The Iranian opposition, the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) and the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), reported that the workers were then threatened with arrest if the strikes continued.

This has been a consistent theme among recent demonstrations. Following the MEK-organised December and January nationwide uprisings, more than 8,000 protestors were arrested. Iran Human Rights Monitor reported that in regime custody, many of those detained were subject to conditions of torture and beatings.

Underhand Tactics

Beyond the ominous threat of arrest, there are concerns among the workers that the regime has sent mole elements into the workers’ protests movement. These moles are reportedly working to end the anti-regime protests and influence the protestors’ slogans and protest methods.

The NCRI and MEK, including president-elect Maryam Rajavi, have called on the people of Iran to support the protesting steelworkers of Ahvaz. There have been several gestures of support and solidarity with the workers, including among Iranian students.

Last week, students across Iran walked out of their classes and into the streets in a gesture of solidarity with their compatriots in Ahvaz. Their slogans contained messages of support.

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Iran executions,Iran human rights,Iran Protests,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,PMOI

Executions in Iran

Two Prisoners are Executed on Murder Charges

 

Executions in Iran

Archive Photo: Supporters of the MEK, participate in a demonstration in Berlin, calling for an end to executions in Iran.

Two prisoners in regime custody at Karaj and Bandar Abbas prisons were hanged on Saturday, December 8th. Jamshid Agharahimi and Behzad Adib were both convicted on murder charges. Adib was adamant that he was innocent of the crimes he was charged with and repeatedly asserted his innocence even after he was taken to Karaj Central Prison for his execution.

A String of Executions

The two executions were the latest in a string of regime state-sanctioned killings. On Thursday, the 6th of December, the regime executed 12 prisoners in Kerman. Four were of the Baluchi minority.

Similarly, at the end of November, three prisoners were publicly hanged in Shiraz. The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), published a video taken by an eyewitness which clearly showed the accused standing on the back of pickup trucks with nooses around their necks. They had hoods placed over their heads.

The three men stood convicted of “moharebeh” charges. These charges, loosely translated as “waging war against God”, are often used by the regime to execute political dissidents on arbitrary, jumped-up charges.

In mid-November, the regime also executed 10 prisoners in Gohardasht Prison in Karaj province.

Public Outcry

The regime’s use of the death penalty has come under scrutiny in recent months. The UN General Assembly’s Third Commission issued a statement condemning the regime’s use of the barbaric form of punishment. It expressed concerns over the “alarmingly high frequency” at which the state puts people to death.

U.N. Censures Iranian Regime for Human Rights Abuses for 65th Time

The General Assembly also took the opportunity to raise concerns over the “widespread and systematic use of arbitrary detention” and poor prison conditions, citing reports of the regime “deliberately denying prisoners access to adequate medical treatment” and “cases of suspicious deaths in custody”.

Iran Human Rights Monitor also recently released its annual report for 2018. Within the report, the human rights advocacy group found that the regime had employed the death penalty in 285 cases this year, including against political dissidents, and in cases where the alleged perpetrator committed the alleged crime under the age of 18.

The report shed light on the Iranian regime, which executed more citizens per capita than any other regime on earth. The Iran Human Rights Monitor report also found that ethnic minorities, including the Arab, Baluch, and Kurd minorities, were heavily overrepresented among execution cases.

The regime also administers particularly violent punishments, including the death penalty, against Sunni Muslims, Christians, Jews, and women.

The MEK and the president-elect Maryam Rajavi, have unequivocally condemned the regime’s use of the death penalty in all cases. It stands for the abolition of capital punishment in Iran and an independent judiciary to administer punishments independent of government interference.

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A call for stopping executions in Iran

Iranian Regime Executes Twelve Prisoners

A call for stopping executions in Iran

A demonstration by supporters of MEK in Paris, calling for an end to executions in Iran-February 2018

Twelve prisoners were executed in Iran’s Kerman Prison on December 6th. The prisoners were executed for the crime of drug trafficking. This is despite the fact that regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the Revolutionary Guards control the trafficking of narcotics in Iran. The regime and its surrogates use the drug trade to make billions of dollars to support the regime’s exportation of terrorism and warmongering in the region.

Two weeks ago, Rouhani said on State television that “when it comes to drugs, there is dirty money when there is dirty money, there is money laundering, in Afghanistan, in Iran, in Turkey, in Europe …”

Rahmani Fazli, Rouhani’s Interior Minister previously made this confession: “The annual flow of money from drugs is 20 trillion tomans, which is equivalent to two-thirds of the country’s development budget. Dirty money from drug trafficking penetrates all sectors. In the field of politics, elections and the transfer of political power in the country.”

The regime distributes drugs to finance its terrorist activities. Aside from the obvious issue of the regime’s exportation of terrorism in the region and abroad, the regime has powered a drug epidemic that has devastated the youth of Iran. In addition to this, the regime executes the victims of the epidemic it has created in order to create a climate of fear. The mullahs hope that this environment of suppression and intimidation will prevent the spread of anti-regime protests led by the MEK.

Garmaby, a member of the regime’s parliament, stated on the Parliament website that “the age of drug addiction has become very low in our country and (drug) is easily accessible to everyone. You can buy it [drugs] from any kiosk at the intersections.”

In a June 12, 2015 interview on State television, the Deputy Minister of Sports and Youth said, “Among the 23 million young people in our country, 3 million are addicted.”

According to the ISNA news agency, the head of the State anti-narcotic organization reported four million drug addicts in Iran as of October of 2018 and said that 21 percent of the country’s 13 million workers are addicted to drugs. The regime’s former Vice-President for Women’s Affairs said that 10 percent of drug addicts are women. The actual numbers are likely to be much higher than those reported by the regime.

The Iranian regime also exports drugs outside of the country and traffics them to a number of foreign countries. Reuters reported in November that 270 tons of heroin were discovered in a ship in the port of Genoa, Italy. The heroin originated from Iran. German media reported in May that 45 kilograms of heroin were found embedded in Iranian carpets at Germany’s Leipzig Airport. The carpets were intended to be exported. According to the Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Germany, 150 kilograms of heroin was found in Iranian trucks traveling from Iran through Turkey to Germany. Many other reports have surfaced of the regime’s large-scale distribution of narcotics.

On a November 19th report on Sky News, the Basra Provincial Police Commander in Iraq said Iran was “the source of 80 percent of the narcotics in the province.”

“Today, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps obtains the necessary currency through the sale of narcotics and has turned Iraq to the drug transfer center for different regions of the world,” he added.

“The Iraqi people and knowledgeable people are aware that drug trafficking in Iraq is under the control of the Iranian regime and is under the control of the Revolutionary Guards and supported by the militants of Hashd al-Sha’bi,” he said.

Staff Writer

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Ilam Petrochemical plant workers protest

Ilam Petrochemical Plant Workers Sentenced to Prison and Lashes for Protesting

Ilam Petrochemical plant workers protest

Petrochemical Plant Workers who had protested laying off colleagues and unemployment have been arrested and sentenced to long-term prisons.

On October 14th, the workers of the Ilam Petrochemical Plant were arrested and charged with “disrupting public order and peace” by the 104th Branch of the Ilam Penal Court.

Fifteen of the workers were sentenced to six months in prison and 74 lashes, according to human rights advocates with information about the situation. One additional worker, identified as Milad Dousti, was sentenced to two years in prison and 74 lashes.

The workers were punished for staging a sit-in outside of the factory this spring that lasted for several days and closed all roads leading to the factory. The factory workers were protesting unemployment of local workers and the recent layoffs of 11 experienced workers from the Ilam Petrochemical Plant.

The Ilam Petrochemical Company was founded in 2003 in order to market petrochemical and chemical products, including ethylene, propylene, and polypropylene.

Flogging sentences have become more common in Iran as the regime struggles to repress the growing protest and strike movement. In October, the state-run ILNA news agency reported that the 106th Branch of the Arak Penal Court sentenced 15 HEPCO workers to one to two years of prison and 74 lashes for “disrupting public order” and “instigating workers via the internet to demonstrate and riot” in a preliminary hearing.

The workers were arrested for protesting for their unpaid wages and against the unclear future of their company in May.

Many of the recent workers’ strikes in Iran have been caused by unpaid wages. The MEK has supported these workers’ strikes, including the most recent strikes by the Haft Tappeh Sugar Mill workers and the Ahvaz Steel factory workers. The workers believe that the regime’s corruption is responsible for the workers’ problems.

According to Iran’s Labor Code, citizens do not have the rights to form independent unions, even though Iran ratified the United Nations’ International Convention on Civil and Political Rights and membership in the International Labor Organization.

Amnesty International has repeatedly condemned Iran’s labor practices and its human rights record, saying, “Independent unions in Iran are banned, workers have few legal rights or protections, and union activists are regularly beaten, arrested, jailed and tortured.”

Workers in Iran are increasingly demanding their rights, and they are placing the blame for the lack of rights at the feet of the regime. The problems faced by Iranian workers will not be solved until the regime is toppled and democracy is restored to the country.

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1981 demonstration,1988 Massacre,Channel 4 propaganda,Disinformation by MOIS,Disinformation Campaign,Iran Diplomat Terrorist,Iran Regime Change,June 20,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI

What we are not seeing in Iran

Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian opposition, joins the general election of the MEK Secretary-General, September 2017. After her election as PMOI/MEK Secretary General, Zahra Merrikhi pledges to bring freedom to Iran

The wind of change blows in Iran. A lot of people feel it. A few people try to ignore it, not daring to face the consequences. But generally, it seems to be a proven fact that change is on its way. There are however important factors which are being ignored in the process…

In its bid to survive, the ruling regime seems to be eking out every last drop out of its legitimacy and is on the verge of an internal conflict of power among its warring factions. Public support is shrinking to new depths. Political unrest calling for regime change is now an everyday phenomenon.

The regime’s intervention in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere have bled the regime financially. Demonstrators in Iran are calling for their money invested in banks related to the Pasdaran Army (Revolutionary Guards Corps), but the institutions are bankrupt because of the continuous funding of extraterritorial military projects.

Politically, different political clans within the regime are at each other’s throats on specific issues such as the defunct nuclear deal with the West and the rejected FATF agreements on monetary transactions, among others.

The regime’s popularity, limited to a very thin social circle consisting of families of those under arms and the feared paramilitary Bassij (popular mobilization) force, is at its lowest point. Some two hundred towns across the country have experienced unrest against oppressive measures undertaken by the regime.

The international situation has never been so bad. Donald Trump seems convinced to go to the very end with the rejection of the nuclear deal, while European and other support seems unable to balance the American rejection.

This is not the first time the regime has faced grave difficulty. In 2009, Iran came close to social chaos following presidential elections leading to a second presidential term for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. But at that time, the stakes were only political and limited to Tehran, the capital. The opposition movement was led by dissident elements from the power’s inner circle. Also, on an international level, a reluctant Barak Obama was far from today’s Donald Trump who supports the popular movement in Iran.

The current unrest has lasted ten months. It stems from an unprecedented political and economic situation with no way out and with too many victims. Demonstrators do not hesitate to call for regime change, and a large number of towns now engaged in political unrest marks a significant break from 2009. Oppressive forces have to control vast territory and numerous cities, above all, they cannot afford to give an inch in Tehran.

Additionally, an important internal element is playing a role in the regime’s latest existential crisis. Organized groups are coordinating political unrest in cities across Iran. Social media is allowing for the grassroots mobilization of the Iranian opposition.

In February, the regime’s president Hassan Rohani called Emmanuel Macron, the French president, to ask for his support in muzzling the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization, or the MEK. Rohani claimed the MEK was engaging in planning and organizing activities in France. MEK’s umbrella organization, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, NCRI, is based in the French town of Auvers-sur-Oise. In any case, the French did not bother to answer Rohani’s call.

Later in June, a mass assassination plan was defused in Belgium. The attack targeted a huge meeting organized by the NCRI in Villepinte, north of Paris. An Iranian diplomat based in Vienna was arrested with three other individuals found with 500 grams of a powerful explosive and detonation mechanism. The four will go on trial in Belgium on premeditated murder charges.

Youth Vow to Make a Free Iran Possible At NCRI Gathering

In the meantime, Iranian leaders including the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei have not hesitated to point to MEK as the main instigator of the domestic unrest in Iran. The MEK’s leadership is the making the real difference between the current opposition movement in Iran and its previous ones.

Massoud Rajavi, the historical leader of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/ MEK)

Founded in 1965, MEK spent a dozen years fighting the Shah’s regime. MEK’s historical leader, Massoud Rajavi spent eight years in the Shah’s prisons before being liberated by the people’s uprising a few days before the Shah left Iran, for good.

Ideologically, the MEK is known for its modern, tolerant interpretation of Islam, its patriotism, and its social program calling for social justice and respect for Iran’s history and culture. The founding members were executed by the Shah in early 1970s. Their struggle for freedom and their tolerant Islam earned them much respect, even among religious circles close to the actual ruling clique.

Many of Iran’s current officials sympathized with the MEK at the time when the organization was bravely fighting the Shah. Clerics currently ruling the country kept a low profile under the Shah to avoid persecution by the feared SAVAK, the Shah’s oppressive secret police. Meanwhile, MEK members were being tortured and executed in the SAVAK’s prisons.

After their rise to power, the mullahs had a single serious opponent; the MEK. The organization underwent the most severe oppression in Iran’s modern history. More than a hundred thousand of its members and sympathizers were eliminated.

Dr. Alejo Vidal-Quadras Speaks at Geneva Conference Commemorating 1988 Massacre

In 1988, following the Iran-Iraq war, some thirty thousand members were massacred while serving time in the regime’s prisons. But the organization managed to keep many of its cadres out of the regime’s reach. It formed a National Liberation Army during the Iran-Iraq war in Iraq and finally evacuated its members in a spectacular operation in 2016 when more than 3,000 members were relocated to Albania.

Thus, in the regime’s worst days currently unfolding, its sole political opponent is very much present on the political scene. At the MEK’s last great gathering in Villepinte in France, the one targeted by the regime’s terror operation, more than a hundred thousand members of the Iranian diaspora gathered, as well as political figures including Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and many other internationally known political figures.

The most important issue the MEK champions is a total regime change in the country. The never fading presence of MEK has had an important political effect on the regime. It has made any halfway or reformist bid to modify or moderate the same regime utterly meaningless.

Most revolutions have changed course, towards more moderate rules, with objectives diverging from those held at the beginning of their campaign. When faced with an absence of opposition, even well-meaning revolutionary groups can evolve into a brutal regime once in power.

The Iranian revolution was no exception. However, in the case of the clerical regime, brutal repression was not able to eliminate the real opposition. This has had a by-effect: there can be no transmutation towards a more moderate version of the same regime while a total opposition is still alive.

In other classical cases, a compromise can be found, some sort of provisional or long-lasting solution emerging from the national social demands. But this Iran is no classical case. In fact, no compromise is possible between the opposition and the regime in power in Iran. Regime change is an integral part of the founding declaration of the National Council of Resistance, the political umbrella for MEK’s struggle against the regime.

This is one of the essential elements that a great number of people interested in the Iranian problem ignore: the ever-growing role and effect of the MEK on the course of events in Iran. The continuous denial and suppression of any opposition movement in Iran are triggering a domestic backlash.

A smear campaign aiming to discredit the opposition movement by the regime’s Ministry of Intelligence, along with vast lobbying efforts by preachers forms part of this systematic denial effort. But the whole house of cards began to tremble when the most important authorities in the country, beginning with the supreme leader, pointed to the MEK as the main factor behind this year’s civil unrest in the country. In his speech on January 9, Ali Khamenei stated:

“The incidents were organized and carried out by the MEK (although he used a different pejorative term). They had prepared for this months ago, and their media outlets had called for it.”

Prior to this defining moment, the regime’s leadership had publicly ignored the MEK’s presence in Iran. Khamenei’s speech indicated that the regime has thus changed its policy. It can no longer afford to ignore the danger the MEK represents. It is now clearly identifying the real danger the MEK represents in order to direct its repressive forces against the group.

Regime Official: The Threat Knows No Bounds

The change is not limited to words. For years, the Iranian regime has shown self-restraint when it comes to the assassination of opponents abroad. The regime had initiated more than 400 assassination attempts against opposition members outside its borders until the late 1990s. Then, Iranian rulers were condemned in absentia, by European courts for having ordered opponents to be killed on European territory.

With the failed explosion attempt at Villepinte in France, the sleeping dragon seems to have been awakened. At least two other such attempts have been discovered since the failed Paris attack, and there remains little doubt that the tacit agreement not to take such action in the West has breathed its last breath.

The changing stance of the mullahs towards the MEK is an important indicator of the threat the regime now faces. For years, a line of appeasement has prevailed among international governments. However, this approach has proved fruitless.

Another approach is necessary, one which endorses total regime change as the solution. Those wishfully thinking that a moderate force will emerge within the regime and amend its behavior and policy are ignoring the real influential factors on the ground, particularly the MEK and the traction it is gaining both inside and outside Iran.

Iran State Media Acknowledges MEK Can Topple Regime

The MEK and the Iranian regime’s disinformation

The Iranian public has been protesting in ever greater numbers and in an expanding list of localities since December 2017. Iran’s people are making it clear that they seek a regime change. This is key to understanding the developments in the domestic situation in Iran.

MEK has enjoyed unrivaled success in undermining the regime’s actions and strategies by sustaining complex anti-government campaigns such as exposing the regime’s nuclear sites and terror networks in the Middle East and across the world. It is now exposing the corruption and repression carried out by the theocratic regime in Iran. Therefore, it is easy to understand why the mullahs are so desperate to demonize the MEK, especially at a time when they are rapidly losing their international appeasers and their string of terror plots to physically damage the MEK have been unsuccessful.

Three full pages in the Guardian, a British newspaper, is part of the Iranian regime’s desperate attempt to hit its strongest opposition group. Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister, once said: “Tell a lie that’s big enough, and repeat it often enough, and the whole world will believe it.” But we say there is a limit to this. You cannot fool and trick the whole world forever just by repeating a very big lie in paid international media outlets.

The Guardian article “Terrorist, cultists – or champions of Iranian democracy?” written by Arron Reza Merat, a known anti MEK element of the Mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry who has infiltrated the Guardian, is an attempt to depict a violent, wild and power-thirsty picture of the MEK in a bid to evaporate Western sympathies to the Iranian opposition.

But it is too little too late. Today, MEK is not an unknown name that can be adequately vilified in a Goebbels-style article by Reza Merat. Its history is already known to many Iranians who wholeheartedly support it, and it is widely renowned by many prominent international politicians who have offered it unfettered support for over 15 years.

MEK History

The 1950s and 1960s were marked by severe repression against dissidents in Iran. After conducting a coup in 1953 against Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh, Iran’s popular Prime Minister who nationalized the country’s oil industry, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, Iran’s monarch, forced all opposition groups and movements into silence and submission.

However, on September 6, 1965, three Iranian intellectuals, Mohammad HanifnejadSaeid Mohsen and Ali Asghar Badizadegan, founded a new opposition movement that later became the MEK. They were inspired by the authentic interpretation of Islam that rejects all forms of fundamentalism, which had previously been the dominant interpretation of the religion in Iran.

Since its founding, the MEK has been opposed to the atheist/Muslim conflict that the fundamentalist mullahs promote. Hanifnejad and the other founders of the MEK stressed that the real conflict was not between faiths but between the tyrants (the Shah regime) and the oppressed (the people of Iran, regardless of their faith and ethnicity).

In the first five years, the MEK’s founders concentrated on recruiting new members and creating a network of elite cadres that could lead the movement through the hard times that would come. They engaged in thorough studies of all doctrines to gather everything that could help in their struggle because they viewed the struggle for freedom as a science to be studied and acquired in order to succeed where their predecessors had failed. After thorough examination and studies, Hanifnejad and his comrades eventually chose democratic Islam as the ideology that could best serve the aspirations of the Iranian people.

Thus, the MEK founders embarked on a long journey to establish freedom and democracy in their country and they paid a heavy price to defend the rights of their people. Their conduct has set an example of persistence and loyalty that is still admired by Iranians to this day.

Massoud Rajavi, the popular candidate for the presidency in Iran in the wake of the 1979 revolution. Rouhollah Khomeini, the leader of Iran’s religious dictatorship prevented him from running, since he felt a big threat, given rajavi’s popularity among all sectors of the society, and religious and ethnic minorities. He was known as the candidate of the new generation.

The MEK’s founders also recruited people who were willing to dedicate every hour to help advance the organization’s goals. They concluded that the fight for freedom and democracy can’t be a part-time job. The first people to join the movement were young intellectuals and university students. Among them was Massoud Rajavi, a young student who later became pivotal in shaping the organization’s future.

In August 1971, while the Iranian monarchy was preparing for its much-advertised festivities to celebrate its longtime rule, more than 80 percent of MEK’s members, including all of its leaders were arrested. This was a hard strike against the nascent organization, but it also led to the widespread recognition and popularity of the MEK among the Iranian people.

Stories of the MEK’s resistance in the Shah’s prisons and courts circulated among Iranians by word of mouth. Soon the organization had managed to build a solid and widespread support base in Iranian society, with supporters from all walks of life.

The ruling mullahs of today, who themselves did nothing efficient against the Shah, are well aware of the history of popular support for the MEK in Iranian hearts and homes. But they disgracefully pretend the opposite is true in their demonization campaigns.

On May 25, 1972, the Shah’s regime executed the MEK’s founders and of all its leading members. Only Massoud Rajavi was spared. He was saved from imminent death thanks to an international campaign by his brother, Kazem Rajavi who was a renowned jurist and politician in Switzerland. Kazem managed to get Massoud’s death sentence revoked by rallying several international organizations and politicians in support of Massoud. Among those politicians was Francois Mitterrand, the leader of the French Socialist Party and the future President of France.

A failed coup within the ranks of the MEK

In September 1975, the MEK was still recovering from the execution of most of its leadership cadre. During this period, a separatist Maoist group tried to change the ideology of the MEK and hijack its name and emblem. They went as far as intimidating, oppressing and even killing the MEK members who remained loyal to the organization’s original mindset and ideology. This group was responsible for killing several Americans in Iran in those years, something which is mistakenly being attributed to the MEK members in the mullahs’ demonization campaign against the MEK, also repeatedly used by the Iran lobbies.

Thanks to the efforts of Massoud Rajavi, the organization was brought back from the brink. In the fall of 1976, while Massoud was in the Shah’s prison, he issued a 12-point declaration, in which he reasserted the true foundations of the MEK’s ideology and its principles. The declaration became the basis upon which all MEK members resist the world’s most brutal regime and number one executioner.

Since Khomeini’s rise to power, the MEK has constantly warned of the new regime’s human rights abuses, including the repression of women, minorities and all opposition forces. As the main defender of freedoms, the MEK quickly built up an expanding base of support across the Iranian population, especially among young people and intellectuals. In less than two years, MEK became the largest political movement in Iran.

Mek Political Platform

However, during these two years, Khomeini’s regime carried out a brutal and merciless crackdown that spared neither women, nor students, nor minorities. In the same period, Khomeini’s henchmen murdered 70 members and supporters of the MEK at peaceful rallies, meetings, and protests. The regime’s conduct in this period was deliberately deleted from all its state-published and affiliated media reports, including the Guardian article.

On June 20, 1981, the MEK tested Iran’s democratic environment a final time by launching a peaceful demonstration to remind the Khomeini regime of its responsibilities to respect the fundamental freedoms of the Iranian people. In Tehran, more than 500,000 attended. In response, Khomeini ordered the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), his personal army, to open fire on the unarmed and peaceful protesters.

The following day, the Iranian regime launched a ruthless crackdown against all opposition forces, especially the supporters and members of the MEK. The regime’s forces pursued and executed many of the Mojahedin’s members in the streets, and thousands were dragged into the regime’s prisons, where they were subjected to inhumane methods of torture and were later executed. Women, children, the elderly—no one was spared.

Following the ban of all opposition forces, the Khomeini regime executed and murdered some 120,000 people, most of whom were affiliated with the MEK. In Khomeini’s prisons, his guards and executioners resorted to the vilest and most brutal torture methods. Khomeini’s fatwas gave his torturers free rein to do anything they wanted to torment the MEK members and sympathizers, including rape, severing body organs, gouging eyes, and other deplorable and vile acts.

According to eyewitness accounts, the regime’s guards extracted blood from the MEK members before executing them, so they could use it for the medical needs of their own guards and soldiers. Pregnant women were tortured and executed. Young girls were raped before their execution. The imprisoned MEK members suffered a truly evil fate at the hands of the regime.

Under these circumstances, on July 21, 1981, a month after the beginning of Khomeini’s reign of terror, Massoud Rajavi founded the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), a coalition of Iran’s opposition forces that aspired to replace the violent brand of religious fascism promoted by Khomeini with a democratic, pluralist and secular state. A week later, on July 29, the leaders of the MEK left Iran with help from the brave and freedom-loving officers of the Iranian Air Force. Rajavi took refuge in France, from where he continued to lead the struggle for freedom against the Iranian regime.

Iran-Iraq War

The regime has massaged the narrative of the Iran-Iraq war to hide its war-mongering activities. In 1980, when the Iraqi army occupied parts of Iran, the MEK was quick to take up arms and defend their homeland.

But as soon as the Iraqi army released its hold on Iranian land and retreated back behind international borders, the continuation of the war was no longer justified and the MEK was also quick to call for peace between the two countries. Meanwhile, Khomeini insisted on continuing the war until and pushed for the overthrow of the Iraqi government. The Iran-Iraq war went on to cause the avoidable deaths of millions on both sides, while peace was totally achievable.

The war provided Khomeini with the perfect pretext to suppress the demands of the people. He used the excuse of being at war as a pretext to crack down on all the regime’s political opponents, accusing them of weakening the government and colluding with foreign enemies.

On September 10, 1982, Massoud Rajavi met with the then Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz at the NCRI’s Paris headquarters and signed a peace agreement with the Iraqi government on behalf of the MEK and the Iranian people. The move proved that peace was achievable and that the Iranian regime was prolonging the Iran-Iraq war against the wishes of the Iranian public.

The MEK’s peace effort gained international recognition and support and was endorsed by 5,000 politicians from 57 countries worldwide.

The rise of women in leadership roles in MEK

In the six years that followed the 1979 revolution, female members of the MEK were active in their resistance against the religious and misogynous rule of Khomeini.

 

Eventually, on March 10, 1985, women found their true place in the leadership ranks of the MEK when Maryam Azdanlou (Rajavi) became the co-leader of the MEK. The event marked a turning point in the history of the MEK in its struggle against the Khomeini’s fundamentalist ideology, which had been particularly harsh towards Iranian women.

It was the MEK’s conviction that if women were the primary victims of the Iranian regime, then they should be given a privileged status in the MEK’s ranks which stands opposed to the mullahs’ rule in every way. This illustrated the MEK’s genuine commitment to equality between women and men.

MEK relocated to Iraq

On June 7, 1986, under pressure from the French government, which was deeply engaged in dealings with the Iranian regime, Massoud Rajavi left France for Iraq. There he founded the National Liberation Army (NLA) on June 20, 1987. The NLA became a major force in opposition to the Iranian regime.

The Iraqi government in Baghdad agreed it would not interfere in the politics and operations of the MEK and its NLA. The MEK predicated its presence in Iraq would preserve its independence.

On July 25, 1988, the NLA launched its largest operation, called “Eternal Light,” in which it targeted the entirety of the Iranian regime. The Iranian regime suffered 55,000 casualties, and on its part, the NLA lost 1,304 of its officers and soldiers, heroes who laid down their lives for the freedom of their country. MEK members who returned alive were more determined than ever to bring freedom to their homeland, Iran. There was no sign of defeat and failure in the minds of those who survived.

Middle East analysts and observers attributed Khomenei’s acceptance of the ceasefire with Iraq in 1988 to the efforts of the NLA.

The massacre of MEK members and supporters in Iran’s prisons

In the summer of 1988, the Iranian regime began a mass purge of its prisons from political prisoners, executing anyone who refused to repent for their opposition to the rule of Khomeini.

Families of Victims of 1988 Massacre Still Seek Justice

In the span of a few months, the regime’s executioners sent more than 30,000 prisoners to the gallows. This was a genocide, a crime against humanity without precedent, which became known as the “1988 massacre.”

Contrary to what has been said by regime mouthpieces in the demonization campaigns against the MEK, it was later revealed in summer 2016 in an audio tape of Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, the heir-apparent to Khomeini, that the regime leadership extensively planned the massacre.  Plans for the 1988 massacre began months earlier, as Khomeini became worried of the future of his regime and his tenuous hold on power and it was not the result of the MEK’s largest operation.

The 1990s and 2000s: The policy of appeasement

During the 1990s, western states engaged in a new drive of rapprochement towards the Iranian regime, hoping they could preserve their economic interests and avoid the obvious threats emanating from Tehran. Naturally, it was the Iranian people and the MEK that paid the price of this failed policy.

In 1997, the US administration, under the presidency of Bill Clinton, inserted the MEK into its list of foreign terrorist organizations (FTO) as a goodwill gesture to Mohammad Khatami, the newly appointed president of the Iranian regime, who presented himself as a “moderate” and “reformist.”

European states followed suit and classified the MEK as a terrorist organization in an effort spearheaded by Jack Straw, then-foreign minister of the United Kingdom. Straw was known for his endorsement a policy of appeasement towards the Iranian regime, an attitude that made him the object of much criticism from the Iranian people inside Iran and abroad. Canada and Australia also soon followed the UK’s lead.

The adoption of a policy of appeasement triggered a wave pressure against the MEK and the Iranian resistance, resulting in the suffering and deaths of many innocent people. The bombing of MEK camps in Iraq during the 2003 US-Iraq conflict, the coup-d’état of July 17, 2003, against NCRI headquarters in France, and the numerous raids and rocket attacks against MEK camps in Iraq were just some of the results of that policy of appeasement.

Having been through many trials and ordeals during their decades-long history, the MEK was not intimidated by the show of power of the Iranian regime and its foreign cohorts. MEK’s victory in getting the organization removed from terror lists or, better put, the victory of justice and truth was the end result of the MEK’s engagement in a legal battle that lasted more than 15 years.

In 2009, the European Union removed the MEK from its list of terrorist organizations. In the years that followed, the US judiciary declared that the MEK had been wrongly designated as a terrorist group, and in 2012, the US State Department removed the label. Canada and Australia also removed the MEK from their lists shortly after the US.

Camp Ashraf and MEK’s relocation to Albania

Camp Ashraf, situated 77 kilometers north of Baghdad, was home to thousands of MEK members for 25 years. Prior to the 2003 US-led war in Iraq, the MEK publicly declared its neutrality and played no part in the ensuing conflict. However, exploiting the post-invasion atmosphere in Iraq, the Iranian regime did its utmost to destroy and demonize the MEK.

Three massacres at Camp Ashraf, five missile attacks on Camp Liberty, two cases of abduction of residents, and the imposition of an eight-year siege, which left 177 residents dead, constituted parts of this inhumane, albeit futile, plan.

The regime’s enormous efforts to create rifts among the ranks of the also MEK failed. Foreigners were astounded at the high morale in Camp Ashraf. Such a level of liveliness under such difficult conditions came from the depth of the residents’ profound belief in freedom.

The main entrance to Camp Ashraf – Iraq, the former residence of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK / PMOI)

During all those years, Ashraf residents enjoyed excellent relations with the communities and people of surrounding towns and villages in Diyala province of Iraq.

Ashraf also invested heavily in infrastructure projects in the region. A water purification plant provided water to tens of thousands of people in surrounding towns. Local Iraqi residents were welcome at Ashraf medical clinics. A new electricity grid and roads benefited the entire region.

Some 5.2 million Iraqis signed a petition in June 2006 warning of the Iranian regime’s dangers in Iraq and describing the MEK as the main bulwark against the regime’s interventions. More than 3 million Iraqi Shiites signed a declaration in June 2008 calling for the eviction of the regime and its agents from Iraq and the removal of restrictions imposed on MEK members residing in Ashraf City.

The Iranian regime launched a campaign to have the MEK dismantled but it ultimately due to the skill and competence of Camp Ashraf’s leaders, of which the large majority were women.

This explains why female members of the MEK were extensively targeted by the Iranian regime’s propaganda machine, including in the recent Guardian article. The mullahs attack the MEK’s women using fake stories featuring a host of female defectors. All the fake stories about women being abused in the MEK and being held against their will are nothing but the mullahs’ lies and propaganda without a shred of truth.

Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian opposition, addresses the MEK members after their relocation to Albania- October 2017

In 2016, while the Iranian regime and its Iraqi proxies were trying to exterminate the MEK in Iraq, an international effort led by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the NCRI, succeeded in relocating all members of the organization to Albania. The event was a major achievement for the MEK, whose members could now intensify their efforts in leading the struggle for freedom in Iran. It was a major defeat for the Iranian regime, whose existence depended on destroying its main opposition.

The Iranian regime now finds itself in a dangerous position. It has started losing its international supporters while the networks of MEK supporters and activists continue to expand inside Iran. The MEK’s resistance units play a major role in keeping the flame of resistance alit and preventing the regime from suffocating the voice of protesters.

As a result, the protests continue in every city and corner of Iran, and protesters are calling for the overthrow of the Iranian regime, a goal that the MEK has been striving for since 1981. As the mullahs’ regime inches towards its inevitable collapse, the MEK, which has been through countless trials and tribulations, thrives and aims to fulfill the dreams of the Iranian people.

Staff Writer

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Isfahan farmers protest their rights to water

Iran’s Farmers Suffer from Regime’s Mismanagement

Isfahan farmers protest their rights to water

Isfahan farmers in a sit-in demanding their water rights. Dressed in white, they symbolize their readiness to sacrifice their lives in order to obtain their water right.

Iran is facing a water crisis that affects people in provinces across the country and shows no signs of improving. The MEK previously referred to the water crisis as one of Iran’s super challenges, and it is one of the many problems facing the country that has resulted from the mullahs’ corruption and mismanagement of Iran’s wealth.

People in Iran’s central and southern provinces and the southeastern province of Sistan and Baluchestan have been the hardest hit by the water crisis.

Isfahan Province, in southern Iran, has been affected the most deeply by water shortages. The province’s primary industry is agriculture, and farmers in the region no longer have water to irrigate their crops, due to the drying of the Zayanderud River, Iran’s largest river. The Zayanderud used to provide a plentiful water source to the farmers of Isfahan. Then the IRGC began building factories upstream of Isfahan and diverting water from the river to support their regime-supported businesses. The once-prosperous Isfahan farmers were left without water to irrigate their crops or a means to support their livelihoods.

Virtually everyone in Isfahan relies on agriculture for their livelihood. In the Khorasgan district of Isfahan, the overwhelming majority of the district’s 300,000 residents support themselves through agriculture. The loss of water rights has led to a series of anti-regime protests and demonstrations over the past year. The same is true across Isfahan Province.

In the past, the regime has made promises to address the concerns of the farmers, but little to nothing has actually been done to follow through with these promises. At one point, the regime offered to pay the farmers a portion of the damages they have sustained in order to end their protests. The offer was so insulting it led to more protests.

According to the state-run ILNA news agency: “What has further enraged the farmers is the proposition to pay 5 million rials in exchange for 14-15 months of not having been able to plant anything.” The proposition amounted to approximately $50 for a year’s worth of damages caused by the regime’s policies.

Esfandiar Amini, the executive secretary of Isfahan’s agriculture organization, told ILNA, “The recent actions by authorities has enraged the farmers. This decision made them feel as if they’re being toyed with.”

Isfahan’s farmers responded to the regime’s offer with demonstrations. After the proposition was made, more than 700 farmers from East Isfahan staged protests against water scarcity and the loss of their water rights. The farmers wore grave shrouds to symbolize that they would go to any lengths to have their demands met. Farmers in the town of Jareh gathered at the Mahdieh mosque to protest, while other farmers in Isfahan lined up their tractors and protested in grave shrouds. One farmer was quoted by MEK sources as saying, “We farmers of Isfahan have been crushed under the feet [of Iranian authorities]. We rose to claim our rights to water. We will not go back to our homes. The water of Zayanderud is our most legitimate right. 75 percent of the water of Zayanderud should be allocated to farming purposes.”

The farmers of Isfahan are protesting for the right to do their work and for the fundamental human right to access water. The fact that they have spent months protesting for water rights points to the larger issue facing the Iranian people. the mullahs have brought Iran to the brink of collapse through their corruption and mismanagement of the country’s resources, and they have neither the will nor the ability to address the problems they have created.

The farmers of Isfahan have gained widespread support for their protests, and many other sectors of Iranian society have also joined the ongoing nationwide strikes and protests that began almost a year ago. It has become abundantly clear that the regime is failing the Iranian people and that a change is necessary. The people are ready to control their own destinies.

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Albanian Parliamentary delegation meet with Maryam Rajavi

Maryam Rajavi Meets with Albania MEPs

Albanian Parliamentary delegation meet with Maryam Rajavi

An Albanian Parliamentary delegation, lead by Deputy Chairman of the Parliament Edi Paloka, met with Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian opposition-December 4, 2018

On Tuesday, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), met with a delegation from the Albanian parliament outside of Tirana. The delegation was led by Edi Paloka, Deputy Chair of Albanian Parliament. Other members of the parliamentary delegation included Mr. Edmond Spaho, Mr. Endri Hasa, Mr. Xhemal Gjunkshi, Ms. Grida Duma, and Ms. Valentina Duka.

The delegation met with Mrs. Rajavi to hold talks about the Ashraf 3, the MEK camp in Albania, and to discuss the anti-regime protests and strikes currently taking place in Iran.

During the meeting, Deputy Chairman Paloka said, “Not only we in the parliament but all the people of Albania are happy with the presence of the PMOI in this country.”

Grida Duma reiterated this point, saying, “It is a pleasure for us to welcome you and say that all of us in Albania support your presence here because you represent the values of freedom and democracy. You have revived the original humanitarian principles of Islam and stood up to religious coercion.”

Edmond Spaho described reasons why the MEK has gained support from the international community: “Your courage, resolve and perseverance is a historical example and this is why international support for your resistance grows by the day.”

Valentina Duka thanked Mrs. Rajavi and the MEK “for all the good work you have done for Iran’s freedom and particularly for women’s rights.”

Endri Hasa said, “We actively support your movement,” noting that he follows news of the Iranian uprisings.

Xhemal Gjunkshi also expressed his support of Mrs. Rajavi and the MEK, saying, “My colleagues and I support you and we wish that you succeed in reaching your ultimate goal which is Iran’s freedom.”

Mrs. Rajavi welcomed the delegation of Albanian MPs and thanked the Albanian parliament, noting that the MEK had received strong support from the ruling party as well as the opposition parties. Rajavi emphasized, “Demonstrations and protests by various social strata have been continuing and expanding. Although Iran is a rich country, the majority of the people of Iran today live below the poverty line, and unemployment, inflation, and corruption are rampant. So, the people of Iran are determined to put an end to this situation and achieve their freedom.”

Mrs. Rajavi closed the meeting by expressing her hope that the ultimate victory of the Iranian Resistance would bring an end to the mullahs’ terrorist acts and hostility and usher in a new era in the relationship between Iran and Albania.

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Iran human rights,Iran Protests,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),PMOI,Student's Day

Student's day protests in various universities in Iran

MEK-Iran: Students Protests Spread Ahead of Iran’s National Student Day

Student's day protests in various universities in Iran

Students day protests in Iran- December 2018

Iranian students turned out on Tuesday, December 4th in a strong gesture of solidarity with their jailed peers and teachers, as well as the striking steelworkers and sugar cane workers that have mounted protests of their own in recent weeks.

The protests came just days before Iran’s annual Student Day, which also marks the anniversary of the 1953 murder of three students at the hands of the Shah’s violent police force.

Students gathered at Tehran’s Amirkabir University of Technology turnout in force, chanting powerful slogans and forming a human chain as a visual representation of the shackles repressing the Iranian workforce and a gesture of unity with their jailed students and teachers.

The students changed anti-regime slogans like, “victory is near! Down with this deceptive government”.

Jailed Students and Teachers

The student protest explicitly called for the release of jailed Iranian students and teachers. Mohammad Habibi was a teacher recently completed a 10-year sentence for his educational activist activities, however, he has not been released from prison.

The students are also calling for the immediate release of two workers recently arrested during the protests undertaken by the workers of the Haft Tappeh sugarcane factory.

Esmail Bakhshi and Ali Nejati were both detained by regime authorities during the recent strikes. The People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) reported that Bakhshi was reportedly tortured whilst in regime custody, suffering injuries so extensive, he needed hospital treatment.

A Labour Activist Involved in the Haft Tappeh Protests is Hospitalized After Suffering Abuse in Regime Custody

Stoking Regime Fears

The student protest stoked regime fears that dissent and civil unrest could spread, leading to further anti-regime demonstrations across Iran similar to those seen in December and January.

In an attempt to prevent the protest from spreading, the regime sent plainclothes agents to deal with the protestors. Among videos circulating online of the protests is one where the regime’s agents appear to resort to violent strategies to contain the protest, clearly injuring one protestor at the scene.

Protests Spreading

The regime’s fears were justified. The protests have already spread among Iran’s youth and other universities and student bodies have joined the movement.

In Northern Iran, students at Nowshirvani University turned out to protest government incompetence, regime oppression, and poor living conditions. They held anti-regime signs reading, “stop the crackdown against students”, and “students will not live in shame”.

In Tabriz, students also protested. There were also reports of students protesting in Ahvaz, the site of the recent steelworkers’ protests. The students joined the brave workers of the National Steel Group in a display of support in their crusade against unpaid wages, corrupt management and the arrest of their own fellow workers.

The student movement and the workers’ movements have many parallels. Both are facing regime suppression and corruption. Both have colleagues sitting behind bars due to arbitrary arrests, and both want to see regime change usher in a new dawn for Iran.

President-elect of the Iranian opposition, Maryam Rajavi, has lent her support for both movements and called on the international community to lend assistance and support wherever they can to Iran’s protesting students and workers.

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