Posts Tagged ‘IRGC’

Assadollah Assadi,Iran Diplomat Terrorist,Iran Terrorism,IRGC,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI

Iranian regime's terrorist activities abroad

The Iranian Regime’s International Web of Terror and Violence Serves to Divert Attention Away from Its Domestic Crisis

Iranian regime's terrorist activities abroad

Photo Credit to Washington Times: Top IRGC commanders plotted on the front line in the northern province of Aleppo, Syria.The Iranian backed invasion that left thousands of civilians killed and tens of thousands displaced.

A report from The Washington Times on Sunday, October 21st, drew public attention to the Iranian regime’s terrorist cells operating under the guise of diplomatic outposts.

The piece by Rowan Scarborough, entitled “Iranian Terrorists Lurk Abroad in Guise of Diplomats, Dissidents Report”, discussed the regime’s activities in places like Austria, Iraq, and Albania, where Iranian embassies have become hotbeds for terrorist activities.

The article referred to a report from the Iranian National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) which explored the Iranian regime’s state-sponsored terrorism in Europe as well as its meddling in conflicts in the Middle East.

Diverting Attention Away from Domestic Crisis

The piece suggests that the mullahs may be using terrorism as a means of diverting the Iranian public’s attention away from the escalating crisis within Iran. The NCRI report states that the “regime has funneled billions of dollars to finance its belligerent war agenda in the Middle East while the majority of Iran’s people are living in poverty”.

“If the regime fails to inflame wars outside Iran’s borders”, it continued, “it [the regime] would have to fight for survival in Iran’s borders”.

The Iranian regime has supported terrorist organizations across the Middle East, including Hezbollah. Its fingerprints are on every major conflict in the region, including the civil war in Syria, and the war in Yemen.

In Syria, the regime-affiliated Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) have a presence of over 100,000 troops. They are working with Assad’s forces, who have received credible accusations of using chemical weapons against the civilian population to retain power.

The NCRI estimates that the mullahs may have contributed as much as $100 billion to Assad’s campaign in Syria. The money was likely spent on constructing field bases, paying Syrian troops, and purchasing Russian weapons.

In Iraq, the Iranian ambassador, Iraj Masjedi, controls several prominent Shia militia groups. It is estimated he controls more than 100,000 troops in the country and is likely an active part of the anti-American forces working within the country.

There are also signs that the Iranian regime is working to extend its influence in Iraq. Major General Qassem Soleimani, commander of the IRGC, has made several visits to the country, the most recent of which is believed to have been in August.

“He is trying to threaten and intimidate various parties and groups to secure a larger share of power for the Iranian regime”, the NCRI report states.

A Web of Violence and Terror

In Europe, there are similar signs of regime-sponsored violence. In June, Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian diplomat based in the Iranian embassy in Austria was detained by European authorities.

The explosive’s expert was arrested for his role in a foiled terror attack against the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) in Paris. The diplomat turned terrorist provided a Belgian-Iranian couple with homemade explosives with instructions of how to carry out the planned car bombing at the MEK’s annual Grand Gathering.

A German court has since approved Assadi’s extradition to Belgium, where he will face charges over the allegations.

The Washington Times article reports that: Gholamhossein Mohammadnia, the Iranian ambassador to Albania, also has extensive links to the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS). Albania is of particular importance to the clerical regime. It is the home of the MEK, the Iranian opposition group living in exile.

Since the MEK fled to Albania, the Iranian regime has bolstered its small embassy in the country into “one of the most important Iranian embassies in Europe”.

The Washington Times article wrote that further up the chain of command is Reza Amiri Moghadam. The NCRI reports that MOIS agents from across Europe report to Moghadam in Tehran. “He is the key figure for the regime’s terrorist operations outside Iran, particularly in Europe and the US”, an NCRI report said.

London NCRI Press Conference Reveals New Information About the Regime’s Terror Activities

The Iranian resistance and their allies must condemn the regime’s destabilizing efforts across the globe while ensuring its actions do not divert attention from the domestic crisis in Iran. Only then can it oppose the regime’s violence, without furthering its domestic goals.

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Child soldiers,Iran human rights,Iran Terrorism,IRGC,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),PMOI

Iran uses child-soldiers vastly in Syrian fronts

U.S. Sanctions Iranian Financial Institutions, Regime’s Use of Child Soldiers

Iran uses child-soldiers vastly in Syrian fronts

Child – Soldiers are being used by the Iranian regime on Syria’s war fronts.

Heather Nauert, Spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State, recently tweeted about some of the new sanctions targeting the Iranian regime’s financial institutions. In an October 16th tweet from her official State Department account, she wrote:

“U.S. Treasury sanctioned a vast financial network supporting the Iran regime’s despicable practice of using child soldiers —as young as 12. The regime uses Afghan children as the ‘first wave’ in Syria, resulting in higher casualty rates.”

The United States imposed sanctions on a network of financial institutions and companies who do business with or otherwise provide support to the Iranian regime’s paramilitary Basij force, citing gross human rights abuses and criminal acts.

The sanctions, which were imposed by the U.S. Treasury Department, encompass twenty regime banks and companies. According to a report from Agence France-Presse, all of these banks and businesses were sanctioned for their support of the regime’s militias.

A Far-reaching Web

Among the list of sanctioned institutions is Mehr Eqtesad Bank, which used to operate under the name of Gharz-al Hasana Mehr Basijian. Mehr Eqtesad Bank is associated with Bonyad-e Taavon Basij, which translates to Basij Cooperative Foundation. This bank’s ties to the Basij Forces can literally be found in the names of its associates.

Mehr Eqtesad Iranian Investment Company also faces sanctions from the U.S. It owns shares in Mobarakeh Steel Company in Esfahan, which is the largest steelmaker in the Middle East and North Africa. The company also owns shares in Iran Tractor Manufacturing Company (ITMC), which is also a target of the new sanctions.

Mehr Eqtesad may harm other Iranian regime-affiliated companies as well. It owns shares in a number of other companies, including Iralco, Sadra, Jaber Ebne Hayyan Pharmaceutical Company. U.S. sanctions could affect any company associated with an institution that is targeted, meaning that a wide network of Iranian companies will likely face harsh economic penalties for their association with those who are under direct sanctions. Sanctions on Mehr Eqtesad Iranian Investment Company are likely to further damage Iran’s already struggling economy.

The U.S. Won’t Fund Recruitment of Child Soldiers

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin says that sanctions are necessary to cut off financial support for institutions that fund the Basij in their recruitment of child soldiers.

“The Bonyad Taavon Basij network is an example of how the IRGC and Iranian military forces have expanded their economic involvement in major industries and infiltrated seemingly legitimate businesses to fund terrorism and other malign activities.  This vast network provides financial infrastructure to the Basij’s efforts to recruit, train, and indoctrinate child soldiers who are coerced into combat under the IRGC’s direction,” Mnuchin explained.

Protests among many sectors of Iranian society have been taking place since last December as dissatisfaction with the corrupt and brutal regime rises. Economic ruin has driven thousands of Iranians into the streets to protest even before sanctions were announced earlier this year with the help of the MEK’s Resistance Units and a growing sense of outrage over the regime’s failure to address human rights, poverty, or foreign meddling, the people are close to reclaiming Iran.

Companies Under Sanction

The following is a list of companies that have been subjected to new sanctions by the U.S. Treasury Department:

  • Andisheh Mehvaran Investment Company
  • Bahman Group
  • Bandar Abbas Zinc Production Company
  • Mellat Bank
  • Bonyad Taavon Basij,
  • Calcimine company
  • Isfahan’s Mobarakeh Steel Company
  • Iran Tractor Manufacturing Company (ITMC)
  • Iran’s Zinc Mines Development Company (IZMDC)
  • Mehr Eghtesad Bank
  • Mehr Eqtesad Iranian Investment Company
  • Negin Sahel Royal Company
  • Parsian Bank
  • Parsian Catalyst Chemical Company
  • Qeshm Zinc Smelting and Reduction Company
  • Sina Bank
  • Tadbirgaran Atiyeh Investment Company
  • Taktar Investment Company
  • Technostar Engineering Company
  • Zanjan Acid Production Company

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Khamenei speaks to the Basij - October 2018

Khamenei Attempts to Boost Morale in Speech to Basijis

Khamenei speaks to the Basij - October 2018

Iranian regime’s dictator, Ali Khamenei addresses his local security forces, the Basisj-October 2018

On Thursday, regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei spoke to a gathering of Basij (Regime’s main repressive force in dealing with protests in Iran) from across Iran. The speech was intended to boost morale among the Basijis and bolster their confidence in the faltering regime as the deadline for the second round of U.S. sanctions grows near.

Khamenei addressed those within the regime’s ranks who believe that the U.S. sanctions are so detrimental to Iran that the regime has no choice but to reconcile with the United States. “I explicitly declare that they are betraying,” Khamenei said. “This is the biggest betrayal and as long as I am alive, I will not let this happen in the country.”

Khamenei called on the Basijis to fail the sanctions and to slam the United States.

The Supreme Leader went on to discuss the various crises that are currently threatening the stability of the regime and the well-being of its people. He acknowledged the economic catastrophe facing Iran, describing it as a “shortage of livelihoods for a large part of the population.”

IRGC and Basij Repressive Forces Posed as “Inspirational”!

Khamenei then characterized the widely loathed Basij Force as “a true image of the country” and “inspirational” to others, adding that the Basij and the Revolutionary Guards should fire freely whenever it was necessary.

The Supreme Leader made reference to his own fears that the United States would overthrow the regime, saying: “The President of the United States has told some European leaders that you wait two-three months, after two, three months, the Islamic Republic will be thrown off.” He then confirmed that the survival of the Iranian regime depends upon meddling in the region and nuclear weapons testing and that the regime would fight to continue to do both. “These are also elements of our power. So the battlefield is here, the battlefield, the field of confrontation of arrogance with Islamic Iran, is all that is the cause of the Islamic Iran’s power … This is one of the areas of conflict,” Khamenei said.

Although he acknowledged his fears about “fatigue, destitution and disability” of regime officials and the widespread defection of mercenaries, Khamenei confidently told the Basijis, “Our growth is superior to our defections.”

Khamenei addressed the dissenters within his own regime, calling them “easy-hearted, insincere and hypocrite intellectuals,” and “disheartened, demoralized, cowardly, opportunistic, self-defeating …. hopeless and lazy people,”  who, “if not the agent of the enemy, are not nevertheless men of the field to the country’s progress” and produce “corruption and disagreement.”

Khamenei referred to the free press, the Internet, and social media as the enemy and the equivalent of chemical weapons. He discussed the media’s continuous revelations of the regime’s corruption and crime, saying: “With the very dangerous means of the media … by trying to portray a fake image, they try to distract the thoughts of the Iranian people.” The regime banned the social messaging app Telegram earlier this year in an attempt to prevent it from being used by MEK activists to spread the news about the regime and information about upcoming protests and demonstrations. The ban was ineffective.

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MEK supporters protest against the criminal execution of

MEK: Iranian Regime Executes Three Kurdish Political Prisoners And Missile Attacks DPK

MEK supporters protest against the criminal execution of

Iranian opposition Supporters (MEK activists) protest in Paris, condemning Iranian regime’s execution of the three political prisoners and the criminal missile attack on the Democratic Party of Kurdistan

Human rights groups are condemning the Iranian regime for its recent inhuman use of the death penalty on the Kurdish political prisoners. Kurdish dissidents have long been targeted by the regime, but the recent wave of executions is so extreme that it has drawn international attention.

Executions of Kurdish Political Prisoners

On Saturday, September 8th, Ramin Hossein Panahi, Zaniar and Loghman Moradi were executed in Gohardasht in Karaj. As the three men were Kurdish political prisoners, a number of human rights groups have condemned their executions as politically motivated.

Amnesty International issued a statement about the executions, saying:

“The trials of all three men were grossly unfair. All were denied access to their lawyers and families after their arrest, and all said they were tortured into making ‘confessions.’ In sentencing them to death despite these massive failings in due process, the Iranian authorities have once again demonstrated their brazen disregard for the right to life.”
The U.N. Special Rapporteur on Extra-Judicial Executions, Agnes Callamard, also condemned the executions, writing on Twitter:

“No words of condemnation will be strong enough. #RaminHosseinPanahi execution amounts to an arbitrary killing by the State of #Iran. Given the identity of the victim, this is also a political killing. Despicable.”

Also on Sunday, September 9th, Ahmad Shabab and Nasser Azizi were executed in Iran after being wounded and captured by the Revolutionary Guards in West Azerbaijan province, reported Iran News Wire.

Kurdish Political Prisoner Sentenced to Death

On Monday, September 10th, Kamal Ahmad Nejad was condemned to death by regime judicial authorities in Miyandoab, Western Azerbaijan. According to reports published on the Internet, Nejad was convicted of charges of membership in the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran. Kamal Ahmal Nejad has already served more than four years in prison.

Regime Claims Responsibility for Attacks on Kurdish Dissidents

On Saturday, September 8th, the Iranian regime targeted Kurdish dissidents in Iraq in a missile attack that coincided with the executions of Kurdish political prisoners in Iran. The Revolutionary Guards fired a barrage of missiles upon the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) site.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, condemned the missile attacks, saying:

“The mullahs’ anti-human regime is hell-bent on stepping up the atmosphere of terror and repression to extinguish the Iranian people’s uprising through suppression, executions, bombardment and missile attacks. But it will take that wish to the grave.”

The MEK affirms the right of people of all political and religious affiliations to live without fear. The MEK and its Resistance Units are working with the Iranian people to topple the barbaric regime and end the climate of fear and intimidation that the mullahs have used for the past four decades to suppress the people.

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1000 Protesters arrested during recent uprisings.

Iranian Opposition Calls for Release of One Thousand Protesters Arrested during August Uprising

1000 Protesters arrested during recent uprisings.

Reports by MEK network indicate that at least one thousand protesters were arrested during the recent uprising.

Recent reports from inside Iran revealed that at least one thousand protesters, including many young people and MEK members, were arrested during the uprising in August. Regime Minister of Interior Abdol-Reza Rahmani-Fazli said that the uprising involved 27 cities and 13 provinces. Protesters were arrested in many cities, such as

Yazd, Behshahr, Birjand, and Ganaveh. Many of those who were arrested and released on bail were later arrested again and sentenced to lengthy prison terms for their participation in the protests.

The arrests were primarily conducted by plainclothes officers working for the Revolutionary Guards and Khamenei. The officers secretly took pictures and videos of the protesters while posing as demonstrators, then arrested their targets away from the site of the protests or even at their homes. In Karaj, plainclothes officers diverted protesters to alleys and side streets by chanting slogans and then arrested them.

Some of the detainees were transported to secret safe houses, where they were interrogated and harassed by IRGC agents before being transferred to Iranian prisons.

Many of those who were arrested in Karaj and Tehran were transferred to the infamous Ward 8 of

Gohardasht Prison. Prisoners in Ward 8 are subject to extreme conditions and have no way of contacting anyone outside of the prison. Guards in Ward 8 are not subject to the same rules as in other wards and are not part of the Iran Prisons Organization. Detainees are blindfolded before being transferred to this ward so that they do not know their location.

As the uprising gained momentum in August, officials within the regime began to openly speak of their fear of the MEK, speaking with anger about the MEK’s role in the protests. Mohammad Kosari, Deputy Commander of the IRGC’s headquarters in Sarallah, said, “The United States, the Zionist regime and the Saudis, who support the PMOI (MEK), are under the illusion that the PMOI would bring a miracle for them.”

The state-run television network Channel One said, “A study of the movements during recent months show that the MEK’s  bankrupt elements are the infantry in this scenario.”

The Iranian opposition calls upon the Iranian people to show solidarity with those who have been arrested by the regime. The youth of Iran, in particular, are called to stand with those who sit in the mullahs’ prisons for the crime of speaking against the regime. The Resistance also calls upon the United Nations Security Council, the Human Rights Council, and other relevant bodies to take immediate action to release all political prisoners, especially those who were arrested during the August uprising. The Resistance further calls upon the United Nations to condemn the Iranian regime for its brutal suppression of the people’s protests.

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IRGC Basij forces cracking down on Iran protesters

Regime Responds to MEK Resistance Unit with Increased Patrols

IRGC Basij forces cracking down on Iran protesters

The Iranian regime is increasing its efforts to crack down on MEK activists who are the main force behind Iran protests

The Revolutionary Guards’ Basij Force is responding to the growth of MEK resistance units in cities across Iran with an increase in patrols. Resistance units have proved to be very effective in organizing protests against the clerical regime, and as word of their success has spread and their numbers have grown, the regime and its officials have become increasingly fearful of the MEK and the Iranian opposition movement as a whole. As a result, the IRGC’s Basij Force has stepped up its suppressive efforts.

Gholam-Hossein Gheibparvar, a commander of the IRGC’s Basij Force, recently announced that his forces will soon begin conducting new drills. Gheibparvar said that the Bassij Force had been conducting patrols in neighborhoods for the last seven or eight months and had set up protection for checkpoints. This was an acknowledgment of the public concern about checkpoints in neighborhoods.

“We have begun a series of plans to upgrade the IRGC Basij,” he said. “We have not rounded up our patrols and we believe our patrols are more effective than checkpoints. More recently, these Bassij patrols have been dubbed as the Razavioun network.”

Gheibparvar noted that the primary purpose of the Basij patrols is “to provide security.” He also states that the Basij Force is implementing a new initiative as well, a program they are calling the “Service & Security Epic.”

Gheibparvar’s words make it clear that the purpose of the Basij patrols is to suppress the ongoing protest movement and to place Basij spies within neighborhoods to identify activists within the Iranian Resistance.

The commander’s words also underscore the regime’s fear of the increasing protest activity taking place in cities across Iran. The prospect of another uprising like the one that took place in late December and early January and spread to more than 140 cities across Iran terrifies the regime leadership because they are all too aware that such an uprising is not only possible but imminent.

The IRGC and Basij Force played a large role in the suppression of the December/January uprising, which came after nearly two weeks of massive protests across Iran. Over 50 protesters were killed in the suppression of the uprising and at least 8,000 people were arrested.

The regime has used neighborhood patrols in the past to control and suppress the people. IRGC commander Mohammad Ali Jafari claimed that the patrols are a “service to the people,” adding that “wherever there is a problem (for the regime) the Basij will be focusing on that issue.”

On Iranian social media, people are comparing these plans to the ones implemented by the regime in the 1980s to suppress the MEK. The MEK, it should be noted, is still a thriving organization, which the regime continues to fight using the same ineffective measures that failed in the ‘80s.

Despite the regime’s many efforts to suppress all opposition, the MEK continues to expand its network inside Iran through the formation of resistance units in cities throughout the country. The regime is aware of the Resistance and is rightfully afraid, but it cannot stop the wave of change that is sweeping the country.

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Demonization Camapaign against MEK,IRGC,MEK,MOIS,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI

NCRIUS debunks propaganda piece against MEK

Regime Representatives Discuss Strategies for MEK, Diplomat Terrorists, and Dejected Diplomats at Annual Gathering

NCRIUS debunks propaganda piece against MEK

Richard Engel’s piece published at MSNBC-A propaganda piece against Iran opposition, debunked by NCRIUS

In the last week of July, ambassadors and representatives from the Iranian regime held their annual gathering in Tehran. According to reports from inside the regime, the primary subjects of this year’s gathering were the diplomat terrorist who was arrested in Germany, strategies for confronting the Iranian resistance at the International level, and ways to increase morale among diplomats and prevent them from defecting.

Khamenei, Rouhani, Jahangiri and Zarif were present as usual, but this year they were joined by

Qods Force commander Soleimani, Minister of Intelligence Mahmoud Alavi, Interior Minister Rahmani Fazli, Speaker of the Majlis Ali Larijani, Head of the Judiciary Sadeq Larijani, Khamenei Advisor Ali Akbar Velayati, Defense Minister Amir Hatami, Head of the Atomic Energy Organization Ali Akbar Salehi, Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Abbas Salehi, Chairman of the Organization of Islamic Culture and Communication Abouzar Ebrahimi Turkman, and a number of other leaders of the regime, who all participated and gave speeches.

One goal of the gathering was to coordinate between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Intelligence, the Qods Force, and the various agencies involved in espionage and the demonization campaign against the MEK and the Iranian Resistance. The agencies hope to pave the way for terrorist acts against the MEK and the Resistance.

 

There was some concern by overseas representatives of the regime about the response of foreign governments and media to the arrest of a regime diplomat for a “serious terrorist act” and “flagrant violation of the Vienna Convention.” These representatives were briefed by Alavi and Zarif on ways to “deal with Assadi’s case” using

psychological warfare and the pumping of false information.” They added that past and future acts against the hypocrites (MEK) must be made digestible. To further this end, representatives of the regime were ordered to reactivate their relationships with the intelligence and security divisions of their host countries.

 

An internal report by the IRGC stated that a strikes against the MEK are “in the political, military, security and intelligence priority of the regime,” and targeting members, while they are traveling, is on their agenda. According to an August 17th statement by the Anti-terrorism Committee, the Ministry of Intelligence and the Qods Force were ordered to consider terrorist acts against the MEK using non-Iranian mercenaries.

 

Also discussed at the meetings was the coordination of the Foreign Ministry and foreign representative offices with the IRGC and the Quds Force in terrorist and warring interventions in the region, including Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. Overseas representatives were instructed on how to justify these actions to the government, parliament, parties and the press.

 

Finally, regime leaders attempted to reassure the diplomats, who have grown increasingly concerned about the uprising of the Iranian people and the sanctions have been reimposed. The regime’s Supreme Security Council is worried that its representatives may leave to seek asylum in European countries.

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Amnesty International,Iran Protests,IRGC,MEK,Reza outadi

Reza Outadi a protester who was shot dead by Iranian regime security forces in Karaj

Amnesty International to Iranian Regime: Release all Protesters

 

Reza Outadi a protester who was shot dead by Iranian regime security forces in Karaj

Reza Outadi, shot dead by Iranian regime security forces during peaceful demonstrations in Karaj-August 2018

Amnesty International has called upon Iranian authorities to release those who have been arrested solely for taking part in the protests. In an August 8th letter, Amnesty International also called for the authorities to conduct a prompt, impartial, and independent investigation into the shooting of Reza Outadi, a protester in Karaj who was killed on August 3, 2018.

The Iranian regime has responded to the spread protests and demonstrations across the country over the past week, with violent suppression and widespread arrests based on reports from MEK network inside Iran.

The letter from Amnesty International also urged authorities to protect those who have been detained from torture and other poor treatment and to reveal the location and dates of the dozens of detainees whose status has been unknown since their arrests.

Among those detained by the regime is Human Rights Defender Nader Afshari. He was arrested by Ministry of Intelligence Services (MOIS) agents in Karaj on August 1, 2018. He is believed to be held in a secret facility, but his exact whereabouts are unknown.

Amnesty International has expressed concern about reports that detainees who have been taken to Evin prison, Shahr-e Rey prison, and Fashafouyeh prison have not been given much if any access to their families or attorneys.

Protests began on July 31st in response to the rapid decrease in value of the rial and quickly spread across Iran. Deep dissatisfaction with the regime and its policies caused the protests to shift rapidly from economic matters to calls for regime change. The MEK network inside Iran reported chants of “Death to Khamenei!” and “Death to the the dictator!” in cities across Iran.

The regime responded to the protests with violent suppression, injuring dozens of people in the process. Videos taken during the protests and shared on social media show crowds of people running from the sound of gunfire.

Reza Outadi was a 26-year-old man who went to a protest in Karaj on August 3rd and was shot to death. The regime’s Prosecutor General of Karaj said that Outadi was “killed by gunfire that came from protesters amidst the rioting that took place” in Karaj. He claimed that Outadi was “shot in the back and killed.” He further claimed that security forces were also injured as a result of being shot, stabbed, and hit with stones. Reports from the MEK network in Iran say that Outadi was shot by security forces who fired into a crowd of unarmed protesters. During last December protests, at least 50 protesters were slain by repressive security forces, some under torture, while the regime authorities had claimed they had committed suicide!

The Fars News reported on August 7th that the regime’s Prosecutor General of Karaj announced that a special unit was to be set up to investigate Reza Outadi’s death.

Amnesty International has expressed concern that the regime’s special unit does not meet the standards of impartiality and independence required under international law. Amnesty urges Iranian authorities to ensure that the investigation into Reza Outadi‘ dreary is both impartial and independent and that anyone who is reasonably suspected of criminal responsibility is brought to justice in a fair trial without the death penalty as an option.

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Iran Protests in Kazerun

An Interview with Hanif Jazayeri: The Iranian People Have Spoken Loud and Clear

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

On the 6th of August, as US sanctions affecting the purchase of dollars, metals, and car and plane parts were re-imposed on Iran, an interview with Hanif Jazayeri was broadcast across major American cities. Listeners in Las Vegas, Baltimore, Minneapolis, New Orleans, Raleigh, and Pittsburgh could tune in to hear the Iranian news editor discuss the latest wave of economic sanctions and their effect on the already unstable clerical regime.

The United States announced its latest wave of sanctions, which will target the Iranian oil industry, the backbone of the Iranian economy; however, the EU and Russia have already voiced their opposition to the sanctions. They announced they would prefer to salvage the crumbling JCPOA agreement.

A New Breed of Protest

Hanif opened the interview by fielding a question on the changing nature of the Iranian protest movement. He said, “the Iranian people have spoken loud and clear”, “they are blaming the regime for their economic hardship”. In the wake of the JCPOA, the Iranian regime unlocked billions of dollars in aid packages, but the people saw none of the benefits.

“They have noticed this,” said Hanif, “and that is actually because all the money has been spent in Syria, to prop up the dictator there, to fund terrorist groups in the region, for the domestic suppression apparatus of the regime, and the rest of it has lined the pockets of the mullahs and their families.”

Following this blatant abuse of power and mismanagement of resources, the Iranian people have taken to the streets in their thousands to express their frustration at the mullahs’ regime. The people want an end to the regime.

The International Community

Hanif went on to mention the Iranian opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi’s appeal to the international community to impose sanctions on Iran’s oil industry and exclude the current regime from the international banking system. Only the regime’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is benefitting from oil exports at present.

Hanif Jazayeri has played an active role himself in drumming up international support for the Iranian protest movement. He has been collecting footage from protestors in Iran and publishing them across social media to raise international awareness for the struggle of the Iranian people.

However, many within the international community have expressed reluctance and hesitation at the idea of reintroducing sanctions. A common argument against Maryam Rajavi’s proposal of sanctioning the Iranian oil industry is that it would further hurt the already struggling Iranian population.

Hanif attempted to dispel this common misconception. He cited the slogans adopted among the protestors which state, “our enemy is right here, they are lying when they say it is America”.

The people of Iran have suffered under the Iranian regime both when economic sanctions have been imposed, and after the sanctions were lifted. They saw no benefit from the lifting of the sanctions, their standard of living did not improve. Therefore, the lifting of the sanctions empowered the regime. It gave the Iranian regime more money to spend on suppressing the people.

Will Sanctions Empower Hardliners?

In response to Hanif’s argument, the interviewer countered that economic sanctions could empower the hardliners within Iran. They could be interpreted as “economic bullying” and allow the more extreme elements in Rouhani’s regime to portray Iran as a victim and being unfairly punished by the American government.

In reality, there are not hardliners and moderates within the Iranian regime. They are all hardliners. Rouhani himself has threatened to disrupt passage through the Strait of Hormuz if oil sanctions are imposed on Iran. His regime continues to arrest and execute political dissidents. There are no “hardliners” and “moderates”, only the regime in all its brutality.

Again, Hanif pointed to the slogans of the protestors to illustrate the point. The demonstrations across Iran have featured slogans stating, “no to hardliners, no to moderates”.

More than half of the country is in poverty and has been so for nearly forty years. For Iranians, the situation deteriorated after the sanctions were lifted. The regime received a financial windfall, which only gave them more resources to use in their routine abuse and repression of the Iranian people. “In the last two years, for example, the economic situation has spiraled downwards”, said Hanif.

Finally, Hanif Jazayeri saluted the brave protestors turning out across Iran, risking imprisonment and death in their determination to make their voices heard.

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UAE takes firmer position on Mullah's regime

The UAE Adds Nine Iranians to a Supporters of Terrorism Blacklist

UAE takes firmer position on Mullah's regime

The UAE increases oil production to help reduce oil purchase from Iran.

Ahead of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s Abu Dhabi visit on July 9th, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has placed nine Iranians on a blacklist for financing Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC) activities in the region.

The identities of the nine Iranians have not been disclosed. However, their addition to the terror financing blacklist means their bank accounts have been frozen.

Who are the nine?

Although not officially named, it is suspected that the nine Iranian entities and individuals are those that appeared on a US Treasury Department list as financial supporters of terrorism which were published in May.

The individuals on the list were Mas’ud Nikbakht, Sa’id Najafpur, Mohammad Hassan Khoda’i, Mohammad Reza Khedmati Valadzghard, Meghdad Amini, Foad Salehi, and Jahan Aras Kish. Also included on the blacklist were two companies, the Rashed Exchange, and Khedmati & Company Joint Partnership.

The US Treasury Department accused the seven individuals and two entities of funneling hundreds of millions of dollars into the Iranian regime’s IRGC and Quds forces through a vast currency exchange network. In a statement released at the time, US Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said, “the Iranian regime and its Central Bank have abused access to entities in the UAE to acquire US dollars to fund the IRGC-QF’s malign activities, including to fund and arm its regional proxy groups.”

The IRGC and Quds forces are disrupting forces in the region. They are active in the Syrian conflict and have supplied Houthi forces in Yemen with weapons and military advisers. Iranian opposition leader and President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Maryam Rajavi, has urged the international community to tackle the regime’s warmongering activities.

The UAE supports Tougher stance towards the Iranian regime

The latest move to freeze Iranian bank accounts in the UAE is a statement of support from the Emirati government. The UAE supported Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal and has backed the US decision to reimpose economic sanctions on the Iranian regime.

On his personal Twitter account, UAE Minister of State and Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash, pledged his support to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo after Pompeo announced the policy decision in May. Gargash said, “Uniting [our] efforts is the correct path for Iran to realize the futility of its incursions and expansionism”.

The US and the UAE enjoy close diplomatic ties. The UAE hosts 5,000 American troops and its port of Dubai is the US Navy’s busiest port abroad.

Striking the heart of the IRGC

The UAE is also working with the US to end constrict Iran’s oil revenues. The IRGC controls around 40% of the Iranian economy and is one of the main beneficiaries of Iran’s underground economy, estimated to be worth between US$100 and US$140 billion.

In an attempt to strike at IRGC oil revenues, the US has urged the international community to stop importing Iranian oil. To help end the global community’s reliance on Iranian oil, the US issued a statement to OPEC calling on other oil-producing nations to increase their oil production.

The UAE has answered the call. State-run Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. announced it will meet its goal of increasing oil production by an extra 200,000 barrels per day by the end of 2018. Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s largest oil producer, increased its oil production by 700,000 barrels per day in June 2018.

Faced with the prospect of being squeezed out of the oil market, the Iranian regime has responded with threats. In a speech to Iranian expatriates in Europe, Hassan Rouhani, regime’s president threatened to respond by closing the Strait of Hormuz. He said, “if Iran’s crude oil exports were threatened, the rest of the Mideast’s would be as well”.

One thing is clear. The mullahs will receive no assistance from the UAE. As the mullahs face shifting attitudes among the international community, their revenue channels face disruption.

The decision to freeze nine Iranian bank accounts in the UAE is a strong signal to the mullahs. The UAE and other players in the Middle East are not willing to tolerate the mullahs’ destabilizing activities and will oppose the regime anyway it can. Without a steady stream of oil revenue, and with a growing resistance movement at home the mullahs are running out of options.

Staff Writer

 

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