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Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras former VP of the European Parliament

Former Head of the European Parliament Calls for an Investigation into 1988 Massacre

Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras former VP of the European Parliament

Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras, former vice president of the European Parliament speaking at a conference at the presence of Maryam Rajavi, the leader of Iran opposition, held at the European Parliament-April 2014

UPI published an opinion piece on Tuesday, December 18th, written by the former Vice President of the European Parliament, Alejo Vidal-Quadras. The article calls for a full investigation into the 1988 massacre carried out against the Iranian opposition by the clerical regime. It also urges the international community to take steps to bring those responsible within the regime to justice.

A recent report from Amnesty International, entitled “Blood Soaked Secrets- Why Iran’s 1988 Prison Massacres are Ongoing Crimes Against Humanity”, provided a damning assessment of the scale of the 1988 massacre and the role the mullahs have played in covering up the massacre since.

Crimes Against Humanity

Between July and September 1988, the Iranian regime arbitrarily executed more than 30,000 political prisoners. The vast majority were from the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), a pro-democracy group that opposes the regime in Iran and across the world.

The orders for the barbaric and brutal murders came from the Supreme Leader Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini. Vidal-Quadras writes, “all throughout the country, political prisoners were taken to ‘death committees’ that would ask them about their political and religious loyalties. Those who manifested continuing loyalty to the PMOI [MEK]… were summarily executed and in most cases buried in anonymous mass graves”.

The fact that many families were not informed of their loved one’s death, and to this day, many victims’ families do not know where their loved one was buried, makes the nature of the crimes ongoing.

“Since 1988 the Iranian regime not only has harassed and attacked the families of the victims searching for justice but has denied that the massacre took place”, Vidal-Quadras writes.

The Amnesty International report highlights the fact that some of the officials involved in the killings still occupy senior positions within the Iranian leadership today. The current Minister for Justice, Alireza Avaei, for example, was involved in the violent and brutal execution campaign.

The report concluded that the Iranian regime had carried out forced disappearances, torture, murder, and extermination to such a degree that they amounted to crimes against humanity.

The International Community Has an Obligation

Following the report, Vidal-Quadras concludes that the responsibility now lies with the international community to ensure the culprits are brought to justice. “As we very well know that the Islamic Republic’s institutions won’t ever guarantee a fair and thorough investigation”, he says, “we ask international bodies such as the United Nations and the International Criminal Court to ensure independent criminal investigations”.

Vidal-Quadras concludes, “We, in Europe, know that bringing justice to the victims of a crime against humanity not only means justice for those affected but a lesson of history for all to remember”, adding, “we bring justice not only to close a case but also to remind us and the next generations that crimes against humanity cannot be under any circumstances left unpunished”.

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Former US Congressman Addresses the MEK in Albania

Maryam Rajavi, greets the panel of speakers at the International Conference on her arrival to the conference hall.

Maryam Rajavi, greets former US Congressman, Patrick Kennedy at the International Conference against the Iranian regime’s terrorist activities and violations of human rights- Ashraf 3, Albania- December 15, 2018

Patrick Kennedy, a former Democratic representative of the U.S. House of Representatives, gave a speech to members of the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) living in exile in Albania.

In the speech, he thanked Albania for being a kind and willing host to the Iranian opposition group and drew parallels between the two countries. “Anwar Khoja stole your country from you. Just as the mullahs have stolen Iran from the Iranian citizens”, he said.

Kennedy went on to address the recent surge in regime aggression against the MEK. He cited recent terrorist plots in Europe that targeted the opposition group, and the mullahs’ online misinformation campaign designed to turn public opinion against them.

“Major social media companies like Twitter, Google, and Facebook have all in recent months, suspended and removed hundreds of fake accounts”, he said. Kennedy’s comments come just a few weeks after Twitter announced the removal and suspension of more than 770 regime-affiliated accounts.

A Reminder of the 80s and 90s

Patrick Kennedy, Former US Congressman Addresses the MEK in Ashraf 3 in Albania, during the International Conference on Iranian regime’s growing terrorism and violations of human rights

“Tehran-backed terrorist attacks in France, Albania, and Denmark were foiled by close cooperation between the police and the security and judicial authorities of several European countries”, he continued, adding that the foiled plots of 2018 were reminiscent of the regime’s violent campaign against dissidents in the 80s and 90s.

Although the attacks have been similar to those of the last century, the responses have not. Kennedy lamented that the West has not shown the same resolve and determination in opposition to the Iranian regime today.

The response to the 2018 attacks has been “very, very weak”, he said, “and inappropriate to the emerging threat” of the Iranian regime.

A Viable Opposition

Kennedy went on to suggest that the rationale behind the regime’s terror and misinformation campaigns was that the MEK represented a threat to its continued existence.

“It shows that the NCRI (the National Council of Resistance of Iran, the umbrella organization of the MEK) is a real force for change”, Kennedy said. He also cited the MEK’s president-elect Maryam Rajavi’s ten-point plan as a “viable roadmap for the people of Iran to establish a fair and free and democratic secular Republic of Iran in this crucial juncture in history”.

There are more signs of change on the horizon. Kennedy described how the majority of Iranians now live below the poverty line and corruption and unemployment are ravaging the Iranian economy.

This economic crisis is prompting more of the Iranian population to take to the street in protest. “People from various social strata are taking part in the nationwide protests”, Kennedy said. “Women, teachers, retirees, ordinary citizens who have lost their savings and pensions.”

The protests themselves have become more anti-regime in nature. Slogans like “down with the dictator, our enemy is right here”, and “death to Khamenei”, have become commonplace in Iran.

MEK, A Growing Opposition

Kennedy predicted that change in Iran is coming. “The mullahs do not know what they are up against”, he said, “right here are wonderful media laboratories that are helping to disseminate the true message of what’s going on in Iran”.

The regime’s routine human rights abuses are also beginning to earn it the attention of the international community. The UN General Assembly has adopted more than 60 resolutions condemning the regime’s actions.

There is an increasing voice calling for an investigation into the regime’s most heinous crime— the execution of 30,000 MEK members in 1988. A recent Amnesty International report called for an investigation into the incident and for those responsible in the Iranian leadership to be held to account.

The UN Must Investigate the 1988 Massacre

Kennedy concluded by saying, “it is amazing what you have built in a year, and it says to me something very hopeful. It says that if you could rebuild Camp Ashraf and Camp Liberty and you could build Ashraf here in Albania, then it won’t be long before you’re going to build Ashraf in Tehran”.

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Maryam Rajavi, speaks to MEK members in Ashraf 3, Albania

Maryam Rajavi: Expulsion of Regime Diplomats from Albania Is “Courageous Act”

Maryam Rajavi, speaks to MEK members in Ashraf 3, Albania

Maryam Rajavi, speaking at the International conference-Ashraf 3, Albania

Albania announced on Wednesday that it had expelled two Iranian regime diplomats from the country. On Thursday, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), released a statement in support of the expulsion.

Mrs. Rajavi said that the “courageous act” was a necessary response to terrorism and the Iranian regime and was “imperative for the security of European countries.”

Foiled Terrorist Attack on MEK Nowruz Gathering

Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama announced in April of this year that Albania had foiled a terrorist plot by the Iranian regime against the MEK. The attack was scheduled to coincide with a Nowruz celebration. In his April 19th statement, Prime Minister Rama said: “We are on the right side of history. We are among European-Atlantic countries who are similarly under threat. I believe all these countries will act against terrorist threats.”

The identity of Expelled Diplomats

The two regime diplomats who were expelled were

Gholamhossein Mohammadnia and Mostafa Roudaki. Mohammadnia was the regime’s ambassador to Albania, and Roudaki was the Ministry of Intelligence and Security’s (MOIS) station chief in Albania. Both are senior MOIS agents who were uncovered by the MEK in 2016 and 2017.

 

Mohammadnia played a key role in the negotiations which led to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. He was the MOIS representative in the regime’s delegation, led by Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.

Support from U.S. President

United States President Donald Trump penned a letter to Prime Minister Rama on Wednesday, thanking the Albanian government for its “steadfast efforts to stand up to Iran and to counter its destabilizing activities and efforts to silence dissidents around the globe.”

This is a significant departure from the policy of appeasement that Western leaders have taken in the past.

Statement from Maryam Rajavi

In her statement, Mrs. Rajavi said that the Iranian regime needed to know that its “terrorist activities in Europe and across the world will have serious consequences.”

She went on to say: “Since three decades ago, the Iranian Resistance has always emphasized that the Iranian regime’s Foreign Ministry and its diplomats and embassies are part and parcel of its machinery of terrorism. Three major terror plots by the mullahs in Albania in March 2018, in France in June 2018, and in Denmark in September 2018 had been planned by these embassies and diplomats.

“The clerical regime has found the only way out of the irremediable internal and external crises and deadlocks in suppressing the people of Iran, warmongering in the region, missile threats, and disseminating fake news, demonization, and terrorism, particularly against the Iranian Resistance, which it views as an existential threat,” Mrs. Rajavi said, adding, “The regime in Tehran is the godfather and the epicenter of terrorism under the banner of Islam in the world today. As such, designating the Ministry of Intelligence as a terrorist entity and expelling the mullahs’ diplomat-terrorists from the U.S. and Europe is necessary for these countries’ security and is demanded by the Iranian people.”

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The protester that raises her arm as a symbol of resistance, while stepping out of teargas

One Year Later: A Summary of Protests in Iran in 2018

The protester that raises her arm as a symbol of resistance, while stepping out of teargas

The photo symbolizes the December 2017 uprisings in Iran that has not stopped and has continued in forms of protests and strikes across the country.

December 28th marks the one year anniversary of the nationwide uprising that mobilized people from all walks of life to take to the streets in protest of Iran’s theocratic regime. The protests began in Mashhad on December 28, 2017, and spread to over 140 cities in every province in Iran over a two week period.

The initial protests were in response to the economic disaster facing the country. Poverty, corruption, inflation, and rising unemployment drove many Iranians into the streets to protests. But as the uprising grew in strength and numbers, the demonstrators began to protest the regime itself.

Protesters chanted, “Death to the dictator!”

“Death to [Supreme Leader] Khamenei!”

“Khamenei shame on you, let go of your rule!”

One year later, Iran is still the scene of daily protests and demonstrations against the authoritarian regime. The protesters have made it clear that they will not be satisfied until the ruling regime is toppled and democracy is restored to Iran.

The MEK has played a leading role in the protests taking place across Iran. As the movement to topple the mullahs’ regime has grown, the people have sought a viable alternative to the corrupt dictatorship that has destroyed Iran’s economy and environment, and that has oppressed its people for the past four decades. The MEK offers a democratic alternative that will restore freedom to Iran.

Iran News Wire summarized protest activity in Iran over the past year. The following is a summary of their report:

January

Recorded Protests: 643

Daily Average: 21

The uprising that began in December 2017 continued into January, and protests took an anti-regime turn in the month of January. Protesters set fire to Basij bases and tore down images of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.

February

Recorded Protests: 596

Daily Average: 21

March

Recorded Protests: 422

Daily Average: 14

April

Recorded Protests: 452

Daily Average: 15

May

Recorded Protests: 1,093

Daily Average: 35

June

Recorded Protests: 475

Daily Protests: 16

 

In June, bazaar merchants in Tehran launched a large-scale strike in protest of the failing economy and rising prices. Protesters in Khoramshahr took to the streets to protest water scarcity.

Protests quickly turned to calls for regime change, with chants of “Death to the Dictator!”, “Death to Rouhani!”, “Death to Khamenei!”, and “Our enemy is right here, they lie when they say it’s the U.S.!”

Women played a key role during the protests in Khorramshahr and in Khuzestan in southwest Iran.

July

Recorded Protests and Strikes: 970 in cities and regions

Daily Average: 31

August

Recorded Protests: 133

Daily Average: 20

September

Recorded Protests: 1,367 in 293 cities, villages and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 46

Iran’s truck drivers began their nationwide organized strike in September.

October

Recorded Protests: 1,533 in 323 cities, villages, and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 49

October saw the most protest activity in Iran in 2018. Truck drivers, teachers, and bazaar merchants all went on strike in October.

November

Recorded Protests: 911 in 171 cities, villages, and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 30

Iranian truck drivers went on another round of strikes in November, as did Iran’s teachers.

The workers of the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory workers in Shush and the Iran National Steel Group workers in Ahvaz also began striking in protest of months of unpaid wages. Their weeks-long strikes would attract international attention.

Head of Iranian Regime’s Judiciary Threatens Striking Workers

December

Recorded Protests: 273 as of December 21st

Daily Average: 9

Workers, credit union clients, retirees, students, and prisoners all protesters during the month of December.

The regime arrested a number of striking Ahvaz steelworkers and Haft Tappeh factory workers in an escalation of their previous attempts to suppress the strikes. Regime agents carried out a series of midnight raids on the houses of striking workers and arrested dozens of workers. Reports indicate that labor activist Esmail Bakhshi was tortured in prison.

Iranian truck drivers started their fifth round of strikes this month as well. Those numbers are not included in the report, which will be updated by Iran News Wire in January.

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Pandeli Majko's speech at Ashraf 3 Conference

Former Albanian Prime Minister and “Friend” of the MEK Addresses Members in Tirana

Pandeli Majko's speech at Ashraf 3 Conference

Pandeli Majko, former PM of Albania and member of the current cabinet, speaks at MEK’s conference-Ashraf 3, Albania

Pandeli Majko, the former Prime Minister of Albania addressed the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) in a gesture of solidarity with the Iranian resistance movement.

The former prime minister introduced himself as “a friend” of the cause. “[The] MEK represents the Iran of the future”, he said to thunderous applause.

Majko added that he was “so proud that together… we are in the hands of Madam Rajavi”, Mrs . Maryam Rajavi is the charismatic and influential president-elect of the Iranian opposition, whose ten-point plan has been championed across the world as the most viable roadmap to bring democracy to Iran. “One of the few women”, Majko continued, “that with her leadership [will] change not only the future of Iran but the future of [the] Middle East”.

Majko addressed the recent misinformation campaigns of the mullahs that have sought to delegitimize the MEK and their allies. “I know that [there] exists a lot of news that MEK [are] terrorists”, he said. “We don’t care”, Majko said, “because we know you because you have come here under the umbrella of the United Nations and UNHCR. [The] UN… and terrorism are two different things”.

Former Scottish MEP Describes His Visit to Ashraf 3 in Albania and the Regime’s Vicious Misinformation Campaign

The former prime minister also took a swipe at the Iranian regime’s own diplomatic operations within Albania. “[The] UN don’t have diplomats [and] use the status of diplomats [to] act like terrorists”, Majko said.

The Iranian regime has long-used diplomatic buildings and diplomats to coordinate terror attacks on foreign soil. In 2018 alone, a plot was foiled in March in Albania where two Iranian agents sought to attack the MEK compound outside the capital, Tirana.

In June, a diplomat from the regime’s embassy in Vienna was arrested over his involvement to detonate a car bomb at the MEK’s Grand Gathering event in Paris.

Pandeli Majko speaking at a conference in Ashraf 3, MEK’s residence in Albania

“This time that is coming, a melody of a piano here in Tirana can sing like a song in all of Iran… like a song of freedom”, Majko proclaimed.

However, he was adamant that in the meantime, Albania would be a welcoming host. “I am sure that… you and your families everywhere understand now that you are not only refugees… you are in your land here. Here you have a land”, he said.

“We Albanians have an old expression”, Majko concluded, “my home is my castle. Albania is your castle”.

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Albanian Prime Minister, Edi Rama

Washington Times Piece Praises Albania’s Expulsion of Diplomats

Albanian Prime Minister, Edi Rama

Edi Rama, Albani’s Prime Minister. He recently expelled Iranian regime’s Ambassador and his deputy for their involvement in terrorist activities against MEK

Todd Wood covered the Albanian expulsion of Iranian diplomats for the Washington Times. His piece appeared on the platform’s site on Thursday, December 20th.

“It’s worth noting and praising Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama’s recent decision to expel two Iranian diplomats, including the ambassador”, he wrote.

The Washington Times piece outlined the threat the Iranian regime poses to nations’ national security in the West. “Tehran has continued to run terrorist operations out of its diplomatic installations around the world”, Wood quips. “It is a criminal, a malignant cancer of a regime bent on exporting its medieval and corrupt dogma throughout the Middle East and the world”.

Many of the regime’s terror operations in Europe have been conducted against the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), a fearless pro-democracy group whose members are living in exile in Albania.

A plot in June sought to detonate a car bomb at the MEK’s annual Grand Gathering event in Paris. The event was attended by political figures and journalists from around the world, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and former New York Mayor and Trump’s legal advisor, Rudy Giuliani.

All Eyes Are on Iran Following A Surge in Terror Activities

The MEK compound in Albania has also been a target. A foiled Iranian mission to attack the compound during the Persian New Year celebrations in March led to the detention of Iranian agents.

A Welcome Response

Albania’s decision has been met with praise from democracy advocates around the world. The leader of the Iranian opposition, president-elect Maryam Rajavi, released a statement in which she praised the resolve of the Albanian prime minister.

She said that the mullahs in Iran must be shown that their “terrorist activities in Europe and across the world will have serious consequences”.

The regime’s campaign of terror against the Iranian opposition in Albania also shows the extent to which the organization threatens the regime’s existence. At the MEK’s Grand Gathering event in Paris, Rudy Giuliani asked, “if the MEK was not a threat to the regime, why are they trying so hard to kill them?”

A Regime in Turmoil

There are other signs that the regime is growing increasingly desperate in its bid to remain in power. The regime has intensified its campaigns of repression within Iran. Regime agents have carried out raids on protestors homes.

Regime’s Strategy to Avoid Responsibility for Terrorist Plot Involves Blaming MEK

Following the nationwide protests at the beginning of 2018, the regime arrested more than 8,000 peaceful protestors and members of the political opposition. These are not the actions of a regime confident about its position in power.

The good news is times are changing. The regime no longer has a president in the White House that is willing to make concessions. Trump has shown that he will not tolerate Iranian aggression.

The Trump administration is urging its European allies to adopt its economic sanctions against the Iranian regime to curb its nuclear ambitions and end its missile development programs.

Todd Woods concludes, “thankfully, we finally have a president willing to stand up to the Iranians and their enablers and make them worry about their own very survival”.

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The embassy of the Iranian regime in Albania

Albania’s Decision to Expel Regime Diplomats is Welcomed by the Trump Administration

The embassy of the Iranian regime in Albania

Iranian regime’s Embassy in Tirana- Albania

The Albanian government expelled two diplomats, including the Iranian ambassador, from the Iranian embassy in Tirana. Following a surge in Iranian state-sponsored terror activities on European soil and recent terror-arrests on the continent, the Albanian foreign ministry confirmed that it was expelling the diplomats for “violating their diplomatic status”.

The move drew praise from the Trump administration. The US president penned a letter to Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama which thanked the Albanian leader for countering Iranian “destabilizing activities and efforts to silence dissidents around the globe”.

According to reporting by The Independent, a source with knowledge of the matter said the expulsions were connected to an aborted March 2018 scheme by two alleged Iranian members of the Revolutionary Guard’s Quds Force, its foreign secret operations branch, caught planning “an explosive” attack against the base or personnel of the Mujahedin-e-Khalq, or MEK.

In the letter, Trump said the move would send a message to Tehran that its “terrorist activities in Europe and around the world will have severe consequences”.

Fox News in an article published at its website wrote: “Albania is a particular target for the regime as it is home to more than 2,000 Iranian dissidents belonging to People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK) after they were relocated from Iraq in 2016.

Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), a coalition of Iranian resistance groups that includes MEK, said in a statement that Iran must be shown “their terrorist activities in Europe and across the world will have serious consequences.”

“The regime in Tehran is the godfather and the epicenter of terrorism under the banner of Islam in the world today.  As such, designating the Ministry of Intelligence as a terrorist entity and expelling the mullahs’ diplomat-terrorists from the U.S. and Europe is necessary for these countries’ security and is demanded by the Iranian people,” Fox News reported.

Other senior figures in the Trump administration also issued statements of solidarity with Albania following the decision. His National Security Adviser John Bolton, a supporter of the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), released a statement on Twitter. It read, “We stand with PM Rama and the Albanian people as they stand up to Iran’s reckless behaviour in Europe and across the globe”.

Albania Expels Iranian Regime Ambassador and His Deputy For Terrorism

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also issued a statement of support. He said, “the world must stand together to sanction Iran’s regime until it changes its destructive behaviour.”

2018 has seen a surge in Iranian terror activities. In June, an Iranian couple was arrested, along with a diplomat working at the Iranian embassy in Vienna, over their involvement in a plot to detonate a car bomb in Paris. The object of their attack was the annual Grand Gathering hosted by the MEK.

Further terror attacks were coordinated in Albania, where 2,000 members of the MEK are living in exile. Authorities in Denmark also reported foiling a planned assassination to be carried out by Iranian agents against a member of the opposition.

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Lord Maginnis a longtime supporter of MEK

Lord Maginnis Urges Western Lawmakers to Seize the Opportunity to Confront the Iranian Threat and Stand with the Iranian People

Lord Maginnis a longtime supporter of MEK

Archive Photo- Lord Maginnis (right) speaking at a news conference organized by the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) exposing the Iranian regime’s rise in terrorist activities in Europe- September 2018

On Sunday, December 16th, the Daily Caller published an op-ed by Kenneth Maginnis, a member of the United Kingdom’s House of Lords. Maginnis’ article, entitled “2019 Brings New Opportunity to Topple the Iranian Regime”, urges policymakers and legislators around the world to re-examine their stance towards the Iranian regime in light of the developments of 2018.

A Year of Change

Maginnis points out that one year ago, “the 2015 nuclear deal was in full effect”, “Iran’s domestic situation appeared relatively stable”, and “the Iranian threat to Western nations was largely theoretical and vaguely defined”.

Now, twelve months later, the Us has re-imposed sanctions, Iran’s domestic situation is increasingly unstable, and “the United States and Europe have faced down at least four terrorist plots targeting Iranian activists on Western soil”.

The Trump administration’s shift away from appeasement and adoption of a tougher stance towards the Iranian regime has been welcomed by the Iranian opposition and the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK). However, Europe has been reluctant to follow T

Sanctions Could be on the Horizonrump’s lead.

That could be changing. Following further ballistic missile testing from the Iranian regime, the UN Security Council conducted a meeting which Maginnis says was at the request of the French and UK governments.

Following a foiled Iranian terror attack in Paris this summer, the French government conducted an investigation into Iranian state-sponsored terrorism in Europe. The investigation concluded without any doubt that the Iranian regime’s leadership was involved in the planning and execution of the June 30th plot.

Assadi’s Extradition Follows Months of Lies and Drama from Iranian Regime

After the conclusion of this investigation, there have been signs that the European Union may be rethinking its position and considering sanctions. 150 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) recently signed a statement calling for the expulsion of all regime agents involved in state-sponsored terrorism from European soil.

The Iranian Regime’s Position in Power Look Increasingly Precarious

In addition to international isolation, the regime’s position in power looks increasingly uncertain. The Iranian opposition and the MEK has had a major role in the spread of mass anti-government demonstrations in 2018. Demonstrations that Maginnis asserts, “the Iranian regime has been struggling to contain”.

What began as a huge nationwide protest that affected all of Iran’s major towns and cities in all 31 provinces, has splintered into numerous demonstrations affecting all of Iran’s key industries, including the steel industry, sugarcane, universities, teachers, logistics, and retail sectors.

Prior to 2018, the MEK’s leader, president-elect Maryam Rajavi, called for 2018 to be a “year full of uprisings”. It has not disappointed.

Even with the rampant protests taking place daily across Iran, Western policymakers have been slow to react. However, the situation is reaching a tipping point. Maginnis writes, “the evolution of Iran’s domestic situation has provided the world with an unprecedented opportunity to effectively confront this threat while also helping the Iranian people to bring about change in their country”.

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UNGA condemns Iranian regimes gross violations of human rights in Iran

Iranian Opposition Groups Celebrate UN Resolution to Condemning Iranian Human Rights Abuses

UNGA condemns Iranian regimes gross violations of human rights in Iran

The UN General Assembly condemned the gross violations of human rights in Iran for the 65th time in the row- December 17, 2018

In a landmark moment for Iran, the UN Security Council voted to adopt a resolution condemning human rights abuses carried out by the Iranian regime. The pivotal vote saw 84 votes in favor of the motion, while 30 voted against it. There were 67 abstentions.  \

Of particular concern to the UN Security Council, was the Iranian regime’s high number of executions, including its application in cases where the alleged perpetrator committed the crime as a juvenile, before the age of 18.

The UN also cited, “the widespread and systematic use of arbitrary detention”, appalling prison conditions, and “cases of suspicious deaths in custody”.

Discriminatory Practices

The UN also called on Iran to end its discrimination of women, and its “severe limitations and restrictions on the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion or belief”.

The resolution highlights the persecution and violence carried out against Sufi Muslims, Christians, Jews, Sunni Muslims, and members of the Baha’I faith within Iran.

A Victory for the Iranian Opposition

Iranian opposition and the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) welcomed the resolution.

The president-elect of the Iranian opposition, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi said in a statement that the resolution, “once again confirmed that the regime blatantly tramples upon the Iranian people’s most fundamental rights in all political, social and economic spheres”. She added that the regime is “in no way congruous with the 21st century and must be isolated by the world community”.

The resolution is not all-encompassing, and it fails to address several aspects of the regime’s brutal oppression and persecution campaigns, however, it may suggest a departure with the international community’s decades-long position of inaction which has emboldened the mullahs and allowed human rights abuses to continue unchallenged.

Justice for the 1988 Massacre

One area which the MEK and the Iranian public has been calling for acknowledgment and an investigation into the regime’s conduct is in the 1988 massacres.

In the summer of 1988, the regime executed more than 30,000 political dissidents, burying them in secret mass graves. Many of the perpetrators and murderers still hold senior positions in the Iranian regime.

The UN Must Investigate the 1988 Massacre

Following a recent report from Amnesty International which condemned the regime for its deplorable and despicable actions in 1988, and the persistence coverup since, many Iranians are calling for a UN investigation into the crimes and for those responsible to be brought to justice for their crimes against humanity.

Maryam Rajavi mentioned the 1988 massacre in her statement. She called it, “one of the most obvious examples of crimes against humanity after the Second World War”.

She asserted that the international silence following the atrocities has allowed the regime to carry out “more brutal violations of human rights”, and “assured them [the mullahs] that their crimes in other parts of the world will go unanswered”.

The president-elect concluded, “the international community should investigate the crimes of this regime, especially the 1988 massacre, and refer the dossier of these crimes to the UN Security Council”, adding, “this is not only the right of the Iranian people but also a prerequisite for peace and the fight against terrorism”.

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Ashraf 3 Conference interconnected to 41 other locations around the world-December 15, 2018

MEP Calls on Western Politicians to Recognise the Influence of the Iranian Opposition

Ashraf 3 Conference interconnected to 41 other locations around the world-December 15, 2018

The international conference of the Iranian communities, in Ashraf 3 (MEK’s residence in Albania)-December 15, 2018

Member of the European Parliament (MEP) and the former European Minister of Poland, Ryszard Czarnecki, had a piece published on Modern Diplomacy on December 15th. Titled, ‘The Success of Iranian Activism Shows the Way to Correct European Politics’, the piece calls on Western politicians to recognize the influence of the Iranian opposition within the Iranian political landscape and adjust their Iran policies accordingly.

Calls to Action

Czarnecki began his article by praising the increasing number of Western governments making a serious push for firm collective action against the Iranian regime. He cites the foiled terror attacks in Albania and Paris that took place this summer, as well as the arrest of two Iranian agents in the US on espionage charges, and the attempted assassination of a political dissident in Denmark as flashpoints that have led to a gradually hardening attitude towards the mullahs.

Pulling Back the Curtain on the Regime’s Foiled Terror Attacks

Following the failed bomb attack in Paris, the French authorities mounted an investigation and “concluded there was no doubt about Tehran’s responsibility for the Paris plot”. Czarnecki writes, “the stage was seemingly set for the entire EU to adopt economic sanctions that France had already imposed on the [Iranian] Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS) and its agents”.

But the collective response and application of economic sanctions from the EU never came. “The desire for continued access to Iranian markets is surely part of the reason for this”, Czarnecki explains.

Another reason is that, unlike the US, Czarnecki asserts that European policymakers may not be as familiar with the pro-democratic forces already operating within the Iranian landscape. The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), and the leader of Iran’s opposition, president-elect Maryam Rajavi, have a host of allies inside the Trump administration. As a result, American policymakers are aware of the organizational capabilities and popularity of the Iranian opposition within Iran.

Czarnecki wrote:

“It might also be said that the US administration is much more aware of the existence of powerful allies inside Iranian society and the expatriate population. After all, some White House officials and close confidants of the US president have been regular attendees at NCRI rallies, including the one that was nearly bombed in June.”

Czarnecki believes that Europe’s reluctance to adopt the US’s approach and administer economic sanctions “might evaporate altogether if more European policymakers were made aware of the organizational capabilities of the MEK”.

Even among the Iranian clerical regime’s leadership, there is an increasing willingness to acknowledge the MEK’s role in mobilizing the Iranian public. The Supreme Leader Khamenei blamed the MEK for the rapid spread of anti-government protests in December and January last year.

Iranian communities around the world have also been working tirelessly to demonstrate their support of the MEK and its leader. On December 15th, Iranian communities in 42 locations across the globe, including countries in Europe, North America, and Australia, hosted simultaneous conferences calling for a collective response from Western governments to the increased Iranian terror threat.

The global teleconference drew attention to the many strikes and protests raging across Iran’s key sectors. “The persistence of those demonstrations is a clear sign of the activist community’s strength and the very real prospects for the popular overthrow of the world’s most foremost state sponsor of terrorism”, Czarnecki writes.

Czarnecki concludes, “proper recognition of the Iranian democratic opposition will prove once and for all that a firm alternative is not only justified but imperative for a triumph of democracy in the Middle East”.

Staff Writer

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