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Ali Safavi

The Regime’s Crackdown on the MEK Only Serves to Demonstrate Its Effectiveness

Ali Safavi

Archive photo- Ali Safavi, member of NCRI’s FAC, during an interview with FoxNews- April 2019

Ali Safavi of the National Council of Resistance of Iran’s (NCRI) Foreign Affairs Committee penned an op-ed article in Lima Charlie World. Within the piece, he demonstrates that the Iranian regime’s crackdown on the opposition movement stems from the movement’s rapidly increasing support among the Iranian people.

The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), Iran’s largest and most popular opposition group, has played a central role in organizing protests and mobilizing the Iranian public against the clerical regime.

A Group Under Attack

Its relentless commitment to protecting the human rights of Iranian people has put it in the regime’s crosshairs. As a result, the regime has sought to demonize, discredit, attack, murder and terrorize the MEK. In 2018, the regime launched a string of terror attacks and assassination attempts against the group.

The clerical regime attempted to bomb the group’s annual Grand Gathering in Paris, an event attended by more than 100,000 MEK supporters from across the world. In another incident, the regime attempted to bomb the MEK’s compound in Albania during the Iranian New Year celebrations.

“Tehran routinely refers to the MEK as an “existential threat” and subjects sympathizers to prison, torture, and death by hanging,” Safavi writes. He described how since 1979 the Iranian regime has executed more than 100,000 political opponents, many of whom were MEK members.

In the summer of 1988 alone, the regime systematically rounded up and executed more than 30,000 MEK members and sympathizers.

Unashamed

The regime has begun publicly acknowledging the threat the MEK poses to its future in power. Regime officials have also begun publicly referring to the violent crackdowns and efforts to curb the opposition’s activities.

In April 2019, Mahmoud Alavi, the Minister of the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) publicly confirmed that the regime had “confronted” and “dealt with” 116 MEK resistance units across Iran in the last twelve months.

Later the same month, the MOIS Director General for East Azerbaijan Province announced that 60 MEK members had been arrested as part of a crackdown.

East Azerbaijan Intelligence Official Claims 60 MEK Units Arrested in 2018, 50 More Were “Briefed”

In Tehran, just weeks ago, a MEK member was sentenced to death. Three others received prison sentences for engaging in peaceful demonstrations against the regime.

These comments reflect “a small sample” of the true numbers of MEK activists languishing behind bars, Safavi writes.

Lashing Out

The recent crackdown, Safavi argues, illustrates that the regime is becoming increasingly nervous. “That is why it is on the hunt for anyone associated with the MEK,” he writes.

The regime has employed the same strategy before. When it was threatened in 2009 by a wave of public protests and outcry, it hanged MEK supporters.

The regime used an extensive demonization campaign to justify its violence against the MEK. The regime has accused the MEK and its president-elect, Maryam Rajavi, of being involved in terrorist acts. “Yet, a French investigative magistrate concluded after an eight-year investigation that the MEK’s military operations, which were unilaterally halted in 2001, were not terrorism, but rather resistance against tyranny,” Safavi writes.

MEK Will Not Be Silenced

The MEK is expanding its operations. It has established “Units of Rebellion” across Iran, each one committed to confronting the regime’s activities of suppression. The regime has carried out a wave of arrests.

The MEK’s efficient and effective organizational structure has allowed it to build a resilient network of activists across the country, committed to realizing the Iranian public’s dream of a democratic Iran. However, it needs the support of the international community.

It needs international governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and human rights groups to pressure the regime to release MEK members in regime custody for peacefully protesting. The MEK has also called on international governments to add the MOIS to its international terror blacklists over its involvement in plots to assassinate and maim MEK members.

“Let’s send another strong message to Tehran that its terrorism is no longer tolerated,” Safavi concluded.

Staff writer

 

 

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Ali Safavi's interview with FoxNews

Ali Safavi Tell Fox News: The Regime’s “Number One Target is its Organised Democratic Opposition”

Ali Safavi's interview with FoxNews

Ali Safavi, from NCRI’s office in Washington D.C. tells FoxNews on the recent blacklisting of the IRGC: “the next step would be to designate the Iranian military intelligence and security, the MOIS, for hatching terrorist plots”.

Ali Safavi of the National Council of Resistance of Iran’s (NCRI’s) Foreign Affairs Committee took part in an interview with Fox New’s Eric Shawn on Sunday, April 14. Shawn quizzed Safavi on the State Department’s decision to place Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) on its terror blacklist.

The move came after the Iranian regime was found to be behind foiled terror attacks in France, Albania, and the US in 2018. One such attack was due to take place at the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran’s (MEK’s) annual Grand Gathering event in Paris.

An Iranian diplomat provided a Belgian-Iranian couple with 500g of homemade explosives and instructed them to drive to Paris and detonate the car bomb at the event. They were stopped en-route Paris by Belgian authorities, averting disaster for the more than 100,000 attendees gathered in Paris.

“It’s only one other example of how the Iranian regime… are terrified of the organized opposition,” Safavi said. “If anything it indicates the need that now the IRGC is designated [as a foreign terrorist organization] I think the next step would be to designate the Iranian military intelligence and security, the MOIS, for hatching terrorist plots and carrying out assassinations against dissidents in Europe, in the Middle East and… here in the United States.”

In the Interest of National Security

When asked if he believed the IRGC would carry out a terror attack or assassination on US soil, Safavi responded, “I absolutely have no doubt.” He added, “you have to remember that this regime is on its last legs, it is facing an increasingly enraged population.” “Its number one target is its organized democratic opposition.”

He described how the Iranian regime has proven on several occasions that it has no scruples regarding the murder of Iranian opposition members on foreign soil. “They have done it in the 1990s, assassinating the NCRI’s representative in Switzerland… and its representative in Rome in 1993,” he said.

Stopping the Regime’s Export of Terror

Eric Shawn described how the NCRI’s President-elect Maryam Rajavi has called on the US and other western governments to expel Iranian diplomats and close embassies to deny the regime a footing from which they can coordinate terror attacks. He went on to ask Safavi if he agreed with this approach.

“I think that’s an absolute necessity,” he replied. “As Mrs. Rajavi has said numerous times, the ultimate solution to all of this mayhem, instability, terrorism, and chaos… is for the Iranian people and the organized opposition to overthrow it [the regime].” “I think it is time now for the international community, for the United States to recognize the right of the Iranian people to bring down this regime and of course, recognize the NCRI as the democratic alternative to the mullahs of Iran.”

Staff writer

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