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FATF,Iran Terrorism,IRGC BlackListing,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI,PMOI

IRGC blacklisting

U.S. Should Designate MOIS as a Terrorist Organization

IRGC blacklisting

IRGC blacklisted for its terrorist activities.

On April 8th, the United States announced that it had added the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) to its list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs). The designation carries significant economic and political consequences for the IRGC, as well as the Iranian regime, and has already jeopardized Iranian regime’s chances at gaining membership in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The FTO designation applies to the IRGC and all of its associated entities, including the Quds Force, the Basij Organization, and the Aerospace, Navy, and Ground Forces. Anyone found providing these entities or their officials with financial support, equipment, training, or professional advice will face civil and/or criminal prosecution by U.S. federal authorities.

Consequences of FTO Designation

The Iranian Resistance has called for the international community to blacklist the IRGC for many years because of its suppressive actions toward its own people and its terrorist activities in the region. The FTO designation is a welcome step toward curtailing the regime’s ability to finance and provoke regional hostilities.

Because of the FTO designation, the Iranian regime will no longer be able to deliver promised money, weapons, training, or fighters to IRGC-affiliated militia groups participating in wars and regional conflicts. According to the Pentagon, the Iranian regime was responsible for the deaths of at least 608 U.S. service members in Iraq between 2003 and 2011. Currently, the regime spends billions each year supporting Bashar al-Assad’s dictatorship in Syria. IRGC groups will also lack funding to train terrorist groups to carry out attacks, as they have done numerous times over the past four decades.

The IRGC’s reach extends far beyond the military. The Revolutionary Guards control more than half of Iran’s economy, which means that anyone who chooses to work with an Iranian business or entity faces the possibility that they might be aiding a terrorist group and could suffer serious consequences as a result.

The MOIS and its Terrorist Activities

Designating the IRGC as an FTO is an excellent step in ending the Iranian regime’s reign of terror, but the U.S. needs to go further. Last year, the regime’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) was responsible for coordinating terrorist plots against MEK members in Albania, France, Denmark, and the United States. The foiled bombing of the annual gathering of the MEK outside of Paris in June 2018 led to the arrest and prosecution of a regime diplomat, who masterminded the attack on behalf of the MOIS. Several MOIS agents were expelled from Europe as a result of the planned attack, and Europe sanctioned the MOIS for their role in terrorist activities.

Last summer, Facebook and Twitter removed hundreds of fake accounts belonging to agents of the Iranian regime. The accounts were created to disseminate false information, much of which was intended to vilify the MEK. The MOIS was responsible for this large scale operation to deceive the American people.

Next Steps

The Iranian people are very close to overthrowing the theocratic regime and restoring democracy to their country. Since the widespread uprisings of December 2017, the MEK has taken the lead in organizing anti-regime protests across the country, and the Resistance Movement has spread. Protests, strikes, and demonstrations occur on a daily basis, despite the suppressive actions of the regime and its forces. The country is nearing a revolt.

As the MEK and the Iranian Resistance grow in strength and number, so does the regime’s fear. The MOIS has stepped up its terrorist activities against the MEK over the past year, and it is likely to continue to escalate its attacks on foreign soil.

It is time to end the terrorist Iranian regime. Resuming sanctions and designating the IRGC as a terrorist organization is a productive means to curb the regime’s financial access to power. Adding the MOIS to the FTO list would be a sensible next step that would make the world safer for everyone. Recognizing the right of the Iranian Resistance to overthrow their oppressors would then clear the way for the people to finally choose their own destiny. The final steps lie in the hands of the Iranian people.

 

Staff writer

 

 

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FATF,Iran Economy,Iran Terrorism,IRGC BlackListing,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI

FATF

Regime Factions Fight over Fate of FATF after Terrorist Designation

FATF

The IRGC blacklisting will carry major consequences for the Iranian dictatorship. FATF had previously blacklisted Iranian regime for funding terrorism, and their temporary waiver is believed not to be extended as a result of the recent IRGC terrorist designation.

On April 8th, the United States officially designated the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) after months of deliberations. The measure carries significant consequences for the Iranian regime, which is already facing severe economic pressure due to U.S. sanctions.

 

One of the most pressing issues for the Iranian regime in light of the FTO designation is the diminishing possibility of the country’s acceptance into the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The FATF is an international coalition that works to prevent money laundering and funding of terrorism. The FTO designation puts the possibility of FATF approval in severe jeopardy. It would be difficult to argue that the regime should be part of an anti-terrorism task force after its military has been labeled as a terrorist organization.

Factional Infighting

The regime’s various factions have been fighting for months about whether or not to comply with the terms necessary to become members in good standing with the FATF. Hard-liners say that the FATF rules will prevent the regime from acting as it pleases, while “moderates” argue that FATF membership is essential to preventing further isolation from the international community. Bills to confirm membership in the FATF have stalled in the regime’s Majlis (parliament) for months.

Ahmad Tavakoli, a member of the Expediency Discernment Council, said that Iran is unlikely to gain approval for the FATF after the IRGC’s designation as a terrorist organization. He urged the regime to stop seeking FATF approval, claiming that it would be seen as a concession to the United States. He further recommended that the regime’s Majlis abandon the bill in its entirety, lest in emboldening the U.S.

 

Reza Ansari, who is close to Rouhani’s “moderate” faction, took the opposite side of the argument. He said that the FTO designation was “a trap” meant to “bait” Iran into making “harsh and angry decisions” like leaving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or Iran nuclear deal, in order to justify further actions against the regime. He argued that abandoning the FATF bills or making other rash decisions would be the worst thing the regime could do right now. “Currently, the best gift for the hardliners is unnecessary self-harm such as boycotting the FATF bills, losing one’s ‘strategic patience’, and embarking on ill-advised action that the thinkers and propaganda machine of the warmongering party can capitalize on,” he said.

 

Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, Chair of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Relations Committee, argued a middle ground approach to the situation. He cautioned against making a decision about the FATF based on politics and said that the bill should be reviewed before an informed decision is made. He warned that a political decision would harm the country.

A Weak Position

The regime has responded to the IRGC designation with claims that it is united against the U.S. and that the terrorist label will have little effect. This is a common talking point from the mullahs when challenged, and it falls apart upon even the slightest scrutiny. The FTO designation carries significant consequences for the regime in both the short and long term, and despite the regime’s claims of unity, this most recent crisis has exposed more of the infighting between factions in the government.

Regime Reacts to Implications of IRGC Terrorist Listing with Growing Alarm and Confusion

The End of the Era of Appeasement

The MEK and the Iranian Resistance have called for the IRGC to be blacklisted by the international community for its terrorist activities for many years, and the recent action by the United States is a welcome step toward recognizing the regime’s role in domestic and international terrorism.

The FTO designation was an unprecedented action against a foreign government’s military and came as a shock to many who were not familiar with the IRGC. The Revolutionary Guards have met the criteria for a Foreign Terrorist Organization for many years though, and their inclusion on the terror list is a decisive step toward the end of the era of appeasement to the mullahs.

Staff writer

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FATF meets to discuss Iran's breach of money laundering and support for terrorism

Iran Delays the FATF Vote

FATF meets to discuss Iran's breach of money laundering and support for terrorism

A scene of the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF) meeting

On Sunday, June 10, the regime’s parliament voted to postpone the vote to add the Iranian regime to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for two months. The regime is waiting for the results of ongoing negotiations with Europe before making a decision.

The goal of the FATF is to disrupt money laundering and funding for terrorist groups. Regulations made by the convention will lead to substantial restrictions to the Iranian regime’s banking systems.

The state daily publication Vatane Emruz reported on the regime’s negotiations to join the FATF. The regime’s deputy economy minister was reported by Vatane Emruz as saying, “We cannot neglect the FATF and say we will not join the convention. The FATF is an internationally recognized framework and if we intend to work with the world’s bank we are forced to adapt ourselves to its conditions.”

The mouthpiece of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei,

Kayhan daily said the following: “Joining the FATF will provide new legal tools at our enemies’ disposal, establish a world consensus against the state and realize increasing sanctions against the country’s state institutions, such as the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC)… Will this not lead to a blow to the heroic [Lebanese] Hezbollah and the state’s strategic depth?

“The U.S. is seeking to overthrow us; Europe pursues its own economic interest and stopping our missile and regional power; and the FATF will provide tools to these powers that are looking to gain influence over our economic/political security and regional influence.”

 

A faction in the regime’s parliament that is close to Khamenei issued their own statement which said:

“Bearing in mind the fact that the world’s major powers consider the Lebanese Hezbollah, Hamas in Palestine, Yemen’s Ansarollah [Houthis], Iraq’s Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) and other similar groups as terrorist entities, and instead at least covertly support the [PMOI/MEK], joining the FATF will render endless international measures and increasing sanctions against a variety of our state entities, including the IRGC. Our state institutions and officials will be divided into two classifications of sanctioned and non-sanctioned entities. As a result, there will also be entities sanctioned inside the country. At the end of the day, Iran’s dossier will be referred to The Hague and United Nations Security Council.”

The regime’s precarious position in regards to the FATF was further illustrated by the Mostafa Kavakabian, a regime MP who was quoted as saying:

“If we choose not to join this convention, we will not be able to monitor the hypocrites, or the so-called People’s Mojahedin Organization [MEK], in any country. However, by joining [the FATF] we can pursue the measures taken across the globe against the Islamic Republic, our country, our national interests,” said regime lawmaker Mostafa Kavakebian, one of most senior MPs in regime’s parliament.

By joining the FATF, the regime will face mounting financial pressure to address its sponsorship of terrorism, including sanctions on a number of its institutions, such as the Revolutionary Guards. But the regime is so threatened by the MEK that it may join the organization anyway, in the hope that it might use its membership to monitor the MEK, which has become even more of a concern to Tehran in the wake of the massive uprising began last December and continues today.

 

Although the regime claims that the MEK has no following within Iran and is on the verge of failure, it is willing to consider joining the FATF against its own interests in order to monitor the organization. It would appear that the regime believes that the MEK has more power than they are willing to acknowledge.

Staff Writer

 

 

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