EU Conference on Iran

EU Conference on 1988 MEK Massacre and New Iran Policy

EU Conference on Iran

The EU Parliament held a conference on MEK massacre in 1988, violation of human rights, and warmongering policy of the Iranian regime on 23 October 2019 in Strasbourg

EU Conference on Iran

The EU Parliament held a conference on violation of human rights in Iran and warmongering policy of Iranian regime on 23 October, 2019 in Strasbourg

On Wednesday 23, 2019, several Members of the European Parliament and other dignitaries from across the continent, attended a conference in Strasbourg to urge the European Union to take a strong approach regarding the Iranian regime’s human rights violations and warmongering.

The speakers at the event, organized by the European Parliament Friends of a Free Iran Intergroup, also called for the Iranian regime to be held to account for the 1988 massacre of over 30,000 political prisoners, mostly members and supporters of the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI, Mujahedin-e Khalq or MEK).

Polish MEP Anna Fotyga, who chaired the conference, said:

“All of us are aware of the situation in Iran. We’ve been monitoring it for many years. We’re in touch with the members of the Iranian opposition and learn about the fate of the people who fight for freedom, for human rights and for the prosperity of their country.”

Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian opposition coalition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), also spoke at the conference to  remind us that for too long the West has “closed their eyes” to the horrible crime that was the 1988 massacre and that this lack of accountability has only emboldened the mullahs.

She said: “The only answer to a regime that has deliberately foiled the initiatives of Europe, particularly of France, is a firm policy which obliges Europe to support the Iranian people’s resistance to establish democracy and popular sovereignty.”

Alejo Vidal-Quadras, former European Parliament Vice President, also spoke out about the policy of appeasement, noting that while the mullahs benefited, the Iranian people suffered and the MEK was wrongfully placed on Western blacklists or assassinated by the Regime with impunity.

He said: “Today, the situation is different. More people have started to see the cruel nature of this theocracy… European governments need to realize the only effective policy against the Iranian regime is to deal with it for what it is: a mortal enemy that we cannot neutralize.”

Rama Yade, former French Human Rights Minister, called for an independent inquiry into the 1988 massacre and condemned the policy of appeasement for essentially giving a blank cheque to the mullahs.

She said: “We must do more. We owe it to this great nation and people. We must support the desire of the Iranian people for regime change and the establishment of a secular government based on the separation of church and state, and gender equality.”

Former MEP Struan Stevenson, the coordinator of the Campaign for Iran Change, also argued for an end to the appeasement policy, advising that those who took part in the 1988 massacre still hold high-ranking positions in the Iranian regime, including current Justice Minister Alireza Avaei.

He also highlighted the regime’s expansionism, including support for “Bashar al-Assad in Syria, the Houthis in Yemen, and the brutal Shiite militias in Iraq”,  and their race to build nuclear weapons as reasons why a new policy is needed.

He said: “Iran is also one of the most pro-western countries in the region. But they are ruled by corrupt mullahs who only want to further enhance their own lavish lifestyles. The people are sick of a regime that has bankrupted their country. Europe must show that we support the Iranian people and the MEK and NCRI. We must show support for Maryam Rajavi and her ten-point plan.”

Other speakers included:

  • Petri Sarvamaa, Finnish MEP from the EPP Group, Vice-Coordinator of the Budgetary Control Committee, Full Member of the AGRI Committee
  • Milan Zver, MEP from Slovenia.
  • Ryszard Czarnecki, MEP from Poland
  • Juan Fernando Lopez Aguilar, MEP from the Canary Islands (Spain)
  • Jan Zahradil, MEP from the Czech Republic
  • Radka Maxová, MEP from the Czech Republic
  • Stanislav Polčák, MEP from the Czech Republic
  • Ruza Tomasic, Croatian MEP from the ECR Group
  • Patrizia Toia, Italian MEP from the Democratic Party
  • Anthea McIntyre, British Conservative MEP for the West Midlands
  • Ingrid Betancourt, former Columbian presidential candidate
  • Franc Bogovič, MEP from Slovenia
  • Alessandra Moretti, MEP from Italy
  • Gianna Gancia, MEP from Italy
  • Petras Auštrevičius, MEP from Lithuania
  • Assita Kanko, MEP from Belgium

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