Posts Tagged ‘Maryam Rajavi’

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Iran protests in Haft-Tappeh

MEK: Haft Tappeh and Ahavaz Steel Workers Take to the Streets in Protest

Iran protests in Haft-Tappeh

The people of the city of Shush (SouthWest Iran) take it to the street to object the Iranian regime’s repressive measures against Haft-Tappeh workers.

On Saturday, November 17th, people gathered for a demonstration outside the Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Mill in Shush. Amongst the crowd was students, workers, women, and families, as they marched from the mill to the governorate office.

The protestors showed defiance in the face of extreme suppression and violent threats from the regime. The mullahs had deployed riot police and other security measures across the city, reminding protestors of the constant dangers of living under one of the world’s most repressive regimes.

As they walked, the protestors came together in chants of, “we are workers of the Haft Tappeh, we are hungry, hungry”. Some of their other chants were directed at the regime itself. Many shouted, “down with the oppressor”, “the betrayal of the authorities must be announced”, and, “we do not want incompetent officials”.

A Population Racked with Poverty

The workers from Haft Tappeh, like so many other segments of the Iranian workforce, are facing unemployment, poverty and widespread hunger.

When the crowd reached the governate office, they put up empty tables, symbolic of the tables in their homes which lie empty when the workers cannot afford to feed their families.

The Haft Tappeh workers have been on strike in protest over unpaid wages and the unnecessary privatization of the company.

Reports by the MEK network inside Iran indicate that the sugar workers of Haft Tappeh were not alone in their protests of Saturday. At the same time, steelworkers in Ahvaz also gathered in front of their governorate offices in protest at four months’ worth of unpaid wages.

They called for payment of their wages, better working conditions, and occupational safety. Their slogans also attacked the regime and expressed solidarity for their brothers and sisters striking outside Haft Tappeh.

They read, “steel, Haft Tappeh, unity, unity”, and, “down with this deceiver government”.

Support from the Iranian Resistance

Both of the strikes drew support from the Iranian opposition movement.

The president-elect of the Iranian opposition, Maryam Rajavi, issued a statement of support for the demonstrators, particularly the women who had braved the regime’s threats and turned out anyway.

Rajavi said, “leadership of women in the strikes of Iranian teachers and workers is a pride and flares up the flames of uprising and justice”. She added that the workers in Haft Tappeh and Ahvaz Steel were a voice for freedom and justice in Iran.

Finally, Ms. Rajavi and the MEK called on Iran’s youth to rise up in support of these brave men and women at Haft Tappeh and Ahvaz Steel. She also called on international human rights organizations and trade unions to lend their support.

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President-elect, Maryam Rajavi's message after the 65th resolution of the UN Third Committee of the Human Rights.

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

President-elect, Maryam Rajavi's message after the 65th resolution of the United Nations General Assembly’s Human Rights Committee condemning the continued human rights violations in Iran

Maryam Rajavi: Iran’s ruling theocracy must be isolated by the world community, its dossiers referred to the UN Security Council, and its leaders face justice for crimes against humanity

On Thursday the United Nations General Assembly’s Human Rights Committee adopted a new resolution censuring Iran for its violations of human rights. This is the 65th U.N. resolution condemning Iranian regime’s human rights record.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, welcomed the U.N. resolution.

“Condemning the systematic and gross violations of human rights by the theocratic regime ruling Iran, the UN resolution once again confirmed that the regime blatantly tramples upon the Iranian people’s most fundamental rights in all political, social and economic spheres,” she said.

Mrs. Rajavi added that “the Iranian regime is in no way congruous with the 21st century and must be isolated by the world community.”

The U.N. resolution referred to a number of issues that are well-known to the MEK and have been written about on this site before, including the “alarmingly high frequency” of the regime’s use of the death penalty against minors, “the widespread and systematic use of arbitrary detention,” prison officials “deliberately denying prisoners access to adequate medical treatment,” and “cases of suspicious deaths in custody.”

The Iranian regime is responsible for half of the world’s executions. It censors information going in and out of the country, in an attempt to control its citizens and prevent the international community from knowing the full extent of the mullahs’ crimes. The regime frequently denies legal representation to ethnic and religious minorities, and it detains and imprisons peaceful protesters for speaking out against the regime. International human rights groups have repeatedly intervened on behalf of Iranian prisoners who were denied due process and basic human rights. The mullahs have ignored all of these pleas and every act of censure and condemnation.

The Iranian Resistance asks that the international community turn over all records of the Iranian regime’s human rights violations to the United Nations Security Council. It also asks that the international community recognize the right of the people of Iran to rise up against this regime.

In her statement about the 65th Resolution, Mrs. Rajavi spoke about the Iranian regime’s mass execution of 30,000 political prisoners in the summer of 1988. The murders of these men and women, who were mostly MEK members or supporters, remain unpunished to this day.

Mrs. Rajavi said, “The most vivid example of grave violations of human rights in Iran is the 1988 massacre of political prisoners perpetrated by the regime’s key institutions and leaders, who are still in power, still defend this crime, and remain immune from punishment. The world community faces a monumental test in investigating and prosecuting those responsible for this great crime against humanity.”

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Strikes against the Iranian regime, grow among various sectors in Iran

Iranian Merchants, Steel Workers, and Factory Workers Strike as Part of Growing Nationwide Movement

Strikes against the Iranian regime, grow among various sectors in Iran

Growing strikes across Iran in protest to the high prices, the dire economy and the Iranian regime’s repressive measures.

Strikes continued across Iran on Thursday, with additional workers joining the nationwide movement, reports the MEK sources inside Iran. Factory workers, steelworkers, and merchants are now all part of the growing strike movement.

Bazaar Owners’ Strike

In Tabriz, in northwest Iran, bazaar owners went on strike on Wednesday in protest of rising prices, scarcity of goods, and a decrease in customers. MEK sources inside Iran reported that shops near Sa’at Square and Taleghani Avenue were closed. Shop owners in other cities reportedly joined the strike and closed their shops as well.

Factory Workers’ Strike

On Thursday, factory workers from the Haft Tappeh Sugar Mill Company in Shush continued their strike for the eleventh consecutive day. The workers rallied outside of the governor’s office in Shush, chanting, “Death to oppressors, hail to workers!” and “Shush locals, support us!”

The factory workers are striking because they have not been paid for four months and to protest the privatization of the Haft Tappeh Sugar Mill Company.

The striking factory workers also expressed solidarity with the Ahvaz steel workers, who have been striking for seven consecutive days. They chanted, “Proud steel workers, thank you, thank you!”

Steel Workers’ Strike

Ahvaz Steel Factory workers rallied on the streets of Ahvaz on Wednesday to demand better working conditions and their unpaid wages. The steel workers marched to the governor’s office and blocked the surrounding streets. In videos posted on social media by the MEK network, the steel workers can be heard chanting, “We will not leave from here, until we receive our rights!”

“No nation has seen this much injustice!”

“Workers of Khuzestan, unite, unite!”

Support for the Strikes

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) previously released a statement supporting the strikes. The statement read: “Workers of the Ahvaz National Steel Group also protested on Saturday, gathering in front of the governor’s office in the city. They chanted: No nation has seen this much injustice; Hossein Hossein, is their slogan, theft is their pride; what did behind the scene hands have done with the factory?”

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, has been vocal in her support of the nationwide strike movement, recently tweeting in support of the striking steel workers and factory workers:

“Hail to the deprived workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory and Steel Factory of #Ahvaz who have risen up to demand their rights, calling for an expansion of the protests by the slogan of ‘Workers of Khuzestan, unite, unite.’”

Mrs. Rajavi reiterated her support of the continuing strikes in another tweet: “Workers’ unity and perseverance against the mullahs’ oppressive rule herald a free, prosperous #Iran devoid of all forms of repression and discrimination.”

The Ahvaz steel workers have been forced to strike three times this year for unpaid wages and better working conditions. During the June strikes, more than 50 striking workers were arrested and four were beaten while being transferred to jail.

In June, the Free Workers Union of Iran commented on the brutal beatings, saying, “One of the workers was beaten to the extent that he suffered a haemorrhage, but the authorities did not make an effort to transfer him to a medical facility.”

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Haft Tapeh Sugercane Factory worker's strike

Iran: Sugarcane Factory Workers Strike for Tenth Day

Haft Tapeh Sugercane Factory worker's strike

Haft Tapeh Sugarcane Factory Workers have been on Strike for ten days. demanding their delayed paychecks and protesting poor living conditions.

Wednesday marked the tenth consecutive day of strikes for workers at the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company. The workers have been on strike since November 5th to protest not receiving their wages for the past four months. They are also protesting the privatization of the company.

The striking workers rallied outside of the Shush Governor’s Office for the second day to protest. The MEK network shared videos and images of the strike on social media. In videos, workers chanted, “Down with tyrants, long live workers!” and “People of Shush, support us!”

The workers’ chants also referenced the ongoing strike by Ahvaz Steel Company workers, which has been in progress since November 10th. The workers chanted, “Thank you steel workers!” in solidarity with their fellow striking workers.

According to the state-run ILNA news agency, almost 1,000 workers took part in the protest. 2,700 workers at the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company have gone without wages for four months, according to one protester who was interviewed by ILNA. “Unfortunately, the employer has no reaction to the workers’ unpaid wages and we are waiting to see whether they will take any real measures,” the protester said.

ILNA published a picture of workers with a banner reading, “Please order the city bakeries to lend bread to Haft Tappeh workers. Workers of Haft Tappeh are hungry.”

The Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory, the oldest sugar factory in Iran, was privatized in 2015. Since then, debts at the company have risen, and workers have become progressively poorer. According to official reports, factory workers have lost 80% of their purchasing power over the past few months, and the company is considering laying off workers.

Jafar Azimzadeh, head of the Free Union of Workers in Iran, characterized the condition of the factory workers as “slavery.”

“The families of some workers have to buy bread on credit, because of unpaid salaries and if this situation continues, even bakeries will refuse to sell bread to the workers on credit,” he said.

 

Factory workers at the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company have gone on strike several times this year, due to unpaid wages and unfulfilled promises by their employer. The most recent strike took place in August and involved 500 striking workers who had not been paid for three months. According to reports from the MEK network, riot police beat protesters and used tear gas. Five striking workers were arrested and charged with “disrupting order.”  They were later released.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, commended the striking workers, tweeting: “Hail to the deprived workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory and Steel Factory of #Ahvaz who have risen up to demand their rights, calling for expansion of the protests by the slogan of “Workers of Khuzestan, unite, unite.”
#IranProtests”

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Terribly biased article on the Guardian against the MEK

Falsehoods and Lies: Debunking the Guardian’s Piece on the MEK

Terribly biased article on the Guardian against the MEK

Biased article bashing the MEK in the Guardian raises outrage among the Iranian diaspora. The piece is considered a reaction to the recent surge in protests and strikes in the country and a preparation for more terrorist activities against the main opposition, the MEK.

Aaron Merat’s long-awaited hit piece was finally published in the Guardian on Friday. Under the headline ‘Terrorists, Cultists- or Champions of Iranian Democracy’, the piece pedaled the regime’s brand of lies and misinformation. It was a clear example of Tehran’s smear campaign against the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) that it has used to undermine the Iranian opposition and legitimize its use of violence against political dissidents.

The Death of Independent Journalism

Even before the article’s publication, the MEK expressed its misgivings over its content. MEK spokesperson, Shahin Gobadi, wrote two letters to the editor of the Guardian in recent weeks. In the letters, he aired his concerns over Aaron Merat’s ability to conduct objective journalism on the MEK.

Merat has close ties to the Iranian regime and its lobbyists. He worked for the Economist between 2011 and 2014, during which time he was an outspoken advocate for the regime. He has written previous articles with the explicit intention of demonizing the MEK and condemning the Iranian resistance.

Who is the MEK?

It came as little surprise then that his piece for the Guardian was no different. It was essentially a hit piece against the Iranian resistance group and was full of inaccuracies, falsehoods, and barely concealed attacks on the MEK.

In his very definition of who the MEK are, Merat is incorrect. He described the organization as a “fringe Iranian revolutionary group”.

The MEK is far from a “fringe” group. They are the oldest, largest, and most popular Iranian resistance group.

The group organized nationwide protests in January and December which spread across every major city in Iran. At its annual Grand Gathering event, it draws an attendance of more than 100,000 supporters, including high-profile political figures such as former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, and President Trump’s National Security Adviser, John Bolton.

The Grand Gathering of over 100,000 MEK supporters at VillePinte Paris-June 30, 2018

The resistance group enjoys widespread support inside Iran and abroad.

Merat later seems to admit that the MEK does enjoy the support of international political figures but seeks to explain this by suggesting that the MEK pays “western political influencers fees to pen op-eds and give speeches”.

This is untrue. Professor Raymond Tanter debunked this myth with the help of the US Treasury Department. The Treasury Department investigated the allegations that its political figures had received cash to write opinion pieces and give speeches at MEK-organised events, but found them to be “unsupported claims”.

Ms. Somayeh Mohammadi

Merat’s piece begins by describing Mostafa and Robbie Mohammadi’s journey to Albania to “rescue their daughter”. Merat alleges that Ms. Somayeh Mohammadi, the couple’s daughter, is being held against her will by the MEK.

These allegations are false. Ms. Somayeh Mohammadi joined the MEK in 1990 and has been a member for more than two decades. She has previously been interviewed by Canadian and US officials, and each time she has maintained that she is in Albania working for the MEK out of her own free will.

Somayeh Mohammadi, one of distinguished members of MEK, now living in Albania

She has previously written a book about the regime pedaling lies about her situation and using her case to legitimize terror attacks against the MEK. She even went as far as to write an open letter to Albania’s Minister for Internal Affairs, Fatmir Xhafaj, publicly calling for an end to his lies.

Repeating Lies to Demonize the MEK

The Guardian piece goes on to blame the MEK for the deaths of six Americans in Iran in the 1970s.

However, subsequent investigations by both the US State Department and the Washington Post newspaper found this to be false. The 2005 State Department report clearly states, “a splinter organization with ties to Marxist groups in Cuba and Oman… appropriated and modified the MEK name and symbols, clashing with original MEK members, and killed Americans in Tehran”.

The report describes that the individuals responsible for the murders were later caught, tried, and executed for the killings.

Merat also attempts to blame the MEK for killing Iraqi Kurds in the North of Iraq. He claims Saddam Hussein used MEK members to quell the Kurdish armed resistance during the 1990 Gulf War.

The Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) provided a written statement in 1999 that unequivocally stated the MEK was not involved in the killing of the Kurdish people. The statement read “the KDP can confirm that the Mujahedin were not involved in suppressing the Kurdish people neither during the uprising nor in its aftermath”.

Delisting the MEK as a Terror Group

Merat goes on to suggest that the MEK’s delisting as a terrorist group was not because the group was deemed mislabelled and was a non-violent organization, but because if the US didn’t delist them, the group would have been wiped out in Iraq.

Once again, this claim is unfounded. The Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit actually threatened to court order Hillary Clinton’s State Department unless she removed the group from the country’s terror list.

Burying the Regime’s Terrorist Plots

Merat then furthers the regime’s interests by attempting to cast doubt over the regime’s terror activities in Europe. In June, European authorities foiled a plot to detonate a car laden with explosives at the MEK’s Grand Gathering in Paris.

After a thorough investigation, Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian diplomat working at the regime’s embassy in Vienna was found to have orchestrated the plot. The French government froze the assets of the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence.

Merat attempts to shift the blame away from the regime. He quotes the Iranian Foreign Minister directly in his piece, who called the allegations of the Iranian terror plot a “sinister false flag ploy”.

If the plot was nothing more than a “false flag ploy” it seems unlikely that the French government would have taken such forceful actions against the Iranian regime.

On top of seizing assets, the Emmanuel Macron’s government expelled an Iranian diplomat and is currently refusing to nominate a new French ambassador to Iran. France’s foreign ministry also confirmed that following its own investigation, it was in no doubt that the Iranian intelligence ministry was behind the June 30th terror plot.

The Regime is Fearful

Aaron Merat’s piece goes on to spout all of the regime talking points against the MEK. However, his piece does provide some insight into why the regime spends so much time, money and effort on demonizing the MEK and its supporters.

He wrote, “politicians openly called for bombing the Islamic republic, amid growing panic over Iran’s nuclear program- the existence of which had first been exposed by the MEK”. In this sentence, Merat demonstrates why the regime despises the MEK. It works tirelessly to bring the regime’s atrocities and illegal behavior to light.

Merat writes that the MEK and its supporters around the world “openly call for the overthrow of the Islamic republic and the installation of Maryam Rajavi as the leader of Iran”.

In this one aspect, Merat is correct. But in drawing this to attention, Merat is also drawing to attention why both he and the regime relentlessly pursue the MEK.

The MEK represents the single greatest existential threat to the mullahs’ regime. It has orchestrated nationwide protests that have crippled Iranian regime’s key industries. Even regime officials have admitted publicly that the MEK is a direct threat to the regime.

The MEK has resistance units working inside Iran, that mobilized in the nationwide uprisings in December and January of this year. This has the Iranian regime terrified and explains why they use mouthpieces like Aaron Merat to undermine and demonize the MEK in international media outlets.

New Report Details Iran Regime’s Demonization Campaign Against the MEK

The piece in the Guardian is little more than the mullahs lashing out at the MEK out of fear. The MEK is gathering momentum. Strikes and protests are now a daily occurrence in Iran and the mullahs future in power is growing more uncertain by the day. The fact is, regime change is on the horizon. When it comes, the world will look at Merat’s piece, and others like it and wonder how they got away with such blatant lies and deceit.

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Maryam Rajavi Calls Supporting Iran’s Strikers Citizens’ ‘Patriotic Duty’

2nd day of strike by merchants in Iran

For the second day, the merchants in various bazaars in Iran are on strike over the plunging rial and the dire economic crisis due to the regime corruption and mismanagement.

Tehran’s merchants are striking, as are the Iranian farmers and truck drivers as yet more protests threaten to engulf the country, based on reports from the MEK network inside Iran.

On Monday, November 5th, merchants in several Iranian cities closed their stalls in local bazaars. The strikes, which coincided with the reintroduction of strict US sanctions, were organized across social media and quickly gained traction.

Skyrocketing prices and crippling inflation have thrown many of Iran’s merchants into poverty. With new sanctions affecting Iranian imports and exports, the situation is set to worsen.

For the nation’s truck drivers, the working conditions are not much better. The sector shut down for the fourth time on the 31st of October and is yet to restart. Drivers from Tehran, Isfahan, Hormozgan, Zanjan, Golestan, Kermanshah, Kerman, West Azerbaijan, Central, Khorasan Razavi, and Yazd all turned off their engines in protest at the rising cost of spare parts, corruption, and appalling working conditions that have left many of them in a fight for their survival.

For Iran’s farmers, there is a similar picture of abstract poverty and a struggle to put food on the table. This has prompted many brave farmers from provinces across the country, including Isfahan a Khorasgan, to stage a sit-in and protest.

Unparalleled Bravery

The strikers are demonstrating their bravery and determination by maintaining these protests against the bloody and violent regime.

For the truck drivers, many of their colleagues and friends were arrested in the previous rounds of strikes. More than 200 drivers were detained in the third round of strikes that took place earlier this year. The regime then threatened to execute 17 of those detained.

The strikers that took to the streets in this latest round of protests are also demanding the immediate release of their colleagues.

The regime’s treatment of the truck drivers has not been atypical. The mullahs frequently employ repressive and heavy-handed strategies for dealing with public protest and political dissent.

The farmers and merchants, along with the valiant truck drivers, are aware of the danger they are in, yet they continue to risk their liberty and their lives to protest the regime and its policies.

A Call for Support

Their determination has not gone unnoticed by the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) and the President-elect of the Iranian resistance, Maryam Rajavi.

Ms. Rajavi saluted the striking truck drivers, farmers, and merchants in a statement to the Iranian people. She called on Iran’s youth to stand with these brave men and women and said that supporting the full restitution of the rights of the Iranian people was a matter of patriotic duty.

Maryam Rajavi also called on the international community to lend their support. She urged syndicates, trade unions, and human rights organizations to lend assistance to Iran’s farmers, truck drivers and merchants in whatever capacity they could.

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Protest against the abduction of Hashem Khastar

Iran: Protesters Call for Release of Abducted Activist Teacher

Protest against the abduction of Hashem Khastar

Tens of protesters object the continued abduction of the retired teacher and union activists, Hashem Khastar by the Iranian intelligence forces.

Tens of activists joined the family of Mr. Hashem Khastar, the retired teacher and head of the Teachers Union Center in the northeastern city of Mashhad on Monday to protest his abduction by the Iranian regime. Dozens of protesters rallied outside of Ebn Seena Hospital to demand Khastar’s release from the psychiatric facility where he is being held without cause.

State security forces and anti-riot units were already present and immediately arrested Khastar’s son.

Mr. Khastar’s wife, Sedighe Maleki, refused to leave, saying, “I will remain here until my husband is released.”

State security forces then arrested Mrs. Maleki as well and transferred her to an unknown location. Mrs. Maleki is currently in poor health following open heart surgery.

Mr. Khastar’s sister also refused to leave the hospital, despite orders from security forces. Witnesses saw her shouting for the release of her brother.

Khastar’s Abduction

Hashem Khastar was abducted from his farm in Mashhad on October 23rd by security forces. After his wife reported his disappearance, she received a call from a member of the Revolutionary Guards, who said that her husband was hospitalized in the psychiatric ward of Ibn Seena Hospital.

Activist Teacher Abducted by Iranian Regime

Mr. Khastar has no history of psychiatric illness. He takes blood pressure medication, which is normal for his age but has no other physical ailments.

Mr. Khastar is under heavy guard and has not been allowed, visitors. Mrs. Maleki has still not been permitted to see her husband. She spoke of her frustration in an interview:

“On Thursday, I went to the courthouse for permission to visit my husband, Mr. Seyed Hashem Khastar, in Mashhad’s Ebn Seena Hospital. There was no file or records about this arrest. I spoke to the deputy public prosecutor about my husband’s arrest and he said they had not issued any orders for his arrest. I spoke with another deputy public prosecutor and he said we had not given any orders either. I received the same answer from the Intelligence Ministry, the IRGC intelligence and the police.

“The Social Emergency unit arrested him outside his orchard and took him straight to the Ebn Seena Hospital. They took blood from him and gave him an injection… Considering the fact that my husband’s life is in danger in this psychiatric hospital, he must be released immediately,” she added.

Calls to Action

Mrs. Maleki asked the protesters to demand that the Iranian regime’s judiciary immediately release Khastar.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) has issued a call for international human rights organizations to take action and call upon the Iranian region to release Mr. Khastar. The NCRI Education Commission is also calling upon the

United Nations Secretary-General, the UN Security Council, the UN Human Rights Council and the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran to guarantee Mr. Khastar’s safety.

Arrested for Activism

Reports published on social media by MEK sources say that Mr. Khastar was arrested by IRGC intelligence agents without a warrant and transferred to a psychiatric ward. Mrs. Maleki described the roadblocks she had encountered in her efforts to visit her husband.

“A nurse told me that Mr. Khastar has been hospitalized in an emergency room and is banned from any family visits, based on orders issued by security officials,” she said.

“He was completely healthy and after retiring spent many of his days farming. The only medication he consumed were blood pressure pills. Khastar being hospitalized in an emergency section of a special facility for psychiatric patients means [authorities] injected a special type of medication with the intention of killing him, or he had been severely injured under torture or during his arrest,” Mrs. Maleki added.

Khastar was a tireless advocate of teachers who had been arrested and imprisoned by the regime on a number of occasions for his activism. In the weeks leading up to his abduction, Khastar participated in protests on behalf of jailed teachers and made public calls for the release of his imprisoned colleagues.

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Truck drivers strike in Iran

Iran’s Truckers Strike for Fifth Consecutive Day

Truck drivers strike in Iran

The Iranian truck drivers have entered their 5th day of the strike for the fourth time this year.

Monday marked the fifth consecutive day of strikes by Iran’s truck drivers. The MEK network inside Iran reported that the latest round of strikes has spread to 44 cities in 23 provinces across the country. The strikes have garnered widespread support from Iranians from all sectors of society.

 

Truck drivers across Iran are parking their trucks and refusing to carry loads. Videos shared on social media by the Iranian Resistance show evidence of the strike taking place across Iran. In Dezful and Mashhad, the loading stations were filled with parked trucks. In Marand, East Azerbaijan Province, the roads were empty of heavy trucks.

 

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and leader of the Iranian Resistance, saluted the striking the striking drivers, tweeting:

“Hail to #Iran’s truck drivers who have started their fourth round of nationwide strike. In addition to their basic rights, they are also demanding freedom of their imprisoned colleagues.”

Mrs. Rajavi further called upon Iran’s youth to support the drivers and asked international labor unions to lend their support to the strike:

“I call on the youth to lend their moral and material support to the truck drivers, and urge international workers and truckers’ unions to declare their solidarity with the truck drivers on strike in #Iran.”

This is the fourth strike this year for Iran’s struggling truck drivers. The drivers are protesting low wages, high prices for spare parts (particularly replacement tires), corruption, high fees, and safety issues. The drivers are also demanding the release of their colleagues who were arrested in the previous strikes.

Iranian Truckers Launch Fourth Round of Strikes This Year

During the third round of strikes, the regime arrested over 200 striking drivers and threatened to execute 17 of the detained drivers. The strikes gained international attention from labor unions, including the Teamsters and the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), who called the threat of executions a blatant violation of labor rights.

 

James P. Hoffa, the Teamsters General President, wrote a letter in support of the striking drivers on behalf of the Teamsters Union during the October strikes:

 

“The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, representing 1.4 million transportation and supply chain workers in the United States and Canada, stands in solidarity with our Iranian brothers and sisters. We urge the government of Iran to listen to the grievances of striking Iranian truck drivers, address their just demands and recognize their internationally recognized rights to assembly, speech, freedom of association and collective bargaining.”

 

The Iranian regime has ignored the pleas of its truck drivers even as its roads have emptied. It has ignored four strikes and international outcry at its acts of brutality. Truck drivers make up a crucial part of Iran’s infrastructure, and they cannot be silenced. The country cannot function without truckers, and truckers cannot function within the corrupt regime. Something has to change.

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The Iranian Resistance Outlines Strategies for Confronting the Regime’s Terror Activites

NCRI-US introduction of the book "Iran double downs on terror and turmoil"

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI)- US office, introduces the new book “Iran double downs on terror and turmoil” in a press briefing in Washington D.C. at NCRI-US office- November 2, 2018

On Friday, November 2nd, the deputy director of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Alireza Jafarzedah, held a press conference in Washington DC ahead of the release of the new book entitled “Iran Doubles Down on Terror and Turmoil”. In the conference, he outlined the Iranian regime’s decision-making, planning, and execution of terror attacks abroad.

He also explored strategies for confronting the regime’s network of terror and detailed what the international community can do to prevent Iranian state-sponsored terror attacks occurring.

A Surge in State-Sponsored Terror Attacks

Jafarzedah drew attention to the increased volume of Iranian state-sponsored terror attacks over the last 12 months. In 2017, the Iranian regime planned and executed two state-sponsored terror attacks

However, in the first 11 months of 2018, Tehran has planned and attempted to carry out no less than eight terror plots on US and European soil.

Several of the most high-profile attacks included an attack in March against the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) in Albania. The regime’s Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS) planned to detonate a truck bomb during the MEK’s Nowruz (Persian New Year) celebrations.

Three months later, the regime’s MOIS coordinated an attack on the MEK’s annual grand gathering event in Paris. More than 100,000 members of the Iranian resistance and their supporters attended the event, including delegations of prominent politicians from the US and Europe.

The plan was foiled when two MOIS agents were arrested. The pair had entered Albania under the guise of reporters. The president-elect of the Iranian resistance,  Maryam Rajavi, was present at the event, as was the former mayor of New York and lawyer to President Trump, Rudy Giuliani.

Jafarzedah detailed the MEK’s findings that a regime diplomat based at the Iranian embassy in Vienna provided a Belgian-Iranian couple with the explosive matter. The couple was instructed to detonate a car laden with explosives at the annual event.

The diplomat, Assadollah Assadi, was the MOIS station-chief in Vienna and responsible for coordinating terror attacks across Europe. Assadi was arrested by German authorities, the couple was detained whilst traveling in a car to the event in Paris armed with the explosives. Disaster was narrowly averted.

In response to the failed attack, the French government froze MOIS assets and expelled an Iranian diplomat from Paris over their involvement in the attack’s planning.

Another plot was foiled in the US. Two Iranian regime agents were arrested in August. The pair had been monitoring the MEK with the intention of carrying out a “capture/kill” operation against MEK members.

Most recently, Danish authorities foiled a regime-orchestrated plot to assassinate an Iranian dissident on Danish soil. The Danish authorities arrested one suspect in connection to the plot. It also recalled the Danish ambassador to Iran.

Jafarzedah concluded that these plots were not rogue operations. He cited evidence that indicates the highest levels of the Iranian leadership were involved in the plots. 4 diplomats were implicated, based in three different countries. It is unfathomable to think that the Iranian leadership, including Hassan Rouhani and the Supreme Leader Khamenei, was not involved in the plots’ coordination.

The Web

Jafarzedah outlined the Iranian leadership’s decision-making web that coordinates these elaborate and damaging terror attacks.

Based on the MEK’s findings, Jafarzedah described how the Iranian Supreme National Security Council, headed by President Hassan Rouhani, coordinates terror attacks with the assistance of the heads of MOIS, IRGC Intelligence, Qods Forces and the Intelligence Coordination Council.

Why Now?

So, why is the regime ratcheting up its terror attacks now? Jafarzedah asserted that it is because of the increasing popularity and effectiveness of the MEK in Iran.

Over the past 10 months, MEK-organised protests have broken out across 142 Iranian cities and hit many of Iran’s major sectors. The protests have also taken a far stronger anti-regime tone. Protestors’ slogans have centered on a rejection of the regime and its authoritarian and repressive ideologies.

Jafarzedah said that the terror attacks were a sign of the regime’s “utter desperation” in the face of mounting pressures both internally and externally.

Confronting the Regime’s State-Sponsored Terrorism

Jafarzedah recommended several strategies for containing and limiting the Iranian regime’s terror activities.

First and foremost, Jafarzedah recommended that all the regime agents be prosecuted under the full weight of US and European law.

Secondly, the US and European governments must expel all Iranian terrorist diplomats and shut down Iranian embassies in Europe. The involvement of several diplomats in the planning and coordination indicate that Iranian diplomatic activities must be put under the microscope.

The MEK has repeatedly asserted that Iranian embassies make up a barely-concealed espionage web through which the regime can plot terror attacks. It is only through shutting down these embassies that the regime’s nefarious activities can be stymied.

Finally, Jafarzedah asserted that international sanctions must be levied against the Iranian regime. By constricting the flow of money to the regime, the international community can end the regime’s financing and training of international terror groups.

Is the International Community Warming to the Idea?

Immediately following President Trump’s withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal, European governments scrambled to salvage the deal. Even when the US announced its latest round of sanctions, European governments resisted them.

However, following the recent terror plots on European soil, including the Paris and Denmark attacks, the European community has warmed to the idea of possible sanctions.

Fox News reported that the Danish government is now calling for economic sanctions against Tehran. When the idea was floated at a meeting of EU ambassadors on Wednesday, eight countries, including France and the UK expressed support for the idea.

The Danish Prime Minister, Lars Lokke Rasmussen, expressed his pleasure. “I appreciate the support from my colleague Theresa May today. In close collaboration with [the] UK and other countries, we will stand up to Iran”, he said after a meeting with his counterpart from the UK.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that his government stands with the European heads of state to end the regime’s assassination attempts on European soil.

Pompeo said, “that kind of behavior needs to stop, and we have offered our support and effort to help the Europeans in preventing these kinds of assassination attempts from taking place”.

The MEK had suggested that in the face of increased regime terror attacks, the European community should begin to rethink its policy of “appeasement” with the Iranian regime. At the Friday press conference, Jafarzedeh said, “they [European governments] now have to look at these realities in a totally different light”.

The summer of 2018 could mark a turning point in international policy towards the Iranian regime. Should the European governments end their decades-long policy of appeasement towards the mullahs, they will find themselves under even more pressure.

Staff Writer

 

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Disinformation by MOIS,Disinformation Campaign,Iranian twitter accounts closed,Maryam Rajavi,Massoud Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI,PMOI

Iranian regime's fake accounts in Twitter to demonize MEK

Iranian Regime Used Twitter to Demonize the MEK

Iranian regime's fake accounts in Twitter to demonize MEK

Twitter has terminated 770 accounts used by the Iranian regime to demonize its main opposition, the MEK

In September, Twitter deleted 770 accounts linked to the Iranian regime after discovering that they were used to spread propaganda and misinformation. Facebook, Google, and Instagram had also removed Iranian-regime accounts from their platforms in the around the same time.

On October 17th, Twitter released the content of the deleted accounts. A total of 1,122,936 tweets, along with embedded photos and videos, were released to the public. Although most of the tweets were aimed at influencing the outcome of the 2016 election, a disturbing number of the messages were directed at the MEK and the Iranian Resistance. The newly-released tweets confirm the MEK’s long-held assertion that the Iranian regime considers the MEK to be an existential threat and sees the destruction of the resistance organization as the only way to maintain its claim to power.

In early 2018, the Iranian regime stepped up their Twitter campaign in response to the people’s uprising, which had begun the month before. The misinformation campaign, along with simultaneous acts of suppression inside of Iran set the stage for acts of terrorism against the MEK and the Iranian Resistance abroad.

The majority of the tweets regarding the MEK are in Persian. Other tweets are in English, Arabic, Spanish, French, Albanian, and Pashto, in descending order of prevalence. The tweets first appeared in 2012 and multiplied until 2018, when the accounts were detected and shut down. The accounts published more tweets in 2018 than in all six previous years combined.

The released tweets are an example of the ways in which the regime uses the media and “friendly correspondents” to create a false narrative. The WashingtonPost summed up the regime’s strategy with this headline from October 17th: “Iranians masqueraded as foreign journalists to push political messages online, new Twitter data shows.”

In a television interview on July 9, 2017, Former Iranian regime Intelligence Minister Ali Fallahian acknowledged that the Ministry of Intelligence uses this tactic. “In order to gather intelligence,” he said, “the Ministry of Intelligence needs a cover, whether inside or outside the country. We do not send an intelligence officer to Germany or the United States to say, ‘Hey, I am from the Ministry of Intelligence.’ [Rather,] a business or journalism cover is needed.”

Along these lines, one of the published tweets reads:

  • NBC On Assignment with #RichardEngel commissioned these exclusive drone shots of the #MKO’s secret new base near Tirana in Albania. The #MEK are a shadowy group with a terrorist past they killed Americans in Iran in the 1970s and then fought alongside Saddam Hussein. Widely hated. https://t.co/F019t3iuvh

According to the recent disclosure, the regime set up multiple accounts and created at least 70 hashtags related to the Resistance. Prior to the annual gathering of the Iranian Resistance in June, the regime created the hashtags #BanTerrorOrg, #BanMEK, #IranHatesMEK, and #No2MEK. The regime claimed in many cases that the hashtags were created by people who hated both the regime and the resistance movement. This is a well-known tactic by the regime’s intelligence meant to confuse outsiders looking for information. The MEK has called agents of the regime out for these ploys many times, but the most common response is that MEK members claim that anyone who opposes them must be an intelligence agent but provide no proof. Now there is an abundance of proof.

The regime focused a great deal of attention on Ashraf 3, the MEK camp in Albania. These are some of the tweets that were disclosed that concern MEK members in Albania:

  • Senior US Senators meet Iranian terror group leader in Albania https://t.co/eID2iLGZ3b #realiran https://t.co/lBWuvkd4Wz
  • #MEK terrorist camp in #Albania poses grave risk to Albania, the #Balkans and the #MiddleEast’ https://t.co/0mmMAgYtT8 https://t.co/X2NJx7a9do
  • RT @noiranwarorg: An Eye-opener: Camp Ashraf three, relocated from Iraq to Albania: “Trump, along with Israel, has a clear plan and this i…
  • Forget #politics, investigate #MEK #humanrights abuses in #Albania https://t.co/ta70Ax82Wo #Iran #JohnBolton #Tirana
  • A speech last week by Trump’s legal advisor Rudy Giuliani in #Washington demonstrates fully that he, John Bolton, John McCain and the Trump administration hawks are able, without reservation, to exploit #Albania as a failed nation state. https://t.co/5YKNBkCnIu
  • The #MEK is a terrorist group. #Albania cannot host a terrorist group without consequences. This is not #Afghanistan or #Iraq or #Syria in which groups hide in the chaos and violence. This is a peaceful, democratic country which wishes to join the #EU. https://t.co/5YKNBkCnIu

A number of tweets that are known to have originated from the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and Intelligence Ministry either link to an Intelligence Ministry-affiliated site known as Iran-Interlink or quote intelligence agent Massoud Khodabandeh or his wife, Anne Singleton. These known agents of the Iranian regime were formerly instructed to focus on Camps Ashraf and Liberty and have now been asked to refocus on the presence of the MEK in Albania. The troll accounts retweet the agents and amplify their message, which is a common tactic.

The following are some of the disclosed tweets which follow this pattern:

  • RT @IranInterlink: Massoud Khodabndeh: The mysterious disappearance of a member of the Mojahedin Khalq (MEK) terrorist group in Albania has…
  • RT @ma_khodabandeh: Albanian media fooled by MEK ‘misdirection’ https://t.co/tScZMXWOAJ
  • RT @AnneKhodabandeh: Trump Administration exploits Albania as a failed state, Rama is silent https://t.co/MzbZc7KQet
  • #Albanian PM offends the #Jews by comparing their suffering to #terrorists ( #MEK) https://t.co/G6OvAVT88k by @AnneKhodabandeh @ma_khodabandeh https://t.co/wqD2hPf9rq
  • RT @ma_khodabandeh: My latest in Bakanspost. Albania: MEK rebrands by assassinating unwanted members https://t.co/73WdjnGbSU
  • #IranFreedom? #Iran_Maryam? Mojahedin Khalq thugs beat-up Mostafa Mohammadi and his daughter (Photos) http://t.co/rHQOBgUBlc

Other tweets targeted the MEK’s presence in France or condemned the Iranian Resistance’s annual gathering in Paris:

  • We condemn that French government is hosting MKO #NoToMKO #TrumpSupportsTerrorism #GiulianiSupportsTerrorism #BanTerrorOrg https://t.co/ZFwc4vbJVd
  • Mr president @EmmanuelMacron the so-called #MEK group which has carried out numerous #terrorist activities in Iran, which has acted as mercenaries of Saddam Hussein and killed thousands of Iraqi Shiites and Iraqi Kurd is living freely in your country expel them please #BanTerrorOrg https://t.co/PTcGpQXAwk
  • Just imagine what would happen if Iran hosted an #ISIS gathering (the murderer of more than 700 French citizens from 2015)? Now #France is hosting a gathering of #MEK terrorist organization (responsible for the murder of 15,000 Iranians) in Paris! #BanTerrorOrg https://t.co/mi2PfOa5W9
  • Paris is hosting a gathering of #MEK terrorist organization (responsible for the murder of 15,000 People) This is like how France supported #ISIS in Syria. https://t.co/AE04kFO7oK
  • Why are France, the US, and some other countries like Saudi Arabia are supporting MEK terror group? Do you know MEK? “Since 1981 the [MEK] has claimed responsibility for murdering thousands of Iranians,” the report said. Among victims, there are many kids and women #TuesdayThoughts https://t.co/WyYGEdIxZW
  • France’s safety is the main victim of MKO’s traffic https://t.co/P9dAPc2bCJ

According to a regime parliamentarian, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif traveled to France in a failed attempt to cancel the Iranian Resistance gathering. When he was unable to do so, the regime tweeted this message, claiming to be from the MEK:

  • MKO announcement: annual “resistance” conference in Paris canceled for security concerns https://t.co/iLm8vqJzjD

It does not appear that anyone was fooled by the message.

Some tweets showed the regime’s furor over American support for the Iranian Resistance:

  • RT @Zolfegar12: @Mojahedineng @nikkihaley Shame upon shame @nikkihaley ambassador of #America obviously retweeted from mek/mko terrorist ac…
  • RT @tparsi (Trita Parsi): With Bolton in the White House, the MEK terrorists are one step closer in doing to Iran what Bolton did to Iraq. Make no mistake…
  • When Rudi Giuliani support a Terrorist Group Americans have a more negative view of former New York City Mayor today https://t.co/5h3kTju2W2 #NoToMKO #Trump #TrumpSupportsTerrorism #NoToMEK #GiulianiSupportsTerrorism https://t.co/S9WbzSJjMg
  • Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and informal adviser Newt Gingrich are listed as headliners for the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq conference in Paris.For 15 years,the U.S. designated the MEK a terrorist group #NoToMKO #Trump #TrumpSupportsTerrorism #NoToMEK #GiulianiSupportsTerrorism https://t.co/ODqSd3uz67
  • Stop supporting terrotist group dumpy #NoToMKO #GiulianiSupportsTerrorism #TrumpSupportsTerrorism #BanTerrorOrg https://t.co/Ld8Qnhtit0
  • @N0_H8_EVER You’re right! Maryam Rajavi is their leader. They are officially from the MEK. These guys were officially trained by USA gov…They have the blood of thousands of Iranians on their hands. They’re an old Marxist cult, renounced Marxism only recently to receive USA aid a few yrs ago.

New Report Details Iran Regime’s Demonization Campaign Against the MEK

The regime’s hostility toward Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, and Massoud Rajavi, leader of the Iranian Resistance, is clear in the disclosed tweets. The vulgarity and crudeness masks a deep fear though. The regime spent a great deal of time, effort, and hate demonizing not only the MEK but Mrs. Rajavi specifically. These are not the actions of confident, competent leaders. These are frightened children lashing out.

  • RT @YJC_ir: What makes #Rajavi and #ISIS brothers? https://t.co/b5AVIyWbLi #No2mko #RajaviCrimes https://t.co/G8ZysjkP0m
  • RT @YJC_ir: Maryam #Rajavi openly supported #ISIS from French parliament https://t.co/pxv0oeSTrn #No2mko #RajaviCrimes https://t.co/hNGcK8W…
  • Iranian youth, young men whose roots and civilization go back to Cyrus the Great (good speech, good thought, good behavior), not Maryam Rajavi, who has ugly speech, wrong thought and terrorist behavior.
  • Why did the Saudis promote #IStandwithMaryamRajavi? They gave her money. They don’t want their investment to fail.
  • The #MEK is NOT a simple opposition group. It’s a terror organization. More than 16,000 Iranians have been killed by the People’s Mujahedin of Iran since 1979! Read again: 16,000 people!including 1 President&1 Prime Minister #BanTerrorOrg #FreeIran2018 #IStandWithMaryamRajavi https://t.co/uPkftShOxw

As the officials of Twitter stated on October 17, 2018, “It is clear that information operations and coordinated inauthentic behavior will not cease.”

The mullahs will attempt to deceive until the day they are overthrown. Let that day be soon.

Staff Writer

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