Posts Tagged ‘Iran Floods’

Iran Flood,Iran Floods,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),PMOI

Iran floods in a number of provinces in Iran makes heavy damages

Floodwaters Ravage Iranian Provinces: The Mullahs Stand Idle

Iran floods in a number of provinces in Iran makes heavy damages

Iran Floods makes huge losses in Iran again due to the regime’s mismanagement and inaction-June 2019

2019 is shaping up to be a difficult year for Iranians. Not only is the mullahs’ mismanagement of the Iranian economy sending the country into crisis, but the country has also been rocked by a string of violent and atypical storms.

Between May 8 and May 31, yet more storms hit the country with Khorasan Razavi, East and West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Isfahan, Kurdistan, Fars, Khuzestan, Lorestan and Markazi among the provinces affected. Once again, the Iranian regime has been absent in the rescue and recovery efforts, despite several Iranians losing their lives in the flooding.

Tragedy Strikes

The head of the Iranian Emergency Department claimed that 31 people were killed and 71 Iranians were injured in the most recent spate of flooding. However, the true death toll is likely much higher.

In March, when floods struck Khuzestan and other low-lying provinces, the Iranian regime deliberately sought to cover up the real death toll. Despite the floods claiming more than 200 Iranian lives, the regime remained adamant that the death toll was much lower.

Now, as then, the regime refused to make resources available to the affected victims. The Revolutionary  Guards (IRGC) has boats, temporary shelters, helicopters and medical supplies as well as food and water. However, the regime has not made this equipment available to the Iranian people to alleviate the suffering and provide survivors with assistance.

Condolences and Messages of Support

President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the main Iranian opposition, was among the first to offer condolences and offer her messages of solidarity with the victims. Mrs. Rajavi expressed her hope for a swift recovery for the victims. She also called on the country’s youth to be forthcoming in their efforts to assist.

She called on young Iranians to form popular councils to distribute assistance to the victims in any way they can.

Mrs. Rajavi also pointed the finger at the clerical regime for its inaction and failure to adequately prepare for the heavy rains. Their inaction left the country defenseless against natural disasters. Their plundering of the country’s resources has stripped away Iranians’ ability to rebuild.

Additionally, the mullahs’ indiscriminate construction and poor town planning have ravaged the country’s natural defenses and left it vulnerable to flooding. There is no doubt that the mullahs’ lack of foresight and indiscriminate policymaking exacerbated the damage caused by the flooding and led to the needless loss of human life.

She concluded that under the clerical regime, Iranians find themselves needlessly suffering from natural disasters that are both predictable and preventable. Manageable accidents become national disasters due to the regime’s mismanagement.

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Iran Flood,Iran Floods,Iran human rights,Iran Protests,MEK,PMOI,UK travel advisory for Iranian Dual citizens

UK travel advisory to dual British-Iranians not to travel to Iran

UK Foreign Office Issues Advisory Warning British-Iranian Citizens Not to Travel to Iran

 

UK travel advisory to dual British-Iranians not to travel to Iran

UK Foreign Office issued a warning to British-Iranian dual nationals advising them not to travel to Iran-Friday, May 17, 2019

On Friday, the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office (FCO) issued a warning to British-Iranian dual nationals advising them not to travel to Iran.

The Foreign Office said that the change in travel advice was due to the regime’s “continued arbitrary detention and mistreatment of dual nationals.”

British nationals, particularly those with dual citizenship, face an “unacceptably higher risk” of arbitrary detention and mistreatment at the hands of the Iranian regime than citizens of other countries, added the FCO.

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt explained the reasoning for the change in travel advice, noting the Iranian regime’s refusal to take steps to remedy the problem. He said: “Dual nationals face an intolerable risk of mistreatment if they visit Iran. Despite the UK providing repeated opportunities to resolve this issue, the Iranian regime’s conduct has worsened.

“Having exhausted all other options, I must now advise all British-Iranian dual nationals against traveling to Iran.

“The dangers they face include arbitrary detention and lack of access to basic legal rights, as we have seen in the case of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who has been separated from her family since 2016.

“Regrettably, I must also offer a message of caution to Iranian nationals resident in the UK – but who return to visit family and friends – especially where the Iranian government may perceive them to have personal links to UK institutions or the British government.”

Sky News reported that the change in travel advice was partially due to concerns that the Iranian regime would take punitive action against British-Iranian dual citizens with links to UK institutions.

The Iranian regime does not recognize dual citizenship.

Unrest in Iran

The travel warning follows a series of brutal crackdowns by the clerical regime intended to quell the rising tide of dissent in the country and stave off widespread rebellion. The designation of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization and the tightening of U.S. oil sanctions have deepened both domestic and international economic and political tensions for the regime at a time when the mullahs’ grasp on power was already tenuous.

Last month’s devastating floods took hundreds of lives and caused billions of dollars in damages. It also exposed decades of incompetence and corruption by the regime. Poorly built bridges and dams collapsed, drainage systems that had been paved over caused massive flooding, and years of deforestation intensified the destruction.

The regime’s heartless response during and after the floods caused widespread outrage. While flood victims waited on rooftops for help that did not come, state-run television minimized the number of casualties and damage due to the disaster. Volunteers who provided food and other assistance to their friends and neighbors were arrested. Regime officials who visited flood-stricken areas were greeted by angry protesters who demanded to know when they would receive tents. The regime responded by sending tanks to suppress the protests.

Regime Crackdown

It is in this environment that the mullahs have attempted to crack down on further dissent. The regime recently announced the launch of the Razavion Patrol, a new suppressive force that will police neighborhoods to prevent MEK Resistance Units and other political dissidents from gathering. It is also working to pass an amendment that will make it legal to deny some detainees legal representation while they are being investigated.

The regime is acting out of fear, and it is while it is in this state of fear that it is most dangerous. A bear is at its most deadly when it is gravely wounded. The international community would do well to recognize the threat posed by the regime.

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Ahvaz under flood

Unemployment Crisis Worsens in Aftermath of Flood

Ahvaz under flood

Khuzestan has been under flooding, since last week, while reports indicate that no aid has been provided by the regime and they have been sending security forces to suppress any voice of protest.

Six weeks after catastrophic floods swept through 25 out of 31 of Iran’s provinces, disaster victims across the country are still waiting for much-needed assistance from the regime.

Villages Still Submerged

 

On Tuesday, the administrator for the district government office in Hamidiyeh, Khuzestan Province announced that three villages near the city of Hamidiyeh are still covered by floodwaters and another three villages are in danger of flooding.

 

“Some residents of the flood-hit areas are still living in tents, more than a month since the start of the floods in this area,” he added.

Economic Damage

 

The economic fallout from the floods has wreaked havoc on the Iranian economy, which was already in crisis. Businesses, mines, factories, and industries are struggling to recover from the massive damage caused by the disaster.

Regime experts estimate that almost ten thousand factories were damaged in the floods, leading to the loss of 30,000 jobs.

 

Regime Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli recently estimated the cost of these damages at between 30 and 35 billion Toman.

Farmers have suffered grave financial losses due to the floods, and many are unlikely to see any relief.

 

Regime Minister of Farming Mahmoud Hojjati estimated flood damages to be approximately 13 thousand billion Toman.

 

According to the ILNA news agency, “The floods have caused more damage to the farmers of Golestan, Lorestan, and Khuzestan, than anywhere else in the country.”

No Unemployment Benefits

 

However, the regime’s Ministry of Cooperatives, Labour, and Social Welfare stated that insurance benefits will only be paid to those who previously paid for unemployment rights. Those on short-term contracts were promised limited assistance, but MEK sources inside Iran report that these people have yet to be contacted.

 

Approximately 1,300 pumping stations in Lorestan Province, along with gardens and lands, have been damaged, according to Mohammad Biranvand, the representative of Khorram Abad.

Residents in these areas are unlikely to receive assistance, though, because of the regime’s restrictions on who can claim government benefits. Social support expert Farshid Yazdani told the ILNA news agency that “many of the villages are uninsured, so their residents will struggle with claiming their unemployment rights now.”

 

Unemployment was a serious issue before the floods, and now the crisis has reached a breaking point. The regime has yet to propose a workable plan to repair the damage done by the floods or to address the needs of its citizens in the aftermath of the disaster. Meanwhile, it has become evident that government incompetence and corruption was responsible for a large portion of the destruction caused by the floods, and no solutions have been proposed to prevent a future catastrophe.

Incompetence in Bridge Building

 

An environmental expert from Tehran studied the failure of bridges during the floods and concluded that the regime was responsible for designing and engineering faulty infrastructure that failed during the floods.

 

“Over 400 bridges have been destroyed during the recent floods in Iran,” he said. “These bridges are less than 50 years old, whereas the Sasani Bridge built around two thousand years ago, still stands. This proves our incompetent government management and poor engineering designs of our infrastructures.”

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MEK supporters rallies

Iranian Diaspora Holds Demonstrations around the World in Solidarity with Flood Victims

MEK supporters rallies

MEK supporters rally around the world in solidarity with the Flood victims

Supporters of the MEK, Iran’s principal opposition, in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Australia held rallies and demonstrations in support of the people of Iran who have been devastated by the catastrophic floods that swept through the country over the past month. The demonstrations took place in response to a call from Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), who asked the Iranian community outside of the country to show their solidarity for the hundreds of thousands of flood victims in Iran who have been abandoned by the regime and to condemn the mullahs for the destructive policies that worsened the severity of the disaster and their failure to provide assistance during and after the flood.

Demonstration in Amsterdam

At the rally in Amsterdam, demonstrators chanted:

“No to the mullahs’ regime!”

“The plundering mullahs are behind all this destruction!”

“[Regime Supreme Leader] Khamenei and [regime President] Rouhani are behind this destruction!”

“The mullahs’ regime must be overthrown!”

“This regime is a disgrace!”

Demonstration in Belgium

Demonstrators at the rally in Belgium chanted:
“Khamenei and Rouhani are behind this destruction!”

“The message of every freedom-loving Iranian is that we are ready to overthrow this regime!”

“Dear Iranians in Iran, know the PMOI/MEK are sharing your pain and suffering!”

Demonstration in Sydney

Demonstrators at the rally in Sydney, Australia chanted:

“The mullahs’ regime should know its days are numbered!”

Background

The demonstrations are the latest manifestation of a growing sense of outrage at the Iranian regime’s response to the historic floods that have devastated the country. Hundreds of people are thought to have died in the floods, thousands lost their homes, and damages are estimated at $2.2 billion. The regime has yet to provide a plan for how to fund the recovery effort, and Khamenei refused requests to withdraw money from the country’s development fund to help pay for the massive project.

During the floods, some people were left stranded on rooftops without food or water for more than a day. Some villages were completely surrounded by water and were left without resources for several days. As flooding continued, people were forced to make their own flood barriers out of bags filled with sand and rice. Regime officials ignored weather warnings and did not order evacuations until the final days of the flood, and then they did not tell residents in affected areas where or how to evacuate.

The regime downplayed the severity of the flood, broadcasting false information about casualties and damage. Those who published or shared accurate information about the flood or the regime’s mishandling of the emergency response were arrested.

In the aftermath of the flood, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has been dispatched to handle flood relief. They have been met with angry protesters in the hardest-hit provinces. The regime has responded to this anger by sending in tanks and military forces to suppress the protests instead of providing assistance. This has only increased anger among residents. The same people who waited for days or weeks for food or tents are seeing the regime’s forces respond within hours at the first sign of dissent.

Those who have attempted to heed Mrs. Rajavi’s call to “rush to the aid” of those affected by the flood have faced arrest by security forces as well. A number of aid workers have been arrested for assisting flood victims outside of official channels.

Meanwhile, the Iranian people are still in dire need of assistance in recovering from the floods.

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MEK-Iran:The Public Express Their Disgust at the Regime’s Use of Foreign Mercenaries to Quash Dissent

The photo distributed widely on the social media shows Qassem Soleimani during a meeting with several of the heads of Iraqi Militias including Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, head of the terrorist organization, Hashd al-sha’abi.

Fearing a public outcry after national flooding, the Iranian regime moved Iraqi, Afghani and Pakistani mercenaries into flood-stricken areas to crush dissent.

The Hashd al-Sha’bi forces, closely linked to the Quds forces in Iran and the regime’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), were transferred to Ahvaz and Khuzestan province under the guise of providing aid to victims. However, their armored vehicles and military equipment have exposed the real reason they are lurking in Iranian towns and cities.

Public Disgust

Following the deployment, the local Iranian youth has come together to demand the immediate eviction of all militia from the affected areas.

The provincial governor of Khuzestan, Ghloamreza Shariati, attempted to placate the Iranian youth. He claimed that “Iraqi officials with their heavy machinery” had come to help in the flooding but had since left the country.

“No military force has entered Iran. Only some Iraqi officials with their machinery and gears came to Iran, and are now gone,” he wrote on a state-run media outlet’s website.

In an effort to explain why the mercenaries were present in the country instead of simply providing resources and machinery to the flood-affected regions, the governor wrote, “Their machinery is expensive and they wouldn’t let us operate them.”

Few Iranians were convinced. When Abu Mehdi Al-Mohandes, the head of the Hashd al-Sha’bi forces arrived in Iran and toured Khuzestan province with Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Quds Forces, he was met with public outcry.

A Public at Their Breaking Point

On his travels around Khuzestan, Ghloamreza Shariati has also met fierce opposition from local residents. Crowds have chanted “we do not want you here, get lost!”

On one visit to a flood-stricken area, Shariati was confronted by a resident who could be heard asking the governor if he cared “only for Syria and not for us people here.” The governor responded with an angry outburst. He berated the resident, cursing at him and calling him an ignorant man. Shariati berated him and ordered him to leave the venue.

Abandoned by the Regime

The public’s anger is borne out of a profound sense of abandonment. In the wake of the flooding, the regime has been markedly absent in rescue and assistance efforts.

Flood victims have been left with limited access to food and water and cut off from the world. Rather than making the resources of the IRGC available, including helicopters, boats and emergency shelters, the regime has provided no assistance. Where it has been active, it has only engaged in suppression and the quashing of public dissent.

The President-elect of the Iranian opposition, Maryam Rajavi has urged the Iranian people to rally together in this testing time and offer support to flood victims wherever they can. While this is no substitute for a coordinated government effort, in the face of the regime’s inaction it is the best Iranians can hope for.

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Ali Khamenei,Iran Floods,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI

Khamenei Refuses to Withdraw from Development Fund to Finance Flood Relief Effort

A month after the flash-flood hit large areas of Iran, the regime did not do anything and still is leaving people on their own to deal with the destructive flood.

Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei rejected the possibility of using the country’s development fund to finance flood recovery. He said that funds may be withdrawn only after all other sources have been exhausted. Khamenei has earmarked the development fund for financing the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and military conflict in the region.

The deadly sixteen-day floods are estimated to have caused over $2.2 billion in damages in 25 out of 31 Iranian provinces. Hundreds are believed to have died, thousands lost their homes, and hundreds of thousands of people were affected by the destruction caused by the floods.

MEK-Iran: Floodwaters Spread through Khuzestan while Tens of Thousands of Iranians Still Wait for Disaster Aid

Regime President Hassan Rouhani inquired about using the development fund in a letter to Khamenei because of the regime’s growing alarm at the price of the disaster. The Supreme Leader replied, “You are aware that withdrawing from the development fund is only permitted when all other channels of raising fund are exhausted.”

The “other channels” referred to are components of the nation’s budget, including construction, bank reserves, and insurance. Those resources are intended to be used on services that are already sorely lacking. Iran is in the midst of an economic crisis, and robbing the budget would exacerbate a situation that was already unsustainable before the floods. It’s also uncertain that the budget could withstand a $2.2 billion hit, even if the regime was willing to bring the country to the brink of economic destruction.

Majlis Members Express Concern

The economic damage caused by the floods has caused some members of the regime’s Majlis (parliament) to express concern about the government’s ability to cover the costs of recovery without drawing from the development fund. On Sunday, one member of the Majlis Development Committee was quoted as saying, “The volume of the destruction from the floods is enormous and the government alone is incapable of covering it. So, it is necessary to withdraw from the development funds with the supreme leader’s signature.”

Khamenei Deflects Blame

Khamenei still refuses to consider drawing from the development fund until the country is completely bankrupt, ignoring his own government and the growing anger from the Iranian people, who have taken to the streets in flood-stricken areas to protest the regime’s failure to provide assistance to those whose lives and homes have been destroyed in the disaster.

In a recent meeting with some of his allies, Khamenei feigned sympathy for the flood victims, but he also took the opportunity to warn those in his faction about the threat that the aftermath of the deadly disaster poses to the regime. He made sure reference “enemies” in order to deflect blame from his government’s own actions, a common strategy employed by the regime in times of crisis.

In an April 15th report broadcast on the state-run IRIB news agency, Khamenei said, “We should be aware and walk carefully, like someone who is crossing a narrow road with deep cliffs around it. You must look at each step you take. You must know that the ‘enemies’ [the MEK and the U.S.] are increasingly plotting against us.”

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Protests in flood hit aread

Regime’s Suppression of Flood Protests Points to Fear of Widespread Rebellion

Protests in flood hit aread

Protests grows in flood-hit areas due to lack of aid and using mercenaries to disperse the people’s anger.

Protests have broken out in flood-stricken areas across Iran in response to the regime’s failure to provide assistance to its people during and after the deadly floods that affected 25 out of 31 of the nation’s provinces. The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and the MEK have reported on protests in Ahvaz and Poldokhtar.

No Help from the Regime

The catastrophic floods washed through Iran over a sixteen-day period ending earlier this month, leaving a path of death and destruction in their wake. After the first wave of floods, people were left stranded on rooftops waiting for help that never came. As the second wave of floods approached, the regime refused to issue evacuations or create flood barriers. Before the third round of floods, regime officials called for evacuations, but people in affected areas were not told where or how to evacuate. Many residents of areas hit in the final wave of flooding were forced to flee to neighboring hilltops. Regime officials later blamed them for not evacuating to non-existing “safe areas.”

The people of Iran did their best to survive the floods and their aftermath without the assistance of the government. Residents of hard-hit areas created flood barriers by filling bags with sand and rice and sleeping on top of them. Iranian Arab women baked bread for people in need of food, and Iranian children trekked for hours through the mountains to deliver food and supplies to residents in villages where roads were completely blocked by floodwaters.

 

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, reiterated that the regime must make the facilities and equipment of the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) available to the Iranian people to assist them in their time of need.

 

The regime has ignored these requests and has done little to address the needs of the people in recovering from the floods. Officials who made appearances for photo ops in heavily damaged areas after the floods were met by angry protesters who demanded that they provide assistance or go home. Public outrage grew against the IRGC for its abandonment of flood victims.

The regime responded to these calls for help by sending security forces to prevent protests and demonstrations. People who lost their homes and are still waiting for tents to sleep in have been greeted with armed military forces instead of housing or food. Meanwhile, the regime has refused to allow citizens to provide assistance to each other and has arrested a number of aid workers for helping those in need.

Protests in Flood-Stricken Areas

The Iranian regime’s attempts to suppress protests in order to protect itself from rebellion have backfired. Anger over the regime’s callous disregard for the welfare of its own people has led to a swell of protests. Outside of Ahvaz, Khuzestan Province, residents were heard protesting the presence of IRGC commander Mohammad Reza Naghdi. They chanted, “Get out! Ahvaz will remain free!”

Last week, a protest took place in western Ahvaz. Residents in the flood-ravaged area criticized the regime for its failure to construct flood barriers and evacuate marshes before the floods.

The regime has expressed concern that the current protests will lead to a widespread rebellion. The mullahs have been unable to suppress anti-regime protests since the nationwide uprisings in late 2017, and the MEK has grown in influence inside Iran since then. Under the MEK’s leadership, the Iranian Resistance has become larger and more organized, and the threat of regime change has become very real to the mullahs. Decades of oppression and snowballing economic crises have led to growing dissatisfaction with the ruling regime. The government’s colossal failure to provide basic aid to its citizens or show a modicum of compassion after the recent catastrophic floods could easily be the final straw for the Iranian people.

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Ahvaz under flood

Regime Arrests 28 People for Reporting News about Floods

Ahvaz under flood

Khuzestan has been under flooding, since last week, while reports indicate that no aid has been provided by the regime and they have been sending security forces to suppress any voice of protest.

According to regime officials, a total of 28 people have been arrested for reporting news about the recent deadly floods that have devastated Iran.

Arrests in Khuzestan Province

 

24 Internet activists were arrested in Khuzestan Province for their role in publishing news of the floods in the province, according to the head of provincial cyber police, Shahin Hassanvand. Khuzestan was one of the provinces hit hardest by the disaster, and regime officials have withheld vital information about casualties and damage to the region. The news that has been provided has been patently false.

 

A report aired on the state-run ISNA news agency claimed that the activists were arrested for disturbing “public opinion by spreading news and rumors on the floods.”

 

Hassanvand described the process through which the police hunted down the publishers. “Due to the publication of rumors and fake news on the internet which has led to insecurity in the community’s psychological climate, experts of the police forces monitored social platforms and identified 24 internet users who published deviating news and rumors about the flood and disturbed public opinion.” He also noted that the publishers have been referred to the regime’s Judiciary for prosecution.

Arrests in Tehran

The previous week, four people were arrested in Tehran for “spreading rumors” about the regime’s incompetence in its response to the flood, according to the Capital city’s Chief of Police.

A Threat to Security

The Iranian regime has done everything in its power to prevent its people from seeing the full extent of the destruction from the floods and witnessing the colossal failure of the regime’s response in its aftermath. This has proved to be impossible. At least 25 out of Iran’s 31 provinces sustained heavy damage due to the floods, and survivors of the disaster shared videos and pictures on social media of the flood. Public confidence in official reports about the flood eroded quickly as anger mounted over the regime’s failure to provide emergency aid.

 

In late March, as floods raged across the country, regime Attorney General Jafar Montazeri announced that publishing “fake” news (information contrary to official regime reports) about the floods was a violation of national security and that those found in violation would be dealt with for “disrupting the security of the country.”

Human rights groups report that another 11 relief workers were arrested in Khuzestan by the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC). Another 22 rescue workers were arrested in Khuzestan by MOIS agents. The regime has banned all non state-sanctioned aid to flood victims.

Growing Protests

 

Residents of flood-stricken areas have greeted regime officials and IRGC forces who have attempted to visit with angry protests. The regime has responded to these protests with suppressive actions.

 

According to reports from MEK sources inside Iran and videos shared on social media, the regime sent security forces to suppress dissent in Khuzestan in response to protests in the Eyn-e Do and Shelang Abad regions in Ahvaz. Other reports indicate that troops from the Fatemiyoun Division, which is comprised of Afghan nationals, were dispatched to Poldokhtar, which was destroyed in the floods.

90 Flood Deaths in One Western Iranian City, According to Internal Police Report

During the floods, Iranians in some areas were stranded on rooftops for days waiting for a rescue that never came. Entire villages were left without food or drinking water. People in Shiraz were left to pull bodies out of the flooded streets. During the final wave of flooding, the regime called for evacuations, but it didn’t tell people where or how to evacuate.

 

Finally, the Iranian government is sending troops to the areas that were destroyed by floods. The regime clearly has the resources to send people and equipment quickly when it feels it is necessary. But even now, with the country in ruins, the mullahs aren’t providing aid. The troops haven’t arrived with boats and supplies. They have come with tanks and guns. And the people are angry.

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Dr. Majid Rafizadeh,Iran Floods,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,PMOI

Flooding in Ahvaz

Leading Iran Expert Accuses the Regime of Downplaying Casualty Figures and Contributing to the Loss of Life in Recent Flooding

Flooding in Ahvaz

The locals in Ahvaz, rushing to block the flash flooding from damaging their farms, as the government seems not to care about them.

Arab News published an op-ed from Dr. Majid Rafizadeh on Sunday, April 14. Rafizadeh is a Harvard-educated political scientist and one of the world’s leading experts on Iran and US foreign policy.

The piece, entitled “after the deluge: Iran’s paramilitary looting takes a deadly toll”, criticized the Iranian regime over its response to recent floods and accused it of putting its own interests ahead those of the Iranian people.

Downplaying Casualty Figures

Rafizadeh highlighted the discrepancy between the information being released by the regime and reports coming from the Iranian opposition. “The official death toll from recent massive flooding in Iran stands at 77, but it is more likely that well over 250 people have been killed by the disaster and as a result of bungled relief efforts,” he writes.

In the wake of the flooding, the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) revealed that the regime was deliberately withholding accurate reports on the scale of the flood’s damage, including the loss of human life.

The Iranian judiciary, under regime control, was reportedly threatening Iranians with prosecution if they spoke publicly on the full extent of the flood damage.

“Iranian security forces, the military, and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) are all on the ground in flood-ravaged areas, but are generally more focused on suppressing dissent and preserving the theocratic regime’s reputation than contributing to relief efforts,” Rafizadeh writes.

The President-elect of the Iranian opposition, Maryam Rajavi shared this sentiment. She released a statement accusing the mullahs of doing “nothing but preserving their shameless rule and plundering the people.” For Mrs Rajavi, “national solidarity and cooperation is the only way to confront the flash floods.”

Mismanaging Natural Resources

Rafizadeh was not only enraged by the regime’s flood response, but he also accused the regime of contributing to the flood’s damage by mismanaging Iranian natural resources, engaging in unsafe construction practices and neglecting ecological assessments.

The regime and its IRGC constructed on land alongside waterways, failed to maintain dams and failed to dredge rivers and lakes to allow for an uninterrupted flow of water. These practices, Rafizadeh argues, exacerbated the flooding and led to unnecessary damage and death.

Environmentalists who have tried to raise concerns in recent years have been subject to arrest and tortured. One Iranian-Canadian professor named Kavous Seyed-Emami died in regime custody under suspicious circumstances. Another four environmental activists remain in prison on charges of “spreading corruption on earth.” The charge carries a maximum penalty of death.

Exploiting the Flooding to Tighten Suppressive Measures

“Reports indicate hard-liners are presently jostling to exploit the flood damage and further tighten their grip on Iranian commerce and society,” Rafizadeh writes. There have already been reports of the regime moving Afghani, Iraqi and Pakistani mercenaries into flood-stricken areas to quash dissent.

Rafizadeh concluded, “the pain being experienced by the Iranian people is likely to get much worse unless the international community sanctions the IRGC and isolates its activities to such an extent that it becomes impossible to put more Iranian wealth into its hands.”

 

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Maryam Rajavi's statement on the recent flood in Ahvaz and the people's protest

Maryam Rajavi Issues Another Statement Calling for the Military Resources to be Made Available to Flood Victims

Maryam Rajavi's statement on the recent flood in Ahvaz and the people's protest

Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the Iranian opposition says, the facilities of the military and regime security forces should be made available to the people to help the flood-stricken people.

The regime’s inaction in the face of widespread flooding across Iranian cities prompted yet more protests from the Iranian population. On Friday, April 12, protestors took to the streets in Ahvaz, one of the cities worst affected by the flooding, to air their frustrations with this corrupt and brutal regime.

The protestors chanted slogans aimed at the social and cultural deputy of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), Mohammad Reza Naghdi, who was visiting the area. They chanted: “Get lost, Ahvaz will remain free!” and “Khuzestan is submerged in water, the authorities are sleeping”, forcing him to leave.

The Regime’s Mismanagement

The protestors accused the Iranian regime of exacerbating the damage and destruction caused by the flooding. The people of Ahvaz protested the regime’s failure to redirect the flood water onto the marshes and flood plains. They also complained about the lack of facilities and resources to construct flood barriers.

The regime has also been utterly absent in providing assistance in the aftermath of the flooding. Victims have been left stranded without access to food and clean water. Rescue efforts to retrieve the bodies of the 200 victims that lost their lives in the flooding have been coordinated by citizens without assistance or resources from the Iranian regime.

Demonstrations continued into the night in some parts of the city.

A Statement from the Iranian Opposition

The president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Maryam Rajavi, made a statement to the Iranian people on Thursday. She urged Iranians to rally together in the face of the national crisis.

She called on the youth of Ahvaz to cooperate and form popular councils to deal with the floods in Khuzestan and other provinces.

In the statement she also undermined that”The facilities of the army, the IRGC and government agencies, engineering machinery, naval boats, supply depots, shelters, and barracks must be provided to the people to be used to prevent floods, protect people’s lives, save the flood victims, and to temporarily resettle them.”

The regime’s forces have helicopters, boats, shelters, engineering equipment, and warehouses that would be of vital importance to the Iranian people in their hour of peril.

Instead, the regime is more inclined to use these resources and facilities to terrorise and suppress the Iranian people. They are depriving people of their basic needs to survive. When the people turn to protests, the regime threatens, arrests and violently quashes any political dissent.

The regime does not have the interests of the people at heart. They are lining their pockets while Iranians fight for survival and respite from the encroaching waters.

Staff writer

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