Taken from the Social media on the Iranian regime’s main existential threat, the MEK.
Leashing the mullahs, Europe and the US granted many concessions to the Iranian regime in the past three decades. This “generosity”, sadly, emboldened this regime to expand its terrorism and violation of human rights and also to deal with its deadly economic and most importantly political crises.
An Iranian terrorist, Ghafour Darjazi, had a key role in the assassination of Dr. Abulrahman Ghasemlo, the Secretary-General of Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran in July 1989. He escaped justice; in a suspicious deal, along with other terrorists, when he was extradited to Iran by Austrian officials. Three years later, again, under the alias Amir-Mansour Bozorgian he participated in the assassination of Mohammadreza Naqdi, the representative of the main Iranian opposition, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), in Italy; he was the field commander of the assassination scene.
Ghafour Darjazi, also known as Amir-Mansour Bozorgian or Mustafa Moddaber, served the Iranian regime in many positions including executive manager of the Iranian National Security Council, head of the Iranian National TV’s security, and head of Parliament’s security.
After the assassination of the representative of NCRI in Switzerland, Dr. Kazem Rajavi, brother of Massoud Rajavi, the leader of the Iranian resistance, the west did a dirty deal for the release of the terrorists. That same evening, Akhundzadeh and Hadi Najafabadi, along with a number of other terrorists, returned to Iran on a direct Iran Air flight.
victims of the Iranian regime’s terrorism
Three years later, on November 14, 1992, the German secret services informed France that two Iranian secret agents had crossed the Strasbourg border into France and that the names of the two were Mahmoud Sajjadian and Ali Kamali. The Swiss wanted them in connection with the killing of an Iranian opposition figure. The two men arrived in France with Iranian passports under the names Ahmad Taheri and Mohsen Sharifi Esfahani on Iranian passports. On November 15, 1992, France arrested the two men. In the last days of 1992 (January 1993), a three-member delegation from the regime went from Tehran to Paris, and after a dirty deal on January 8, the two terrorists were taken to Tehran. On December 29, the French Foreign Ministry sent a note to Switzerland that the two Iranians would not be extradited to Switzerland for the sake of French national interests.
Campaign Coordinator for Change in Iran, Struan Stevenson, in an article in United Press reported on the failure of European policy towards the Iranian regime and the terrorist acts of the regime in Europe and wrote:
The main policy of export and import to Iran was via Intex It can, and will, easily lift US sanctions. But that didn’t work. On June 6, a diplomat from the Iranian regime’s embassy in Vienna in Bavaria was arrested on terrorism charges. Assadullah Assadi is said to have delivered over 500 grams of explosives and a detonator to an Iranian couple from Belgium and ordered them to go to Paris and bomb a large gathering organized by the National Council of Resistance of Iran and the MEK. 7,000 people were going to be blown up, including prominent figures such as Rudy Giuliani and Newt Gingrich and Bill Richardson.
Assadollah Asadi, a diplomat terrorist of the Iranian regime is in custody in Belgium
All warnings of the MEK about the Iranian regime’s terrorism has turned into bitter reality. If one day the west could turn a blind eye on the mullahs’ terrorism, now it is hard to do so. The Iranian regime has dragged terrorism on the European soil and it is hard to ignore it anymore. The policy of appeasement lost many of its allies and this policy is on the verge of collapse.
Orally, there have been many hollow promises by Europeans; however, on the ground, nothing is tangible for the Iranian regime. Clearly, the balance of power has changed and the Iranian regime does not have the upper hand in any negotiation and cannot take the world hostage by its terrorism anymore.
The Iranian regime did its best to release Asadi, its diplomat- terrorist, and his accomplices, but all its efforts were in vain and they are still in custody; the Belgium prosecutors’ documents are undeniable.
While on the one hand, the policy of appeasement has failed and its days are numbered, and on the other hand, the world would not be blackmailed by the Iranian regime, for the west, betting on a dead horse is not a wise decision.
Historical leaders of 120 years of Iranian struggle for freedom
Iranians refer to the early part of the 20th century as the “Age of Awaking” from the bondage of the absolute monarchy under the Qajar Kings. The Constitutional Revolution of 1906 marked the culmination of a broad movement of a quarter-century by the people of Iran to break free from monarchic despotism and propelled the nation’s popular movement for a modern democratic state.
Gradually, freedom fighters were suppressed and dictatorship returned and finally a British-backed coup installed an illiterate officer, Reza Pahlavi, to the throne in 1921. The wartime Allies forced Reza Shah to abdicate due to his Nazi sympathies in 1941. His son, Mohammad Reza assumed the reins of power. The Iranian people’s movement for democracy, forced the new Monarch into retreat, enabling Dr. Mohammad Mossadeq to become the Prime Minister in 1951. The popular Prime Minister nationalized Iran’s oil industry, which was until then controlled by the Anglo-Iranian Petroleum Company. The move drew the ire of the British, who along with the United States and the backing of the Royal Court and the reactionary clerics, engineered the August 1953 coup that toppled Mossadeq’s government.
The increasingly brutal dictatorship of the Shah, which had suppressed all forms of peaceful and reformist political opposition, led to the founding in 1965 of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (PMOI/MEK) by three Muslim university graduates, Mohammad Hanifnejad, a 26-year-old agricultural engineer, Saeed Mohsen, a civil engineer, and Ali-Asghar Badizadegan, an assistant professor in chemical engineering.
The MEK challenged both the Shah’s regime and the fundamentalist interpretation of Islam espoused by the clerical establishment, which by and large supported the status quo.
The founders’ advocacy of a tolerant and democratic Islam had tremendous appeal not only among Iranian intellectuals but also among the middle class and the bazaar, the pillar of Iran’s economy. Considering itself as the disciple of Dr. Mossadeq, the MEK founders’ active resistance to the Shah, inspired the Iranian people to join the anti-monarchic movement.
Despite the execution of its founders by the Shah’s secret police, SAVAK in 1972 and the clerical regime’s brutal onslaught on the MEK, resulting in the murder of 120,000 of its members and sympathizers, the organization has emerged as the largest and best-organized opposition movement. On September 6, 2019, it celebrated the start of its 55th year at an elaborate event at the organization’s new home in Albania, Ashraf 3.
“In the past half-century, throughout trials and tribulations, you supported your organization and movement. The 54th anniversary of this organization is the result of your toil and is your victory. On behalf the members and supporters of MEK, I would like to salute our great founders Mohammad Hanifnejad, Saeed Mohsen and Ali Asghar Badizadegan. By sacrificing their lives, they made a breakthrough and started a new era in the history of Iran. And we salute our (MEK’s historical leader) Massoud Rajavi and (NCRI’s President-elect) Maryam Rajavi who have set an example of sacrifice and honesty in the history of struggles for freedom.”
Now, after so many years and so much hardship and suffering, the struggle of Iranian people has reached a turning point. Freedom and democracy are within reach as never before.
MEK’s Secretary-General underscored that the mortal conditions with which the regime is faced
“has a much deeper root than international sanctions and major loss of revenues. Owing especially to the impact of the protest movement and the organized resistance, the mullahs have reached a point where they lack the capacity to reproduce the source of their survival. Western government’s appeasement policy, fake reformers, and other parties assisting the regime have run out of steam. While facing the prospects of being overthrown, the velayat-e faqih regime, unlike previous periods, has no savior and is rapidly moving towards its demise.”
“At this juncture, the active resistance of the MEK, the Resistance Units and Councils as well as this movement’s unrelenting political campaign internationally aimed at defeating the conspiracies of the mullahs and their advocates and restoring the rights of the Iranian people and Resistance, has brightened the prospects of the regime’s overthrow,” Ms. Merrikhi added.
The Free Iran rally in Washington D.C, June 21, 2019- Over ten thousand Iranians took to the streets of Washington D.C to express support for the uprising in Iran and in support of the MEK.
September 6th marks the 54th anniversary of the MEK’s foundation. Over the course of its history, the MEK has dealt a series of crushing blows to the Iranian regime. The following are some of the organization’s greatest hits, according to the NCRI.
Exposed Khomeini’s Human Rights Violations
When the Shah was toppled on February 11, 1979, only the MEK dared to challenge Khomeini. While six million Iranians rushed to greet Khomeini in Tehran, Massoud Rajavi (the historical leader of the MEK) began giving speeches warning the people about the freedoms they would soon lose. For the first two years of Khomeini’s rule, the MEK held peaceful meetings, rallies, and protests, which were violently attacked by the regime’s suppressive forces. over 50 MEK activists were killed and thousands more were arrested while participating in these peaceful gatherings.
500000 Iranian, supporters of MEK, took to street participating in a peaceful rally against suppression imposed by the Iranian regime on Jun 20, 1981, in Iran
On June 20, 1981, the MEK held a massive rally in Tehran. 500,000 people were in attendance when Khomeini ordered his Revolutionary Guards to open fire on the peaceful protesters. Thousands were murdered since then. There was no doubt after that point that Khomeini was a brutal dictator.
Exposed the Global Threat Posed by the Iranian Regime
After Khomeini’s death, Western leaders embraced the policy of appeasement toward the mullahs, hoping that by doing so they could reap the benefits of doing business with the Iranian regime and avoid the threat to global stability posed by the regime. The MEK sought to expose the global threat posed by the Iranian regime and their state sponsorship of terrorism. Mrs. Maryam Rajavi has gained wide international support for the right of the Iranian people to overthrow their oppressors. And in 2019, the United States designated the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization after years of urging from the MEK.
Exposed the Regime’s Nuclear Program
In 2002, the NCRI exposed the regime’s secret nuclear program at a press conference in Washington, D.C. MEK intelligence inside Iran uncovered evidence of a uranium enrichment site at Natanz and a heavy-water reactor in Arak, triggering an investigation by the U.N. nuclear watchdog. The MEK and NCRI released details of numerous other illicit activities, which were subsequently confirmed by the U.N. The resulting sanctions are severe and ongoing.
Negotiated an End to the Iran-Iraq War Five Years Before Khomeini
The 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War was prolonged long after Iraq withdrew its forces from Iran. The MEK, which had fought against the Iraqis since their invasion, saw no need for the war to continue after the withdrawal of forces and brokered a peace plan between the MEK and the Iraqi government. Khomeini rejected the plan, vowing to fight until Iraq or Iran were destroyed.
Khomeini was eventually persuaded to agree to a cease-fire..five years later.
MEK’s Call for Justice for Victims of the 1988 Massacre
During the 1988 Massacre, while 30,000 political prisoners were being executed over the course of a single summer, Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri, Khomeini’s heir-apparent, spoke out against the executions. He described the massacre as the “greatest crime against humanity for which history will condemn us.” Khomeini dismissed him. Montazeri was later placed under house arrest, where he remained until his death. An audiotape was found in 2016 of Montazeri’s discussions with members of the 1988 Death Commissions. In the tapes, he expressed his dismay over the immorality of the executions. The discovery of the audiotapes, and prior to that Maryam Rajavi’s call for justice and various campaigns exposing the extent of the crime and its perpetrators led to further demands for investigations into the 1988 Massacre and justice for its victims.
The President-elect Maryam Rajavi, speaking at Ashraf 3, on the occasion of the 54th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK)- September 3, 2019
Friday will mark the 54th anniversary of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK’s) founding. On Tuesday, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), gave a speech at Ashraf-3 in honor of the occasion. Mrs. Rajavi honored the founders of the MEK—Mohammad Hanifnejad, Saeed Mohsen, and Asghar Badizadegan—as well as it is past and present leaders, and she recounted some of the organization’s history and the sacrifices made by its members. She also emphasized the importance of the goals of the MEK and assured those present that they are capable of leading Iran toward freedom and progress.
I want to assure the people of #Iran that the PMOI/MEK is capable of overthrowing the regime by relying on their people.They can replace religious tyranny with freedom, democracy, & separation of religion and state, leading Iran to freedom, prosperity & progress. #FreeIran#MEK54pic.twitter.com/XjDPzgiXMa
The following are some of the highlights from her speech:
Founders and Leaders
“The founders of the MEK stepped into a difficult and unfamiliar path, but they broke through the impasse by an admirable faith and confidence. They started everything anew, a professional struggle based on an ideology which rejected exploitation, and promoted sacrifice and selflessness,” Mrs. Rajavi said.
“Today, the great founder of the PMOI, Mohammad Hanifnejad, is watching us and is present among us. He can see that the seed he planted has now turned into a lush and blossoming jungle,” she continued.
Mrs. Rajavi spoke about how proud she was to be a member of an organization with progressive leadership and values.
“I am proud to be a member of an organization and a resistance movement led by Massoud Rajavi for five decades in a formidable struggle against two dictatorships, and towards progress and evolution,” she said.
Massoud-Rajavi, the historical leader of the Iranian Opposition.
“From the bottom of my heart, I am proud to be a member of an organization and a movement where women have been at the helm for over 30 years of its 54-year existence,” Mrs. Rajavi continued. “The Secretary-Generals leading the MEK in these years are my dear sisters: Fahimeh Arvani, Shahrzad Sadr, Mahvash Sepehri, Beheshteh Shadrou, Mojgan Parsaii, Sedigheh Hosseini, Zohreh Akhyani and Zahra Merrikhi. Every one of them has represented great values in the ranks of the organization. They have been symbols of sincerity and integrity, energy and vivacity, strength and firmness, leadership and resilience, selflessness, modesty and humility, accountability, truthfulness, steadfastness, patience, and triumph,” she added.
The MEK’s Goals
“The People Mojahedin Organization of Iran(PMOI/ MEK) is a treasure trove filled with the Iranian people’s historical steadfastness. And I assure you that this organization spearheads the Iranian society’s quest for liberation from tyranny, discrimination, and injustice, and it will realize the true aspirations of the people of Iran for a glorious future,” said Mrs. Rajavi.
“This has been the subject of the People Mojahedin Organization of IranPMOI’s 54-year struggle. It has been the goal of 120,000 of the best children of the people of Iran. This is what hundreds of thousands of political prisoners have been tortured and suffered for, and millions and millions of dissidents have endured its pain under oppression. The essence of the PMOI’s quest is freedom and equality,” she added.
“In contrast to the one-dimensional outlooks of various opposing schools of thought over the past two centuries, the PMOI set both freedom and equality as their goals. They have risen up for breaking the chains of repression, and for eliminating discrimination and injustice. The PMOI has made great sacrifices over the past 40 years in its struggle for freedom. The PMOI’s name is synonymous with the word “freedom.” At the same time, this is a movement determined to obliterate oppression and exploitation,” she emphasized.
Mrs. Rajavi described the mullahs’ history of corruption, beginning with the confiscation of all public property by Khomeini in 1979 and continuing to the present day.
“They have taken over public lands, forests, natural resources, waters, the environment, banks, the national money market, factories, public companies, the lion’s share of oil, gas and petrochemical revenues, communications, and the market of internet software,” she said.
Rajavi stressed that Khamenei’s corruption has led to “destitution, poverty, and homelessness” among the Iranian people.
“Today, the situation in Iran is so disastrous that people have to sell their kidneys; they have to sleep on the streets; women even sell their infants, and destitute women do not have any form of support. All honorable Iranians are deeply upset by such tragic conditions,” she said.
Mrs. Rajavi discussed the MEK’s commitment to democratic Islam and its rejection of “the mullahs’ abuse of Islam to gain power and wealth.”
“In the beginning, Mohammad Hanifnejad rejected those interpretations of Islam which advocated exploitation. He showed that Islam does not defend oppressive classes, but is on the side of the deprived and the oppressed,” she explained.
“A decade later, Massoud Rajavi underlined the threat posed by the reactionary religious outlooks, drew the line between the Islam which the PMOI believed in and the reactionary version which later seized power,” Mrs. Rajavi continued.
“The PMOI believes in the original faith introduced by Mohammad whose emancipating message rejected class oppression as well as racial and gender discrimination. It defends women’s equality and the autonomy of oppressed ethnic groups. It advocates people’s sovereignty and does not accept any form of coercion and compulsion,” she added.
The MEK’s Message Today
Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), entering the 54th founding ceremony of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK)
“It is possible to break the chains of repression and exploitation.
“It is possible to liberate society from gender discrimination and create new relations based on gender equality and human solidarity.
“Freedom and justice are part and parcel. It is possible to instate freedom, justice, and equality and the MEK has risen to realize this goal.
“It is possible to have a genuine antithesis based on democratic Islam overcome ignorance, superstition, and reaction disguised in the cloak of Islam,” Mrs. Rajavi stated.
“Having compensated for the shortcomings of the revolutions of the past century, the Iranian Resistance has matured in the 21st century and borne fruit in the course of its struggle for freedom and equality,” she said.
“This is the organization, the tradition, the path and practice of the deprived but aware youths of Iran who created the uprisings of December 2017 and January 2018,” she continued.
“This is the movement and ideal of youths who have formed their resistance units and kept the flame of Iran’s uprising alight in every city across the country and inside the cells and wards of Khamenei’s prisons.
“They are resisting everywhere. By relying on its people, the great Army of Freedom will also take the same path to turn this dark page of Iran’s history,” she declared.
Mrs. Rajavi emphasized the resilience of the MEK in the face of torture and persecution, saying:
“There is not an infinitesimal possibility that the MEK would give up on their plan for freedom and popular sovereignty and the overthrow of the mullahs’ religious dictatorship.
And this is the pride which shines throughout the history of the MEK.
“They endured captivity in the cage and coffin, they went through the 1988 Massacre; they went to the gallows by the thousands; they lied down before Humvees and bulldozers in Ashraf; their bodies were hanged from the cliff in Charzebar or from beams in half-constructed buildings in cities across Iran, but they’re never was an infinitesimal possibility for them to give up their fight, and they will not do so until the day Iran is free.
In the contemporary history of Iran, the MEK is known for its commitment to carry on their bloody shoulders any burden that is necessary for the advancement of their struggle.”
Finally, Mrs. Rajavi sent words of encouragement to the people of Iran who are still waiting for freedom from the mullahs’ regime.
“I want to give assurances to the people of Iran that the MEK is capable of overthrowing the regime by relying on their people,” she emphasized. They are capable of replacing religious tyranny with freedom, democracy, and separation of religion and state. They can replace distrust with trust, insecurity, and fear with security, and injustice with equality.
“They are capable of leading Iran towards freedom, prosperity, and progress,” she concluded.
Mohammad Hanifnejad, Saeed Mohsen and Ali Asghar Badizadegan founded the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK /PMOI) on September 5, 1965
Fifty- four years ago, the People’s Mujahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), was founded by Mohammad Hanifnejad and two other young intellectuals, Saeed Mohsen and Ali Asghar Badizadegan. The three wanted to establish a Muslim, progressive, patriotic, and democratic organization. They were determined to pave the way for a democratic government to replace the Shah’s regime.
.@Maryam_Rajavi: By founding the #PMOI/#MEK three great men of Iran’s contemporary history –Mohammad Hanifnejad, Saeed Mohsen & Ali Asghar Badizadegan–did away with everything that was regressive, out-of-date and oppressive & replaced them with the progressive ideas.#Iranpic.twitter.com/5O5oljhged
In the first six years, the MEK succeeded, for the first time, to introduce a new, systematic and comprehensive vision of Islam that was entirely independent of what was espoused and advocated by the fundamentalist mullahs who considered the interpretation of Islam their exclusive domain.
The 1950s and 1960s in Iran were marked by repression against dissidents. After the 1953 coup against the popular Prime Minister, Dr. Mohammad Mossadeq, the Shah, and his notorious secret police, the SAVAK, suppressed all political opponents and forced many others into silence.
Under these circumstances, MEK (also referred to as Mujahedin-e Khalq) was founded on September 6, 1965, and eventually became the most enduring Iranian opposition movement.
In a series of raids in August and September 1971, the SAVAK arrested all MEK leaders and 90 percent of its cadres. On May 25, 1972, the founders of the MEK (PMOI) along with two members of its leadership, Mahmoud Asgarizadeh, and Rassoul Meshkinfam, were executed by firing squad after months of imprisonment and torture. With their sacrifice, they became the pioneers in the anti-Shah struggle.
The members and leaders of PMOI/MEK become widely known in society for their defense in the military courts of Shah, in which they defy the ruling power and its corruption
The Iranian Resistance’s Leader Massoud Rajavi was among the MEK leaders arrested by SAVAK. He, like his colleagues, was tried before the Shah’s military tribunals and sentenced to death. His older brother, Prof. Kazem Rajavi, who was renowned for his academic and human rights work in Switzerland, launched a major campaign to save Massoud Rajavi’s life. Several prominent European leaders intervened, including Amnesty International, Francois Mitterrand, and the prominent French Philosopher Jean-Paul Satre, forcing the Shah to commute Massoud Rajavi’s death sentence to life imprisonment.
While in prison and following the execution of MEK’s founders, Massoud Rajavi assumed the leadership of the organization and declared the reactionary and backward interpretation of Islam, espoused by Khomeini and his band of clerics, as the most serious threat to the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people.
Archive photo: The “Mothers” demonstration, on May 2, 1981, when over 200,000 supporters of the MEK, took it to the streets of Tehran to protest the killing of 2 teenage girls (MEK activists), who were shot dead for distributing information behind a stand in one of the streets in Mazandaran.
52 unarmed residents, members of MEK, were slaughtered in Camp Ashraf on 1st Sep 2013
This September 1 marks the sixth anniversary of the 2013 Camp Ashraf massacre. Iraqi security forces, acting at the behest of the Iranian regime, shot to death, execution-style, some with their hands tied behind their backs, 52 unarmed Iranian dissidents, of Iran’s main opposition movement, the Mujahedin-e Khalq (PMOI/MEK).
Iraqi forces at the behest of Iranian regime killed 52 residents of Camp Ashraf in 2013
Several, initially wounded, were shot in the head in the Camp’s clinic while being treated. All the medical staff were also murdered. The assault force abducted seven more residents, including six women.
The attack took place at a time that MEK members were granted ‘protected persons’ status under the Fourth Geneva Convention and the United States had guaranteed Their protection.
Over the past six years, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), has repeatedly called on the United Nations Secretary-General and the High Commissioner for Human Rights to conduct an independent and comprehensive investigation into the September 1, 2013 massacre and to hold those responsible to account.
On September 2, 2017, while honoring the fallen heroes of the 2013 massacre, Mrs. Rajavi said, “
We pledge to always remember their sacrifice and wage an unrelenting battle that will overthrow the mullahs’ religious dictatorship. Indeed, each moment in that historic confrontation in Ashraf that September day was astonishing. Let us remember the words of Massoud Rajavi, the Resistance’s Leader, who said, “If you were to ask me to give a simple definition of the word Mojahed, I would say that being a Mojahed means adhering to one’s pledge through eternal sacrifice in the history of Iran.”
Mrs. Rajavi elaborated on the regime’s motives for planning and carrying out the massacre at Camp Ashraf.
“What they sought was to either physically annihilate the PMOI/MEK or to force them to surrender. And that left no other options. Over the past years, in the context of the choice between giving up or continuing the fight, the PMOI/MEK has always chosen to persevere and fight on, the very choice that has been the secret to the movement’s survival and advancement,” she said.
In an article about the massacre of MEK members on 1 Sep 2015, retired Army Col. Wesley Martin, a former base commander in Camp Ashraf wrote, “Suddenly on September 1, 2013, fifty-two wonderful lives were extinguished and seven others were taken hostage by the brutality of a corrupt government. Their lives have been taken, but their memories will never be lost as long as we live and the spirit of democracy lives within each of us. The time will come in the future when we are together again. We will appreciate the opportunity we had to know and work with each other in this life. We will also be proud of knowing we never gave up on each other and never gave up on striving to bring peace and stability to the world.”
Honoring the memory of the victims in Iran
Supporters of MEK commemorate 1 Sep victims in Tehran, Iran
During the past six years, MEK supporters inside Iran have held ceremonies to honor the memory of Ashraf residents murdered on September 1, 2013. Taking up serious risks of arrest and persecution by regime security forces, they have also placed posters in memory of the 52 martyrs on walls, phone booths and other public areas in cities across Iran.
Former Irish Minister and member of the parliament, Mr. John Perry, speaking at MEK’s rally in Stockholm- Demonstrators, hold a banner, with Massoud Rajavi and Maryam Rajavi’s photo in the front row, calling for solidarity with the Iranian people’s uprising for a free Iran-July 21, 2019
The Iranian regime poses a threat to peace and stability in the Middle East and across the world, and Europe should support the main Iranian Opposition as the democratic alternative to the mullahs’ clerical dictatorship, writes former Irish Member of Parliament John Perry in an op-ed for the Eurasia Review.
In his August 29th opinion piece, the former lawmaker and Minister of State for Small Business wrote that the Iranian regime is “extremely unpopular among both Iranians and regional countries, and is today the greatest threat to a prosperous Iran and to stability and peace in the Middle East and the world.”
According to Mr. Perry, the regime and the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) have persecuted, tortured, and killed countless Iranians over their 40-year rule. He cited the 1988 Massacre of 30,000 political prisoners, most of whom were MEK members, as his prime example.
“The IRGC’s destabilizing interventions in the region have resulted in hundreds of thousands of innocent people being killed and have displaced millions,” he wrote.
A Key Component
“A key component that has been overlooked for too long is the organized Iranian opposition,” Mr. Perry continued. “Thousands of Iranians recently rallied in London to remind participants in that debate, particularly in Europe, of the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people and their coalition of opposition, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI).”
Perry explained that the MEK “played a major role in organizing and promoting a nationwide uprising at the beginning of 2018,” forcing even Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to acknowledge their role in popularizing the message of regime change.
“More and more Iranian officials have been speaking publicly about the MEK in a way that it is evident Tehran recognizes the challenge it poses to the theocratic system. Such trends leave Western policymakers with no excuse for ignoring the resistance or denying the potential for domestically-driven regime change,” Perry emphasized.
Mr. Perry stressed that the Iranian Resistance has not asked for either financial or military support. “They have simply called on the EU to adopt a firm policy on Iran and to designate the regime’s Supreme Leader, Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, and Ministry of Intelligence as terrorist entities,” he wrote.
“No Iran expert or Western diplomat can seriously dispute the fact that these entities are involved in terrorism abroad and have been responsible for domestic repression since the 1979 revolution,” he added.
“Its progressive leader Maryam Rajavi has presented a 10-point plan for the future of Iran, which envisions and guarantees a free, democratic, secular, non-nuclear and peaceful Iran, with an independent judiciary system that respects the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” he stated.
“Maryam Rajavi’s vision for Iran’s future will surely be beneficial to the interests of the entire international community and I am convinced that the Iranian people and their resistance movement are our best allies for bringing that future about,” Perry continued.
Mr. Perry wrote that the regime is currently at the weakest point in its 40-year history, and the NCRI believes that regime change is now within reach by the Iranian people. “Thus, the EU does not need to directly engage in the process, but must only put pressure on the Iranian regime and hold its leaders to account for their atrocities and terrorism at home and abroad,” he explained.
“This does not equate to encouraging conflict or war but rather signals to the Iranian people and their Resistance movement that it has the support of an international community that recognizes the people’s aspirations for freedom and democracy,” Perry added.
Economic Protests Spread
Meanwhile in Iran, workers and defrauded investors held at least eight protests over the course of two days to demand basic economic rights. The protests are emblematic of the growing unrest among the Iranian people as the regime continues to weaken.
Widespread corruption among Iran’s businesses, approximately half of which are controlled by the regime’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), has led to constant protests by defrauded credit customers and investors. Protests this week were held by defrauded creditors of the Shadi Gold Institution, defrauded buyers of Ramak Khodro cars, and defrauded members of the Tehran Electrical Workers’ Housing Cooperatives.
Workers and pensioners also held a number of protests demanding their unpaid wages and pensions and striking for basic rights as workers. Protests were held by workers at HEPCO and Farabi Petrochemical Company and pensioners at Western Azerbaijan Telecommunications company.
In a statement on October 22, 1993, the Iranian Resistance’s Leader Massoud Rajavi announced the NCRI’s historic decision. “This decision is proof of the political maturity of the only democratic political alternative of the clerical regime. Maryam Rajavi embodies the ideals of the majority of Iranians in their struggle for freedom, emancipation, economic development, peace, and peaceful coexistence,” Mr. Rajavi said.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) elected Mrs. Maryam Rajavi as the President-elect for the transitional period after the mullahs’ overthrow
Who is Maryam Rajavi?
Maryam Rajavi was born into a middle-class family in Tehran. One of her brothers, Mahmoud, a veteran member of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (PMOI/MEK), was a political prisoner during the Shah’s regime. Her older sister Narges was murdered by the Shah’s secret police, SAVAK, in 1975. Her younger sister, Massoumeh, an industrial engineering student, was arrested by the clerical regime in 1982. Pregnant at the time, she was ultimately hanged after undergoing brutal torture. Rajavi joined the MEK in the 1970s. Following the 1979 anti-monarchic revolution, she was a candidate in the first parliamentary elections in Iran in 1980. Rajavi received over a quarter of million votes. Due to widespread fraud and rigging, however, none of the opposition candidates made it into Parliament.
Rajavi has announced a Ten-point Plan for the future of Iran that calls for the establishment of a democratic republic based on the separation of religion and state and guarantees religious, ethnic and gender equality. Her plan advocates a non-nuclear Iran that will coexist peacefully with its neighbors.
Safi al-Yaseri, Writer and Friend of MEK, Passes away at 72
Acclaimed Iraqi writer and journalist Safi al-Yaseri, 72, passed away on Saturday, August 17th, at a hospital in Turkey. Al-Yaseri was a dear friend of Ashrafis who authored four books and hundreds of articles about Ashraf and the MEK.
Iranian Resistance leader Massoud Rajavi has said that Safi al-Yaseri endured enormous pressures during his life because of his work. He was forced to live in exile and was hunted continuously by those who supported the Iranian regime. But al-Yaseri remained loyal in the struggle for freedom, his country’s independence and taking a stance against the mullahs’ regime, said Mr. Rajavi.
Safi al-Yaseri, a devoted freedom advocate and a true friend of the PMOI/MEK, passed away recently.https://t.co/HXFKSkJER8
— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) August 19, 2019
After graduating from the University of Baghdad, Safi al-Yaseri began a career in journalism following the occupation of Iraq.
Safi al-Yaseri, an Iraqi writer, wrote many books about MEK
Al-Yaseri first became involved with the MEK in the spring of 2003 when he expressed interest in the organization and asked to meet with members in person. He visited Camp Ashraf and found himself in agreement with their core values and mission. Al-Yaseri visited Ashraf many times thereafter and became a close friend to the MEK and its members. He investigated the conspiracies and demonization campaigns surrounding the MEK, traveling to cities and towns across Iraqi Kurdistan. His efforts culminated in a book, entitled
The PMOI and Iraq, which detailed the MEK’s political and financial independence and debunked a number of conspiracy theories about the MEK.
His next book, entitled Democratic Islam, evaluated the MEK’s ideological principles and view of Islam. His third book, The Iranian Woman in Search of Freedom, detailed the struggles of MEK women in the regime’s prisons. Al-Yaseri’s final book, The Devil’s Lies, was a heavily-researched 790-page volume with supporting documents debunking the various allegations made by the Iranian regime against the MEK.
He also wrote hundreds of articles in support of the MEK and their goal of creating a free and democratic Iran.
Condolences from Maryam Rajavi
National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) President Maryam Rajavi conveyed her condolences to the people and writers of Iraq and the Arab world. Mrs. Rajavi said that despite the pressures and threats from the Iranian regime, Safi al-Yaseri never backed down and was never willing to give up his fight against religious fascism. He was loyal to his cause and was a very vivid example of perseverance.
Protest Rally, Place des Nations, Geneva,26/02/2019 – Hundreds of Iranian exiles supporters of the Peoples Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK), carried Iranian flags and banners opposed to the Iranian regime in a rally on Tuesday February, 26,2019 in front of the UN Headquarters in Geneva to protest grave violations of human rights in Iran, particularly the 1988 massacre of more than 30,000 political prisoners (mainly MEK members).
The final day of the Free Iran Conference was dedicated to seeking justice for the 30,000 victims of the 1988 Massacre and their families. A number of dignitaries gave speeches on Monday, but the most memorable words came from survivors of the massacre. Their words are summarized below.
“I spent six years in prison. The Revolutionary Guards arrested me while I was pregnant. I was taken to Evin Prison and the torture chambers. I was transferred to Ward 209. In the cell, I saw four torturers torture my husband in front of me. They also tortured me in front of him,” said Ms. Jokar.
“A few days later, they executed my husband with 75 others. The torturer said his intention was for him to never see his child. When I gave birth to my child, they took me to a hospital and quickly brought me back to prison even though I was very ill. I personally knew 50 MEK pregnant women who were executed, including Masumeh, the sister of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi,” she said.
“In prison, they would not give milk and food for the kids, and my cellmates would provide their sugar rations to me to give something to my baby. There was no doctor or medication for the children. In the public ward, there were only 15 minutes of warm water every other day, which we had to use to give the children a bath. Many of these children had lost their parents,” Ms. Jokar continued.
“The torturers even interrogated the children. They strapped a six-year-old girl to a chair in a dark room and said they would leave her there if she did not reveal the names of her mother’s friends,” she said.
“I managed to escape prison in 1986. All of those ladies who shared the cell with me were executed in the 1988 massacre,” Ms. Jokar said.
“The roots of our hopes and faith in our leaders helped us overcome the dark times in prison and to fight for freedom,” she concluded. Ms. Jokar remained stoic throughout her testimony but many in the room were visibly moved by her words.
“I was a nurse in Tehran. In 1981, I was arrested and imprisoned in Evin Prison and Gohardasht Prison along with many of my colleagues. We were charged with helping the people who were injured by the IRGC,” said Ms. Haj-Hassan.
“In prison, we were subjected to severe tortures. Insomnia, packed cells, sleeping in coffins were what we had to endure,” she said.
“I was in a cage for seven months. These were small partitions where you could only squat. You couldn’t move, you couldn’t even cough or sneeze. If we moved, we were tortured. Our eyes were blindfolded. My eyesight has been degraded and my back was injured. I was operated on five times and yet I still have not recovered,” Ms. Haj-Hassan continued.
“When we came out of the cages, our friends didn’t recognize us. Inside the cage, we had to be prepared for any torture at any moment. The torturers used any excuse to torture us,” she emphasized.
“The torturer told us that we would die here. We were only given three minutes per day to go to the bathroom. We couldn’t even brush our teeth. The food they gave us was scarce and very dirty. At night, when we were allowed to sleep, they would turn on loudspeakers and play the regime’s mourning songs,” she added.
“The torturers sought to break our will and force us to turn our backs on our struggle. I decided that I would not tell the enemy the name of the Mojahed. My friend Shekar was arrested with me, and she was executed in 1988 after suffering torture and the cage,” she stressed.
“I decided to prepare myself for hard days. I scheduled all my moments every day. My program was I started to remember all the songs and the contents of the Mojahedin books and the martyrs’ biographies that I already had read and started to repeat them. I had a physical exercise program. We weren’t allowed to move, but I exercised in my mind. I nursed patients in my mind,” she explained.
“At night, when we couldn’t sleep due to the loudspeakers, I trained myself to shut down those noises and take myself to pleasant places in my memories,” she added.
“The hardest times were the feeling of loneliness. I thought of God, and I thought of my leader, Massoud Rajavi. I spoke to him, and this way, I didn’t feel alone anymore,” Ms. Hassan continued.
“The torturers thought they would break our will through torture. However, they only made us stronger, as we understood that this proved what we were doing was right,” she emphasized.
“In prison, we considered ourselves PMOI representatives, and we deemed it our responsibility to defend their values. When I came out of prison, the first thing I did was to re-join my organization. This is a path that will continue until the end,” Ms. Haj-Hassan concluded. Her speech drew chants and applause from the audience.
“I was in the regime’s prisons for five years and I witnessed many tortures. I was arrested in 1981 because I had participated in a peaceful MEK protest and spent many years in Gohardasht (Rajai Shahr) and Evin prisons. When the regime wasn’t able to break the will of the MEK woman through torture, they created a compound called the ‘residential units,’” said Ms. Jaberi.
“This was a secret compound. I was there for 40 days. From the first day, I was tortured brutally with whips and physically beaten. They took all of us to a room, blindfolded us, and told us that they would kill us until that night. They tortured us for hours until midnight,” she stated.
“My hands were swollen from the whiplashes. My face and body were bruised. The regime’s torturer said, ‘This is your hell. No one will hear you here. You will all die here.’ They kept us awake for many days and didn’t let us sleep,” she continued.
“Some of my friends were kept in this place for six months. We weren’t even allowed to scream under torture. Every command was given with whip lashes. For instance, if they wanted to tell us that we could sleep, they would do so by whipping us,” she added.
“After 40 days, I was taken to Evin Prison. Some of my friends had lost their mental balance. Some of the prisoners would not even speak of the tortures they had suffered. They said that the torturers made them make animal noises and insult themselves. Some had been raped,” Ms. Jaberi explained.
“I have faith that with the leadership of Massoud and Maryam Rajavi, we will free Iran. It was this faith that helped me overcome the tough conditions of the prison,” she concluded to cheers and chants from the audience.
A video clip about the 1988 Massacre was shown to the conference attendees. MEK members held up photographs of loved ones who were martyred in the massacre. Some held more than one photograph. Mrs. Rajavi wiped tears from her eyes during the presentation.
Witnesses to the 1988 Massacre
Majid Saheb Jam
“I was imprisoned for 17 years. My crime was supporting the MEK. I witnessed many human rights violations. The 1988 massacre was a premeditated and well-planned crime. Some of the people who were directly involved in this crime still hold high positions of power. The regime has done everything in its power to hide its crime. It didn’t even tell the families of the victims the whereabouts of the burial places,” said Mr. Sahebjam.
“During the massacre, the judges only asked one question, in a short trial that lasted only a few minutes. They asked, “What are your charges?” Uttering the word ‘Mojahed’ was enough to seal the fate of the prisoner and send him to the gallows,” he added.
“The prisoners in the regime’s dungeons bore the scars of torture on their bodies. The 1988 massacre was an opportunity for the regime to hide the evidence of its horrible crimes. I personally know at least 20 families who have lost two of their children to the executioners of the regime,” he went on.
“Many of the prisoners were aged 14,15 and 16 when they were arrested. These people were later executed by the regime,” he stressed.
“During the 1988 massacre, dozens of MEK supporters had served their sentence. However, they were kept in prison because they would not repent their support for the MEK. They were executed in 1988 because of their dedication to freedom and human values,” Sahebjam concluded.
“I spent 11 years in prison, five of those years in solitary confinement. During the 1988 massacre, I was hospitalized because of torture. I was unconscious in the clinic when they called my name for execution, and this is how I survived,” said Mr. Naderi.
“After the executions, when you were taken to the cells, they asked for your name and checked in a notebook. In the notebook, all the names were crossed, which meant they were executed,” he explained.
“In the beginning, they said nothing of the executions, claiming the prisoners were going for family visits. In many smaller cities, not even a single person survived to tell the story of the massacre,” Mr. Naderi added.
“In prison, I was severely tortured. After eight months of torture, I and five other prisoners were taken to a mullah who said we were enemies of God and would be executed that night. They took us to the place of execution. They tied our hands and we heard the guns being loaded. They fired, but they show a meter above our heads. We suffered a traumatic experience. One of the prisoners fainted and another lost his eyesight,” he said.
“The 1988 massacre was planned from two years before. However, the massacre continues to this day. We must stop this,” Mr. Naderi concluded.
“I spent 10 years in the regime’s prisons. Many of my friends were teenagers when they were arrested. They spent many years in prison and were finally executed. People who had served their sentences and their families were waiting for them. However, they never got to see them,” said Mr. Royaie.
“One of my friends was executed five years after his sentence was finished. He was taken to the gallows just as he defended the name of Mojahed. Many of the prisoners’ families died after hearing that their loved ones were executed. The father of one of my friends had a cardiac arrest when he heard about his son’s execution. So you could say the regime even executed our families,” he said.
“Some of these families are still staring at the pictures of their loved ones and crying after 30 years. Some of the parents lost their sanity when their children were executed,” Mr. Royaie added.
“The regime even executed the disabled and handicapped. Yet these prisoners stood tall when they went to the gallows. One of my friends had lost his mentality due to the tortures. However, when they took him to the judge, he stood tall and said, ‘I’m a Mojahed.’ He was executed,” he recalled.
“The 1988 massacre was a national disaster, but it is also the pride of our nation. Today, people who weren’t even born then are calling for justice. The members of the 1988 ‘Death Commissions’ are members of the government today,” Mr. Royaie said.
“When I think about those brave prisoners, I am humbled. With the justice movement, I feel that they’re here with us, in Ashraf 3,” he concluded.