Author Archive

Iran Terrorism,MEK,MOIS,Terrorist Plots,The Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) in Iran

Terrorist Plots by Iranian Regime Threaten MEK and NCRI Groups Abroad

Terrorist Plots by Iranian Regime Threaten MEK and NCRI Groups Abroad

Terrorist Plots by Iranian Regime Threaten MEK and NCRI Groups Abroad

Credit to NCR-iran.org – Terrorist Plots by Iranian Regime Threaten MEK and NCRI Groups Abroad

A series of terror plots against the MEK (PMOI)has been uncovered this year. Attacks against the resistance organization have been plotted in Albania, Germany, and the United States. The Iranian regime is behind the plots, according to Albanian law enforcement agencies. A report aired on March 22nd on Albanian television, which said:

 

“Since the beginning of the month, intelligence and anti-terrorism agencies have been monitoring 10 people who are said to be able to organize terrorist activities in Albania. All Iranian citizens who enter Albania are under widespread surveillance both at the border and during their stay in Albania. Law enforcement agencies in Albania are in particular worried about Iranians who could be used by Tehran’s secret services to strike a blow to the protection of 3,000 members of the Iranian Mojahedin who are refugees in Albania.”

 

Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama responded to a question about the threats to the MEK (PMOI)refugees currently living in Albania, saying:

 

“I believe that, for MEK we did the right thing. We gave accommodation to a group which is persecuted. And that’s it. Regarding your question about security and threats, we are on the right side of history, we are in a group of countries of the Euro Atlantic club which are threatened in the same way. I believe that all these countries take measures against terrorist threats.”

 

Threats Against the MEK (PMOI)

 

The Iranian regime has stepped up their campaign to demonize and delegitimize the MEK (PMOI)since the uprising that began at the end of last year. On January 9th, Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, acknowledged the role played by the MEK (PMOI)in the recent uprising and threatened members of the resistance organization, saying, “We must speak with and enlighten those who entered the fray in the spur of the moment, including students and non-students, but the [PMOI] should be treated differently.”

 

The MEK (PMOI)has spent the past month working to prevent assassinations against its members and attacks on its offices. The MEK (PMOI)has been attacked by the regime previously, leading to the deaths of many of its members living as refugees at Camps Ashraf and Liberty. The regime appears to be planning an escalation of its campaign against the organization, which could quickly lead to terrorist attacks.

 

The Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) in Iran opted for an “operational” response to the PMOI/MEK. They decided, in part, to spy domestically on those deemed to be responsible for the protests and to plan a major attack on the PMOI/MEK, using the current capacity of the Revolutionary Guards and the Ministry of Intelligence Service (MOIS).

 

The Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported that Hassan Rouhani, the regime’s president, called French President Emmanuel Macron on January 2nd to demand that he take action against MEK (PMOI)members currently in exile in France for so-called “terrorist” activities against the regime. President Macron refused. French newspaper, Le Figaro, responded to this call, writing, “In the Elysée it is said that we have never had discussions with the Iranians where the issue of the Mojahedin has not been at some point mentioned to us.”

 

Suspicious activities, such as reconnoitering, photographing and mock parking maneuvers, have been reported in Berlin and Washington, D.C. outside of the offices of the National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI), of which the MEK (PMOI)is a member. Relevant officials have been informed of possible terrorist strikes.

 

On March 22nd of this year, Albanian law enforcement arrested two Iranian operatives suspected of terrorist activities in Albania. These agents claimed to be journalists. The Albanian news reported:

 

“These two Iranian citizens were arrested for further investigation by anti-terrorism agencies after information was received from Albania’s international partners stating that they were planning to carry out a terrorist operation.”

 

The MOIS frequently has its operatives pose as journalists. On July 9, 2017, Ali Fallahian, a former Iranian Intelligence Minister, said:

 

“In order to gather intelligence, the Intelligence Ministry uses various covers both inside the country and abroad. We don’t send an intelligence agent to Germany or to the US to say ‘I’m from the Intelligence Ministry.’ It’s necessary for them to operate under covers such as traders or journalists.”
The regime’s hostility toward the MEK (PMOI)is well-documented. As protests continue in Iran against the repressive theocracy, it is expected that their campaign to demonize the MEK (PMOI)will continue to escalate.

Staff Writer

 

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Kazerun,MEK,Shaheen Gobadi

Iran MEK: Kazerun Protests Continue Despite Heavy Security Measures

Iran MEK: Kazerun Protests Continue Despite Heavy Security Measures

Iran MEK: Kazerun Protests Continue Despite Heavy Security Measures

Iran MEK: Kazerun Protests Continue Despite Heavy Security Measures

On April 20, protesters in the city of Kazerun took to the streets for the fifth consecutive day. The people of Kazerun are protesting the regime’s plan to split the city into two pieces. Thousands of residents have turned out for days of demonstrations, including many of the city’s youth and a large number of women. Protesters came out for the demonstrations despite the presence of heavily-armed anti-riot forces.

During the five days of protests in the Shohada (martyrs) square, demonstrators have chanted a number of slogans at the suppressive forces sent to quell the uprising. Among them were:

“Here’s the dignity of the people of Kazerun!”

“God is great, with such dignity by the people!”

“Honorable Iranians, support us!”

“Honorable Kazerun, hail to your dignity!”

“Our state TV is a disgrace!”

“We are ready to defend Kazerun.”

Do not be afraid, do not be afraid, we are all together!”

“We swear to the blood of the martyrs that we shall gather every day at the martyrs’ square!”

“We do not accept humiliation!”

“While our enemy is right here, they keep saying America is the enemy!”

“We are the men and women of battle; we fight against the separation plan!”

In an earlier statement, Kazerun’s Friday Prayers leader said that the regime had decided to pause its plan to divide the city. He and the fake city council went on to order the protesters to disperse and to forbid them from gathering until a final plan is made for the city. Protesters have ignored these words and have continued their demonstrations, demanding that their governor responds to the protests.

Shahin Gobadi, a member of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI)’s Foreign Affairs Committee posted a video clip provided by MEK network inside Iran on his Twitter Account:

 Residents of Kazerun are opposed to the regime’s plan to split their city, saying that the move is a misguided attempt to resolve problems resulting from years of corruption and mismanagement.

Staff Writer

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Iran Protests,Isfahan,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,ProfessorIvan Sascha Sheehan

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

Recent Protests Mark a New Era for Iran’s Opposition

The continuation of recent protests despite the Iranian regime’s repressive measures, including mass arrests, the killing of protesters, and torture, shows that these protests have taken on a different, more resolute tone. Rather than protesting individual incidents, like the 2009 protests, the nation-wide protests that have rocked Iran since December have been directed at the regime itself and its repressive reign of terror.

Prof. Ivan Sascha Sheehan is the incoming Executive Director of the School of Public & International Affairs at the University of Baltimore, and an award-winning scholar and Iran expert. He has published a very comprehensive analysis of the recent uprisings in Iran, the reasons for their continuation and the differences between these protest with their predecessors like the 2009 uprisings in Iran. Given the continuation of the protests, a summary of this study has been reported below:

The spread of discontent

At the end of December 2017 and the beginning of January 2018, Iran experienced the largest national uprising since 2009. What started as localized and isolated protests in Mashhad, quickly spread to 142 cities and towns in all 31 of Iran’s provinces.

Although this initial wave of disruption has ended, since January 2018, a steady stream of protests has continued to erupt across the country. In February, another wave of protests broke out in the capital over the mandatory wearing of the hijab. Then, at the beginning of April, farmers took up their shovels to protest the mismanagement of water resources, leading a fresh round of protests which have since spread to five major cities.

Like the most recent farmer’s protest in Isfahan, the national uprisings in December were ignited by a triggering incident. In December, rising prices of staple food products ignited civil unrest. Also, like the most recent Isfahan protests, the triggering incident was soon marginalized, and the protests took on a more political tone, with anger and frustrations directed squarely at Rouhani’s repressive regime.

This regime-targeted anger sets these most recent protests apart from their predecessors. It indicates that public appetite has shifted from temporary protests directed at individual policies, to widespread anger with the entire regime.

This has been most apparent in the slogans adopted by the protestors. Protesters across the country engaged in chants of “down with Rouhani” and “down with Khamenei”, along with “Khamenei is a killer, his rule is illegitimate” and “we will fight to wrest back our country Iran.” These demonstrate the full extent of public dissatisfaction. The chants did not reflect the initial trigger of the protests; the rising price of eggs. They indicated a strong public desire for regime change, unlike anything Iran has seen before.

In his article, Professor Sheehan noted that the demographic that took part in the most recent rounds of protests were also of interest. He wrote, “the overwhelming majority of those who engaged in the uprising were from poor and underprivileged backgrounds”. This is particularly damaging for the mullahs. They have always maintained that they are “the defenders of the abased”. Previous protests, like those in 2009, featured a majority middle-class demographic. However, the most recent protests indicate that both the poor and middle-classes alike are angry at the regime and there is discontent across all segments of the Iranian population.

Sheehan describes how the recent protests have been effective at uniting people from all walks of life. Women, farmers, rich and poor all walked together. This also extended to ethnic unity. People from Iran’s multitude of ethnicities showed solidarity against the regime. The slogans adopted by protestors had no ethnic undertones. They showed a united Iranian population with one Iranian identity. From Kurds to Balochs, the entire spectrum of Iran’s rich population joined the protests.

These protests also challenged the very heart of the clerical regime. The December protests began in Mashhad and quickly spread to Qom within a matter of hours. These two cities have traditionally been regime strongholds. With discontent spreading to these “bastions of the clerical rule”, the regime must know it’s very survival is under threat.

The violent response

The extent of the threat to the Iranian regime from this new generation of protests is apparent in its aggressive response. The government officially states 22 protestors were killed in response to the protests. However, opposition groups, like the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), assert the figure is closer to 50.

The head of the Iranian Prisons Organisation said the government arrested 4,972 protestors. Again, opposition groups have claimed that this figure is a vast understatement, putting the true number of arrested protestors at around 8,000.

Although the government arrested a significant number of protestors, Sheehan suggests there were indications that the December protests stretched the regime’s military force to its limits. In 2009, the government was able to restore order through the deployment of one IRGC division to each province and two divisions to Tehran. However, the 2017/2018 protests spread too fast and were too geographically dispersed for the IRGC to immediately bring them under control. The protests raged for ten days and, according to Professor Sheehan, after the first day had “no element of surprise and all the details of the protests including locations and times were announced in advance on social media”.

This indicates the IRGC was stretched beyond its capabilities. It could not prevent or stop well-advertised protests from occurring, and once they had sprung up, could not bring the situation under control for ten days. There was also chaos within the IRGC and the Basij militia. Reports of soldiers burning their membership cards and joining the protestors have emerged.

This will have far-reaching consequences moving forward. The protests showed the Iranian people that the regime and its IRGC are not invincible and cannot establish control when all segments of the population protest in unison.

Why are the protests gaining momentum now?

The timing of the protests is also significant. The protests have evolved and become more threatening now because of the regime’s own failings. The extension of Khamenei’s control over the Iranian economy has left many individuals in conditions of financial hardship. The nuclear agreement with the US unfroze tens of billions of dollars, but the average Iranian is no better off.

This is because more than 50% of Iran’s GDP is now under state control. The private sector has been marginalized, inflation is still high, and unemployment remains in double digits, particularly among Iran’s youth, which has unemployment levels of up to 50% in some areas.

Nepotism and corruption are strangling social mobility. Graduates from the country’s top universities are performing manual labor and washing dishes, while the children of the country’s elite secure the top jobs.

The regime’s spending has also left many communities deprived of basic social needs. Iran’s healthcare spending is approximately a third of its military spending. Tehran has prioritized spending on foreign military and extremist groups overspending on the basic social needs of its population. The regime has created the discontent that has fuelled these anti-government protests by neglecting its population.

Beyond neglecting its population, the regime has extorted money from them through manipulation and deceit. The regime lured middle and lower-income Iranian people into investing in government institutions under the promise of high investment returns. These investments were embezzled into Rouhani’s regime, leaving the institutions bankrupt and many Iranian’s without their life savings. The regime’s deceit impacted a large segment of the population and has contributed to the discontent of a large segment of the Iranian population.

The economy shows no sign of improving, and in many parts, could get a lot worse. The regime’s looting of Iran’s financial institutions means that several principal banks face imminent bankruptcy. Should these banks bottom out, more of the Iranian population will find themselves without their savings, looking to vent their frustrations at the regime that left them penniless.

Increased connectivity and mobile penetration have also contributed to the evolution of the Iranian protest movement and the emergence of a new breed of protest. The movement is more organized and efficient. Half of the Iranian population now uses the instant messaging service, Telegram. It was essential in facilitating the mobilization of the population in the December and January protests and in the coordination and spread of civil unrest.

The role of MEK in Protests

In his report, Prof. Sheehan discusses another reason for the increased momentum and success of the public protests in Iran, which is the presence of an organized and structured opposition movement. He emphasized that leaderless movements are easier to curb and eradicate through the use of government intimidation and oppression. “The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), lead by Maryam Rajavi, has been a lightning rod for opponents to the Iranian regime”. The MEK’s continued presence in Iran helps mobilize and inspire the population into organized resistance.

The MEK has also played an integral role in bringing the full extent of the regime’s atrocities to light. It has worked tirelessly to shed light on the regime’s massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988 and the officials involved. It also exposed the location of nuclear weapons research facilities and the progress of the regimes nuclear weapon development program.

Without the MEK, the full extent of the regime’s atrocities and crimes may never have been exposed to the Iranian public. It provides a constant voice for the opposition and a beacon for the nation’s youth who are dissatisfied with the status quo and eager to be a part of the opposition.

Prof. Sheehan reiterates that the MEK has played a key role and been a driving force behind the spread of recent protest movements. It is one of the few organizations that provides comprehensive coverage of the protests, broadcasting video clips and giving interviews to international media outlets. Its coverage of the protests undoubtedly contributed to the spread of the protests and will be a driving force in the re-emergence of protests in the near future.

 Changing international attitudes

Not only did the December and January protests represent a new dawn for Iranian opposition, but they also represented a new dawn in international attitudes towards the Iranian regime. Before the protests, Prof. Sheehan describes how the prevailing thought in the west and among international leaders was that the Iranian poor supported the regime. They believed Tehran had effectively suppressed the opposition and enjoyed unrivalled dominance and control over the population. The west also believed the easing of economic sanctions would provide a cash windfall for the Iranian people and reduce their appetite for dissent.

The 2017/2018 protests challenged these assertions. They showed that the population was harboring ill sentiment towards the regime and crying out for an opportunity to express its discontent. Sheehan alluded to a new school of thought that is reinterpreting Iran’s support for foreign militias not as a sign of strength, but as a sign of weakness. He said it is “maintained to cover up the shortcomings and failures at home.”

In the international community, the effectiveness and magnitude of the December and January protests have led to a reinterpretation of the situation in Iran. Maryam Rajavi, leader of the MEK, offered some insight into the situation. She said, “Iranian society is simmering with discontent and the international community is finally getting closer to the reality that appeasing the ruling theocracy is misguided.”

The future

In the wake of these ground-breaking developments, Sheehan asserts that we may see an increasingly firmer stance taken by the international community, particularly from the Trump administration.

The MEK in opposition will continue to work tirelessly to organize outlets for the disheartened population to vent their frustrations. The MEK has supported the establishment of secret centers of resistance which will connect like-minded protestors and attempt to orchestrate the downfall of the repressive regime.

This platform of an organized opposition taking practical steps towards regime change provides the Iranian population with the best possible chance of success. It puts the mullahs and Rouhani in the difficult position where they have no option but carry out widespread reforms or face the collapse of their regime under the weight of public discontent. Given Rouhani’s reluctance to reform, we can conclude that protests will continue and intensify.

Prof. Sheehan’s article vividly depicts the changing Iranian political landscape. It demonstrates that is has been irreversibly altered by the December and January protests. The regime cannot afford to continue with its repressive ways without acknowledging public frustrations. The next wave of protests will be louder, larger and more powerful and the regime will soon be unable to maintain a grip on power.

Last year, Maryam Rajavi summed it up. She told a crowd gathered in Paris that “the light of change is shining on Iran.” These protests have shown the world that light and demonstrated that the Iranian regime is staring down the barrel of collapse.

Staff Writer

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Isfahan,MEK,water rights

Mass Arrests in Isfahan as Protests Continue across Iran

Mass Arrests in Isfahan as Protests Continue across Iran

Mass Arrests in Isfahan as Protests Continue across Iran

Mass Arrests in Isfahan as Protests Continue across Iran

Demonstrators continue to take to the streets across Iran to protest its oppressive regime. Economic issues have powered many of the recent demonstrations, as citizens of all walks of life protest the corruption of the ruling regime.

 

The regime has attempted to quell the protests with mass arrests and suppressive forces rather than address the concerns of the Iranian people. On April 15th, the Khorasgan people in Isfahan  saw their houses attacked in the dead of night by suppressive forces hoping to prevent the protests from spreading. Farmers and youths in the city were arrested as part of this suppressive action.

 

Repressive forces maintained a presence of fear and intimidation in the city in a failed attempt to prevent further demonstrations. Anti-riot mercenaries traveling in twenty cars and four buses were dispatched to the city to stop the protests by the people of Varzaneh, MEK network inside Iran reported.

 

Despite these intimidation tactics, farmers in Isfahan met at Khourasgan Square and Abazar Avenue on Saturday to protest, with chants of: “Imprisoned farmers should be freed! Farmer dies, but does not accept humiliation! We are the women and men of battle, we get back our right to water!”

 

Demonstrators are raising their voices to protest a number of issues. In Khuzestan province, villagers from Jofair in Hoveizeh protested for the right to use water from Jofair Project.

 

In Ahvaz and Shushtar, protesters demanded the return of their looted deposits from the Arman Vahdat governmental institution. In Mashhad, a rally was held by the people looted by Caspian institute outside the Pamchal branch in Sajjad Boulevard.

 

In Tehran, Tarbiat Modarres University students protested corruption at their school, including looting the University’s budget, the illegal evacuation of dormitories, and renting university facilities, such as gyms and swimming pools, for profit.

 

In Yazd, health center workers protested months of having their salaries unpaid. They also protested their lack of job security.

 

In Yasuj, families of the victims of the fatal Asman airlines crash last year met at the Red Crescent building to protest the ruling government’s failure to recover the bodies of crash victims. They called on Tehran to find and return their families’ bodies.

 

In Tabriz, fans of the Tractor-Sazi team protested the team’s executive manager, Ajorlu, and suppressive acts against the team and its fans.

 

In several cities, including Qazvin, Kerman and Yazd, educational services purchase plan teachers demonstrated in front of Ministry of Education offices for the second time, asking for payment of their salaries and full insurance. They also demanded to be paid the same as official employees.

 

Protesters employed a variety of strategies to express their anger at the ruling regime. Protesters in Ahvaz blocked the doors of Arman Vahdat, the governmental institution that stole their deposits, with mud. In Shushtar, victims of Arman Vahdat forced employees out of the building and closed it. Other demonstrators carried signs condemning the actions of the regime and chanted slogans.

 

The uprising, which began in December of last year, continues in the form of widespread protests. The Iranian regime has yet to silence the voices of its people.

Laura Carnahan

 

 

 

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Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee,Iran Prisons,Political prisoner

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee Passes 70th Day of Hunger Strike

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee Passes 70th Day of Hunger Strike

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee Passes 70th Day of Hunger Strike

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee Passes 70th Day of Hunger Strike

Political prisoner Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee remains hospitalized in Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Baghyatollah Hospital in Tehran after a hunger strike that has stretched past 70 days. Since entering the hospital, Ms. Iraee has refused intravenous nutrition, stating that she wishes to continue her hunger strike.

 

Ms. Iraee was arrested by police and suppressive forces after they raided her house and conducted a warrantless search. Among the items found during this search were private and unpublished writings, which were used as evidence against her in court. The presiding judge in her case called her writing “offensive to Islam” and sentenced her to six years in prison for “insulting Islam.”

 

Ms. Iraee, began her hunger strike in objection to her illegal transfer from Evin Prison to Qarchak prison (criminal ward), for expressing support for last December’s national uprisings in Iran. The former chicken farm is overcrowded, and its prisoners are subjected to appalling conditions, including lack of food and clean water, no access to medical care, and poor ventilation. Violence in the facility is rampant, and there have been reports of violence between prisoners as well as frequent attacks by wardens.

 

After 70 days of hunger striking, Ms. Iraee has lost almost 50 pounds and faints often. Other health problems, including swollen legs and kidney issues, further endanger her life.

 

On April 8th, Ms. Iraee’s father was finally allowed to visit her in the hospital after being previously turned away.  Security conditions were heavy during the visit, during which Ms. Iraee expressed her intention to continue her strike.

 

Hunger strikes have become common among political prisoners in Iran, who often feel that they have no other way to raise their voices against the oppressive regime. Harsh prison sentences and torture are routine for those who speak against the fundamentalist mullahs currently in power. Ms. Iraee was punished not for public speech or actions, but for her private writings.

 

Many prisoners at Gohardasht Prison in Karaj and the Central Prison of Orumiyeh in northwestern Iran have sent letters of support to Ms. Iraee as she continues her protest. In their letters, they lauded her resilience and strength in the face of oppression.

 

The ruling regime has responded to the recent widespread uprising with harsh attempts to suppress its citizens, but the people continue to demand change. During the recent uprising, people chanted “down with the Supreme Leader” and “down with Rouhani”. Despite efforts of the Iranian regime to silence the people, the cries for freedom have become too loud to ignore.

Staff Writer

 

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Suicide rate in Iran,Women,Youth

Suicide Rate in Iran Continues to Rise

Suicide Rate in Iran Continues to Rise

Suicide Rate in Iran Continues to Rise

Suicide Rate in Iran Continues to Rise

Suicide has become a public health crisis in Iran, as more and more Iranians, especially women and youth, take their own lives. The suicide rate for Iranian women is the highest in the Middle East and is rapidly approaching epidemic levels. Why are Iranians, specifically Iranian women, turning to such desperate measures?

 

State media reported that the rate of suicide attempts by women rose by 66 percent over a five year period and by 71 percent for men. It is likely that the state underreports suicides, so the increase is probably much higher. This dramatic increase in suicide attempts speaks to the current conditions in Iran under an oppressive theocracy. When women are denied the equality they know they are entitled to, they lose hope. Women in Iran are well-aware that they are being oppressed by a tyrannical regime that places no value on their lives or well-being. They have been deprived of a voice to protest this unfairness. It is no wonder that many women feel so powerless that they turn to suicide.

 

Just this month, three women died by suicide in a three day period. On April 4th, a 68-year-old woman in the Kouy-e Naft District of Ahwaz self-immolated. On April 5th, a 24-year-old woman in Kamraniyeh leaped to her death from an apartment complex. Then on April 6th, a college student in the Province of Khuzistan hanged herself.

 

These deaths are part of a systemic pattern of oppression that denies women the power to advocate for their own rights or happiness. Women are limited in their employment and social opportunities, leaving them without a sense of autonomy or any outlet to express their talents or desires. This leads to depression and despair, sometimes culminating in suicide.

 

Stories of daily oppression by women in Iran are shockingly commonplace. Last year, a girl was arrested and beaten on her 14th birthday for the crime of wearing ripped jeans. Two other women in the city of Dezful were arrested for riding a motorcycle. The women “committed an act against revolutionary norms and values by riding a motorcycle,” according to local police. These stories are emblematic of a larger issue in Iran. Women are not allowed basic autonomy of their bodies or actions.

 

Further, the regime’s fondness for executions affects the well-being of every man, woman, and child living in Iran. Since January of 2017, the Iranian regime has executed one of its citizens every eight hours. Under this regime of terror, no one is spared the constant fear of death. The mullahs show no hesitation in executing dissidents and people convicted of minor offenses, going so far as to execute numerous juveniles.

 

As long as the current regime remains in power, suicide will continue to be a part of the reality of daily life in Iran. In addition to misogynistic laws, a culture of oppression permeates every aspect of life in Iran. Income inequality and poverty are widespread issues that rob the people of Iran of hope.

 

Despite the regime’s attempts to suppress the spirit of its people, Iranian citizens have begun to rise up and demand change. Iranians are tired of a system that leads so many to death at their own hands. They are ready for democracy, freedom, and equality.

Staff Writer

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Iran Protests,Isfahan,Maryam Rajavi,MEK

Protests Continue to Rage Across Isfahan and Beyond

Protests Continue to Rage Across Isfahan and Beyond

Protests Continue to Rage Across Isfahan and Beyond

Protests Continue to Rage Across Isfahan and Beyond

Last week’s protests continue to rage in Isfahan province. Protestors from all walks of life took to the streets and demonstrated from Khorasgan Square, Jay Street and Ahmadabad Square in Isfahan.

The protestors gathered in overwhelming numbers, women vented their frustrations with the crowd, the nation’s youth protested for a brighter future, and farmers took up their shovels and chanted with their fellow compatriots.

The noise was rousing. Chants of “Rouhani the liar” and “shameless authorities, they are thirsty for the blood of the nation,” rang out across the province in a chorus of defiance against the repressive Iranian regime.

What ignited the protests?

Hundreds of farmers have complained about the lack of water available. Their livelihoods are under threat as drought racks the Iranian agricultural sector. What water is available, is denied to the farmers. The corruption and mismanagement of water resources from the Iranian regime have exacerbated the problem and left many rural communities without water for their crops.

Government officials are taking bribes in exchange for diverting water sources to neighboring regions. In Isfahan province, its main river has seen its flow diverted to neighboring Yazd province, leaving the region dry and the citizens unable to grow their crops.

The regime is trying to curb the spread of dissent

As the protests spread and more citizens took to the streets, inspired by the farmer’s courage and relishing the opportunity to vent their frustrations with the Iranian regime, the authorities attempted to block their path to the farmers. They erected barriers and parked cars to stop the magnitude of protestors from swelling.

However, there is little the regime can do to delay the inevitable. The determination of the brave farmers in Isfahan quickly inspired others to mount their own protests. In Tehran, Rasht, Ahvaz, Mashhad, Kerman and Ardebil, members of the cities institutions that have seen their finances looted by the regime joined the civil unrest sweeping across the country.

Maryam Rajavi praised the brave farmers and other citizens that defy the regime

The leader of Iran’s opposition (MEK), Maryam Rajavi, praised the farmers of Isfahan for their perseverance and determination. She also expressed solidarity with the urban population’s dissent.

Maryam Rajavi said, “hail to my fellow Iranians in Tehran, Mashhad, Rasht, Ahwaz, Kerman, Koohdasht, and Pars Abad Moghan, who staged demonstrations in protest against their assets being looted by institutions affiliated with the Iranian regime.”

The only way to bring an end to the Iranian regime’s tyranny is to show Rouhani and the world that the Iranian people stand in opposition to the regime. Maryam Rajavi and all those in opposition must stand together in the face of adversity. Like the farmers in Isfahan province, we must demonstrate that our determination is unwavering, and our perseverance to regime change is limitless.

Staff Writer

 

 

 

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Ana Gomes,MEK,MOIS

32 MEPs Sign Statement Opposing Smear Campaign by Iranian Regime

35 MEPs Sign Statement Opposing Smear Campaign by Iranian Regime

32 MEPs Sign Statement Opposing Smear Campaign by Iranian Regime

35 MEPs Sign Statement Opposing Smear Campaign by Iranian Regime

On Monday, 35 Members of European Parliament (MEP), including the parliament’s Vice-President, submitted a statement to EP President, Antonio Tajani, opposing the April 10th meeting on the floor of Parliament organized by a pro-Iranian regime MEP. The meeting, entitled “Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) Threat in Albania” was organized by Portuguese MEP Ana Gomes and is part of the most recent smear campaign against the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI) or Mojahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) by the Iranian ruling regime.

 

The meeting was held as Iran’s regime continues to push back against the PMOI/MEK after a large-scale uprising in Iran in December 2017/January 2018.  The regime placed the blame for the uprising on the PMOI/MEK, which organized the demonstrations. The regime is also still angry about the successful relocation of almost 3,000 PMOI/MEK members from camps in Iraq to Albania in 2016 and has launched a new campaign to spread false and malicious information about the main opposition in an attempt to discredit and demonize the organization.

 

Among the invited guests to the April 10th meeting was Anne Singleton, who was recruited to Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) specifically to vilify the PMOI/MEK. She was previously denied the opportunity to stage similar meetings in European and British parliaments. She also traveled to Iraq several times to spread false information about the PMOI members residing in Iraq at Camps Ashraf and Liberty.

 

The PMOI/MEK refugees have since been relocated to Albania, prompting the Iranian regime to use their proxies to attack their credibility there in a continued attempt to demonize the organization.

 

The MEPs said in their statement, “[W]e were shocked to learn of a meeting to be held on 10 April in the European Parliament titled ‘Mojahedin-E Khalq (MEK) Threat in Albania’ with the attendance of several well-known agents and lobbyists of the regime. The news of this meeting has been publicized in several websites affiliated to the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS).”

 

Signers of the statement included MEPs from Belgium, France, the U.K., Spain, Austria, Sweden, Poland, Estonia, Ireland, Bulgaria, Hungry, Finland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Slovenia. The statement expressed concern that the meeting took place and that Iranian operatives were invited, guests. Further, the signers condemn[ed] the Iranian regime’s misinformation campaign against the Iranian democratic opposition.”

Staff Writer

 

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Ana Gomes,MEK,MOIS

Anna Gomes, MEP attends Habilian (MOIS) meeting during her recent visit to Tehran (February 2018)

Agents of Iranian Regime Using European Parliament to Threaten Security of Iranian Refugees in Albania

Anna Gomes, MEP attends Habilian (MOIS) meeting during her recent visit to Tehran (February 2018)

Anna Gomes, MEP attends Habilian (MOIS) meeting during her recent visit to Tehran (February 2018)

The Iranian regime’s animosity toward the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI/MEK) is well-established. On April 8, Struan Stevenson, Coordinator of the Campaign for Iran Change (CIC), reported that the regime is using the European Parliament as political cover for further action against PMOI/MEK members in Albania.

The Iranian refugees were relocated from Camp Ashraf and Camp Liberty in Iraq after an extended campaign by supporters in the U.S. and Europe in an effort to protect the MEK camp residents from continued attacks coordinated by the Iranian regime. Iran’s mullahs were enraged by this action, having waged a longstanding smear campaign against the PMOI/MEK to delegitimize the resistance organization and prevent their safe relocation to Albania.

Now the regime is pushing back against the PMOI/MEK again after a nationwide uprising in Iran in December 2017/January 2018. The Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported that on January 2, 2018, President Hassan Rouhani called French President, Emmanuel Macron, and accused the PMOI/MEK, currently based in Paris, of organizing the uprising. In this call, Rouhani asked Macron to take action against the PMOI/MEK and Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, leader of the Iranian opposition. President Macron declined this request. On January 9, 2018, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, officially acknowledged the PMOI’s role in the uprising and implicitly threatened the protesters who were arrested during the demonstrations with execution.

The regime’s appointment of Gholam Hossein Mohammad Nia and Mostafa Roodaki, two senior officials of the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS), as the ambassador and first secretary of the embassy in Tirana, is a troubling development. Tehran is currently using them, along with the Habilian Center and the Didban Institute, to vilify the MEK. Both of these organizations are flimsy covers for branches of the MOIS in Albania. Albanian citizens have been recruited by these groups to demonize the PMOI through media outlets they have purchased.

More disturbingly, on March 22, 2018, two Iranians were arrested by Albanian police after evidence was uncovered that they were possibly preparing terrorist acts. Ten more people were questioned about their involvement, and the MEK was listed as a potential target of their plot.

The threat to the safety of PMOI/MEK members continues to grow as the Iranian regime repeats its strategy of vilification of the resistance group. Past campaigns have led to multiple deaths and assaults on the PMOI/MEK. Two Iranian dissidents were assassinated in Turkey and the Netherlands in 2017, and new threats against the PMOI/MEK activists were uncovered in 2017 and 2018 by Western security services.

The next stage of the smear campaign against the Iranian opposition is set to occur on April 10, 2018. Ana Gomes, a pro-Iran Portuguese MEP, has scheduled a meeting in European Parliament titled “Mojahedin e-Khalq (MEK) a threat in Albania.” Ms. Gomes’ history of animosity toward the PMOI/MEK dates back to April 2007, when she introduced a series of resolutions to European Parliament which would have endangered the residents of Camp Ashraf and Camp Liberty. Her actions were criticized by members of both the European and British parliaments at the time and ultimately failed.

Ms. Gomes has continued to make false and malicious statements about the PMOI/MEK and to meet with pro-Iranian regime groups.  She has invited Anne Singleton (Khodabandeh), an Iranian agent exposed by a US Pentagon & Library of Congress report in December 2012, to speak at the upcoming meeting in European Parliament. Singleton has a history of working with the Iranian regime to defame the Iranian opposition.

Other invited speakers at the April 10th meeting include Olsi Jazexhi and Migena Balla, a pro-Iranian regime couple from Albania, and Vanna Vannuccini, an Italian journalist currently living in Iran who is a staunch supporter of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The upcoming meeting in European Parliament is great cause for concern. Iranian intelligence was expelled from Europe in a 1997 decision by the European Parliament, and this decision should apply to the listed pro-Iranian theocracy invitees. We call upon the European Parliament to strengthen their implementation of this decision and prevent these agents of the Iranian regime from speaking their false rhetoric in European Parliament.

Staff Writer

 

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Iran Opposition,Iran Protests,John Bolton,MEK,Regime Change

John Bolton represents a new chapter in US-Iran relations

John Bolton represents a new chapter in US-Iran relations

John Bolton represents a new chapter in US-Iran relations

John Bolton represents a new chapter in US-Iran relations

Donald Trump’s appointment of John Bolton as the president’s national security adviser is a strong indication of the stance Trump will adopt towards the Iran deal. The president has until May 12th to amend the Iran nuclear deal with his Chinese, European and Russian partners. John Bolton’s tough, no-nonsense approach will be a valuable addition to the negotiations.

Who is John Bolton?

John Bolton is a highly principled adviser with experience in the Reagan and George W. Bush administrations. He was undersecretary for Arms Control from 2001 to 2005 and also completed a brief spell as ambassador to the United Nations, where he promoted non-proliferation resolutions towards North Korea and Iran.

He has previously been a prominent supporter of regime change in Iran and expressed solidarity with the Iranian opposition, the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK). He spoke at a MEK-organised event in Paris last year where he discussed the importance of regime change in Tehran.

He is a shrewd adviser with a deep knowledge of the balance of power and influence around the globe. His experience in both the UN and previous presidential administrations has also equipped him with a comprehensive understanding of governmental bureaucracy. In what is arguably the most influential position in the US foreign policy mechanism, he should be able to bring US foreign policy to apply further pressure to the oppressive Iranian regime.

Bolton represents a new chapter in US policy towards Iran

Rather than persist with the decades-old policy of appeasement towards the Iranian government, Bolton’s appointment could indicate the beginning of a firmer policy towards Iran.

The Iranian regime has been uncooperative to demands from the international community. Bolton would prefer to take a more aggressive stance with Hassan Rouhani. While he does not advocate military intervention, he would prefer to see tougher sanctions that would leave Rouhani’s regime with no other option but to comply and abandon their hard-line, disruptive policies, or face economic ruin.

This would bring US policy into alignment with the position of the Iranian people

Recent MEK-organised demonstrations show the appetite of the Iranian people for change. Tens of thousands of protestors flooded the streets across the country demanding regime change. This was just the beginning. Maryam Rajavi, MEK leader and president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), has called for the new year to be a “year full of uprisings”.

It is in the interests of the United States to adopt a stance towards the Iranian regime that reflects the will of the Iranian public. The mullahs in Iran have tried to suppress the democratic message of the MEK. However, it is now resonating across Iran’s rural and urban populations.

The MEK also enjoys bipartisan support across the US Congress and Senate. Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, Howard Dean and Bill Richardson have all expressed solidarity with the MEK and supported regime change in Iran. Senior advisers in the Obama administration, like James Jones, also advocated a tougher stance against Hassan Rouhani’s government. With both the Iranian public and both sides of the House demanding a tougher attitude towards the Iranian regime, the time is right for Trump to adjust the position of the White House.

John Bolton might be the man to steer the US ship towards regime change in Iran. The title of his memoir, Surrender Is Not an Option, says it all. In Iran, surrender is not an option. The stakes are too high. The people have spoken. They want regime change. Now it is time for the international communities to help bring the will of the people to fruition. The days of US appeasement to Iran may be numbered. It is time to usher in a new chapter in US-Iran relations.

 

 

 

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