Free Iran

MEK Iran: The Annual Gathering of Iranian Resistance

Free Iran

The annual Free Iran gathering of the (NCRI) and (PMOI / MEK Iran)was a roaring success.

Once again, the annual Free Iran gathering was a roaring success with dozens of speakers voicing their support for the Iranian Resistance The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), and the people of Iran.

This year, the event was held online because of current COVID-19 restrictions. Former Secretary-General of the (PMOI / MEK Iran) Zohreh Akhiani and current Deputy Secretary-General of the (PMOI / MEK Iran) Rabie Mofidi opened the event, emphasizing that the gathering is representative of unity and pointing out that there are participants from across five continents.

Martin Patzelt, a member of the Human Rights Commission of the German Bundestag, emphasized that the Iranian regime is entirely incapable of change and that the people reject its leadership. He said that after 40 years of corruption and crimes against humanity, “killing and torturing the best people of the country” must end. He called on the European Union, in particular Germany, to support the peaceful alternative to the Iranian regime. He ended his speech with: “The rain and violence will pass and the sun of freedom and humanity will shine on your country.”

Theresa Payton, CEO of Fortalice LLC, Cybersecurity and Intelligence, made it very clear that Iran is one of the biggest security threats in terms of cyber warfare and that it has already instigated several attacks and campaigns. As well as international targets, the Iranian regime has also been targeting the people of Iran that it is suppressing to a high level. She also explained that the regime uses social media to portray its interventions abroad as humanitarian, for example in Iraq and Syria.

Ms. Payton said that the United States must take action immediately against this threat and that new strategies must be developed if the regime is to be stopped in its tracks. She also emphasized that the people of Iran, despite the immense suppression that they are subjected to, are continually coming up with new, creative ways to ensure that their voices are heard.

Philippe Gosselin, a member of the National Assembly in France and Vice President of the CPID Committee, thanked the participants of the event for their efforts in moving towards a free and democratic Iran. Mr. Gosselin spoke about the attempted terrorist attack on the Free Iran gathering in 2018, saying that one of the diplomats involved is currently on trial in Belgium. He said that this is “good news” and that all of the regime’s agents must be expelled.

Dr. Matthew Offord, a member of the British House of Commons, reassured the participants that 120 members of the British House of Commons and Lords are backing the people of Iran in their popular protests against the regime. He said that the United Kingdom must take steps to curb the regime’s activities, explaining that this can be done by participating in the maximum pressure campaign and supporting an extension of the arms embargo.

Mayor of Paris District 1 Jean François Legaret spoke about the “light at the end of the tunnel” – the democratic alternative to the Iranian regime. He praised the Resistance for its strength when faced with massacre and torture.

Former Foreign Minister of Poland and Member of the European Parliament Anna Fotyga said that the European Union must be more decisive when it comes to Iran, explaining that the lack of this has been a major mistake.

Members of the MEK Resistance Units were shown on video giving messages of support to Mrs. Rajavi and the Free Iran gathering as a whole. They bravely put messages of support in public places and made it clear that they are determined to see the regime fall.

Keynote speaker Mrs. Rajavi, leader of the Resistance, paid tribute to the MEK Resistance Units across the country that are keeping the voice of the people alive. She said that the most recent uprisings have put the regime in a position where it can be overthrown.

Speaking about the Iranian regime’s ire towards the people and the Resistance movement, Mrs. Rajavi said that the mullahs cannot cope with the people breaking the atmosphere of repression and the mobilization that is taking place the whole way across the country. She said that the people are “fuelling the engine of the uprisings” and are making the regime “feel the danger clearly and vividly”.

The regime has nowhere to go, she said. It cannot continue on the same path of belligerence, yet it cannot change its behavior without undermining its rule. This, Mrs. Rajavi said, is why the regime is displaying such brutality, both at home and abroad.

It would have been impossible for Mrs. Rajavi to not mention the Coronavirus health crisis that is ravaging the country. She said that the Iranian regime is entirely responsible for the death toll, as well as the destruction of the country’s health and social services.

She ended her speech with an overwhelmingly positive outlook, affirming that the Resistance is determined to restore freedom in Iran.

Next to speak was former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani, a long-time supporter of the Iranian Resistance. He said that the Resistance and the people of Iran are the biggest threat to the regime’s survival, and it knows this. He said that the regime “is on the brink” and that the only solace amid the Coronavirus health crisis in the country “is that the revolution is happening”.

He said that “regime change is within reach” and that the NCRI, led by Mrs. Rajavi, is working to make this happen. Not only will a free Iran be great news for the people, but it will also contribute to peace in the world, he said.

This Free Iran gathering was described by former US Senator Joseph Lieberman as “a historic event”, one that would not be possible without the NCRI that has the “strongest of leaders”. He said that Mrs. Rajavi and the NCRI are instrumental in a future free Iran.

Speaking about what the United States has done to advance the Resistance movement, Lieberman pointed out that the maximum pressure policy has contributed to the weakening of the regime. Action is essential to change, he said. Although foreign countries can play a role, Lieberman made it very clear that the people are the force behind this imminent regime change.

Former U.S. Senator Robert Torricelli acknowledged the voice of the people of Iran and sympathized with the struggles they are facing amid this Coronavirus pandemic. In a message to the Iranian regime, Torricelli said “the game is up”.

He called on everyone to play a role, explaining that although not everyone’s role will be the same, there is something everyone can do. “Stand with Maryam Rajavi”, he advised.

Several other prominent US figures spoke, giving their support to the Resistance and encouraging the people of Iran to continue resisting the mullahs ruling their country. Representative Lance Gooden, Representative Paul Gosar from Arizona, Senator Martha McSally, and former speaker Newt Gingrich all voiced their support for the Resistance and Mrs. Rajavi.

Gooden said that the US Congress is behind the people of Iran who deserve to be free. McSally said that the US stands with the brave people of Iran that are risking everything for their “god-given right to freedom”. Gingrich said that he is prepared to do all in his power to help the people of Iran achieve the freedom they deserve.

Several former Prime Ministers spoke at the Free Iran gathering. Mr. Khalid Yamani, a former Prime Minister of Yemen, wished the Resistance much success in freeing the people from the dictatorship that is ruling the country. Stephen Harper, a former Prime Minister of Canada, spoke about the virus that is adding to the troubles of the people. He pointed to the regime’s shameful actions of prioritizing its terrorist and nuclear activities over tackling the virus that has already killed tens of thousands of citizens in Iran.

MEP Michele Alliot Marie reminded the participants that France upholds many values that the people of Iran and the NCRI are seeking, namely peace, human rights, and democracy. She reassured the NCRI that France wants the same for the people of Iran and expressed her admiration at what the NCRI is doing for the people of Iran.

Patrick Kennedy, the former Member of the US House of Representatives, described the regime as a virus – an additional virus that the people of Iran are having to fight against. He said that the MEK and NCRI can provide the vaccinations for the virus that is the regime through its principles and that human rights and freedom will be able to “extinguish the awful insidious virus of religious fascism”.

At every annual Free Iran gathering, members of the Albanian government participate. This year was no different, and the delegation members were warmly applauded. Pandeli Majko, Minister of State and former Prime Minister of Albania said that the Ashrafis are part of the Albanian family and that the MEK is the flag of the future Iran that will be free – the flag of hope. Lulzim Basha, former Mayor of Tirana and leader of the Democratic Party of Albania, said that the country is fully behind the people of Iran against this regime that is responsible for horrific and unprovoked violence against the people. He said that participation in this event shows that people have international support. Former President and Prime Minister of Albania Sali Berisha described the Resistance movement as the only real hope of reaching a free Iran. He said he is immensely proud to support the movement and reassured the MEK that Albania is its second home.

The 81st Attorney General of the United States Michael Mukasey spoke about the Iranian regime’s track record of using diplomats to carry out terrorist activities abroad. He said that because the regime will not change its behavior, further sanctions must be put into place.

Tom Ridge, former Governor of Pennsylvania and first US Secretary of Homeland Security spoke about the major advances the Resistance has made in recent years and stated that the people of Iran are simply in pursuit of happiness.

Former FBI Director Louis Freeh said that the regime has proven itself to be untrustworthy, as we can see with the consequences of the JCPOA. He said that this should be a warning that it “cannot be trusted with another agreement”.

General Jack Keane former Vice Chief of Staff of the US Army encouraged the people of Iran, reassuring them that the regime is going to collapse and that momentum is being gained all the time because of their continuing protests in streets across Iran. He said that the people of the United States are inspired by the “raw courage” of Iranians.

Linda Chavez, former White House Director of Public Liaison, said that the most important objective to the people of Iran is freedom because they deserve civil liberties and a better economy.

John Prichard, Bishop of the Church of England, was next to speak. He said that the regime must be held to account for its abuses of human rights and called for action to end the regime’s impunity.

David Jones, a member of the British House of Commons and former Secretary of State for Wales, said that he and his colleagues “call on the UK government to stand firm against the Iranian regime” and to recognize Maryam Rajavi as “the legitimate ambassador of the Iranian people”.

Theresa Villiers, former Secretary of State for Environment and Northern Ireland and Conservative Member of Parliament, slammed the Iranian regime for using the Coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to increase repression.

The 34th Commandant of the US Marine Corps James Conway said that the NCRI has achieved so much over the past few years and called on the organization to not be discouraged and to keep its faith.

Robert Joseph, former US Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, reassured the NCRI that the regime’s end is in sight.

Reza Fallah, a former Iranian political prisoner, spoke at the event, affirming that he and many others are going to continue fighting for freedom. “The only state that takes pride in its terrorism is the mullahs’ regime. Today, the MEK resistance units of the MEK are shaking the ground beneath the feet of the mullahs. This is why the regime is taking great efforts to discredit the Iranian resistance.”

Sid Ahmed Ghozali, former Prime Minister of Algeria and John Perry, former Irish Minister, both expressed their support for the NCRI and everything that it is working towards.

Former U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte said: “The people of Iran deserve freedom from the oppression and tyranny of the mullahs. We stand with the people of Iran. We join to say loudly the mullahs must go. The people deserve a government that supports the safety and health of all people.”

Ad Melkert, former leader of Dutch Labour Party and former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, said that the campaign for justice and solidarity is ongoing and it is time for the people of Iran to be supported.

Canadian MP James Bezan said that his country needs to do more to defend freedom and democracy in Iran and said that the regime must be held accountable for its crimes.

Ingrid Betancourt, the former Presidential Candidate of Columbia, reminded the Resistance and the people of Iran that they are not alone. She said that the Free Iran gathering in itself is proof that they have support all over the world.

Speaking about tactics the regime uses to control the people, Betancourt said that it tries to convince the people that foreign powers are enemies. “Behind this is greed and corruption. War is very important to hide corruption. The mullahs are using the war to steal from the Iranian youth their time, their opportunity, their prosperity. They are using God to do evil.”

However, she said that there is some positivity in all of this. There is light showing hope and this gathering shows that the Resistance is united and is being led with resolution and determination.

Canadian MP Judy Sgro also praised Mrs. Rajavi for such “tremendous leadership” and reassured the people of Iran that “victory is near”.

President of France Liberties Foundation Gilbert Mitterrand slammed the regime for ruling through fear and terror.

Speaking about human rights, Rama Yade, former French Minister of Human Rights, called on the EU to condition trade with Iran on the improvement of human rights in Iran.

Editor-in-Chief of Al-Siyasa Newspaper, Ahmad Jar Allah, said he is looking forward to the day that Mrs. Rajavi takes the lead in Iran.

NCRI member and editor of Nabard-e-Khalq, Zinat Mirhashemi, has urged foreign powers “to remain true to the principles of human rights and international norms and to not aide and appease the regime”.

Luis Reit Ramos, Vice President of the PPE at the European Council, criticized the WHO for remaining silent about the very serious COVID-19 crisis in Iran.

Regarding actions that Italy could be making, Italian Senator Roberto Rampi said that the EU and the UN should be tougher on the Iranian regime with regards to its human rights abuses.

Sara Giacora, a college student from Slovakia, said: “I’m here to say to the brave people in Iran that we hear you and we stand with you and the MEK Resistance Units. We must work together to bring change. Let’s fight for the Iranian youth who are in the streets of Iran and the prisons. We can and must change Iran together.”

Bassam al-Amoush, Former Jordanian Minister of Administrative Development and Ambassador to Iran emphasized that the regime plunders the people’s money on terrorist organizations and activities and that it is time for the regime to fall so that Iran can have “normal relations” with its neighbors instead of conflict.

The final speaker of the evening was the Human Rights Minister of Yemen, Mohamed Askar. He finished the conference on a note of positivity saying that Mrs. Rajavi is an inspiration to Yemen and all human rights activists.

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