Posts Tagged ‘NCRI’

Ashraf 3,Edmond Spaho,Iran Opposition,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,MEK Abania,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,Nowruz Celebration,Pandeli Majko,PMOI

Nowruz celebration in MEK's residence in Albania- March 20-2019

MEK Celebrates Nowruz 1398 in Tirana

Nowruz celebration in MEK's residence in Albania- March 20-2019

Nowruz celebration in Ashraf 3, MEK’s compound in Albania-March 20- 2019

On Wednesday, March 20th, members of the MEK and the Iranian Resistance gathered in Tirana, Albania, to celebrate Nowruz, the Persian New Year, which begins on the March 21st at the moment of the vernal equinox. The celebration included speeches from the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran Maryam Rajavi, former Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko, and Deputy Director of the Albanian Democratic Party Edmond Spaho, along with a fireworks display and entertainment.

Maryam Rajavi’s Speech

Maryam Rajavi’s speech highlighted the successes of the MEK and the Iranian opposition over the past year and the progress that has been made in leading the country toward freedom. She described the mullahs’ failed efforts to suppress the Iranian opposition and discredit the MEK, and she provided a roadmap for the upcoming year.

“In these moments just after the turn of the year, we stand with Iran’s workers whose dinner tables are without food,” Mrs. Rajavi said.

“We stand alongside our farmers whose farms are dry and without water. We stand with the honorable teachers of Iran who are discriminated against and humiliated, who are forced to live under the poverty line, and who are imprisoned for their legitimate protests. And we are in alliance with and fighting alongside the army of millions of unemployed youth and graduates whose numbers grow by the year,” she continued.

Rajavi praised the MEK Resistance Units for their work in 1397, the previous Iranian calendar year. “1397 was the year of the expansion of Resistance Units when the strategy of 1,000 Ashrafs and the army of freedom shined brighter than ever in our occupied homeland. In 1397, the uprisings and protests shook the ground under the mullahs’ regime. Last year, the National Liberation Army culminated in 1,000 Ashrafs and Resistance Units, which sprouted in cities across the country. The policy of appeasement was defeated and the mullahs lost one of the main pillars propping up their rule,” she said.

Mrs. Rajavi discussed Iran’s failing economy and described the measures the regime has taken to sell off the country’s resources in order to postpone its inevitable downfall. She emphasized the futility of these efforts. The people have already begun to rise up.

“Still, this regime,” Mrs. Rajavi stressed, “which is close to its downfall, will not be able to save itself with the aid of such treacherous acts. In short, the mullahs have no way out in the face of nationwide uprisings and protests that are encircling them. This results from an understanding of the essence of the uprisings and offers a summary of the past year’s events. The regime’s death knell and internal tensions have left no more openings for it to display hollow shows of moderation.”

Mrs. Rajavi pointed to the appointment of Ebrahim Raisi as the new Judiciary Chief as a sign of desperation by the regime, meant to heal rifts between factions in the government

“Moderation was put to death by the appointment of Ebrahim Raisi as Chief Justice. He is a hated mass murderer who ran against Rouhani in the regime’s presidential elections. Raisi’s appointment was a coup de grace to the elusive myth of moderation. This while Rouhani’s government is half-paralyzed as their showcase foreign minister keeps sitting at home every other day or resigns,” she said.

Mrs. Rajavi pointed out that the problems in Iran go further than any specific crisis within the regime. “Now, the strategy and stances of the Iranian Resistance are echoed by the words and demands of workers, truckers, teachers, students, farmers and all protesters throughout the country: The overthrow of the clerical regime is the desire and demand of all the people of Iran. The problem is not whether this regime is engulfed in this or that crisis; the problem is that the mullahs’ rule is in crisis altogether. Yes, the crisis is the crisis of overthrow,” she said.

Mrs. Rajavi concluded her speech with a description of a free Iran: “We want an Iran replete with freedoms, where children and youths are happy, where talents and potentials are realized, and where women play their role in the leadership of society; a country that lives in peace, friendship, and coexistence with its neighbors. The people of Iran deserve such a country and they will write and create such a destiny with their own hands.”

Pandeli Majko’s Speech

Former Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko followed Mrs. Rajavi’s speech with his own warm wishes for the new year, referring to Ashraf 3, the MEK’s headquarters in Tirana, as the Iranian embassy.

“Everything that is coming is new and hope. Albania and Albanians have one of the best embassies for Iran. It is Ashraf. We are proud to have friends like you and Madame Rajavi. No doubt, she will lead the future of Iran. Happy New Year!” he said.

Edmond Spaho’s Speech

Edmond Spaho, Deputy Director of the Albanian Democratic Party, also praised the Iranian Resistance in a speech and noted his support for expelling Iranian regime diplomats from Albania for their involvement in terrorist activities.

“With your efforts and the struggles of the Iranian people, next year, God willing, we’ll celebrate New Year in Iran. The future belongs to the people of Iran. Without a doubt, Iran will be free and produce prosperity for its people and stability in the region,” Spaho said.

“Despite the fact that my party is currently the opposition, we are unified to support you and we even support the actions of the government to expel Tehran’s diplomats who were involved in terrorist activities,” he added.

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Nasrin Sotoudeh

International Human Rights Groups and the Iranian Opposition Condemn 38-Year Sentence for Women’s Rights Lawyer

Nasrin Sotoudeh

Women’s rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh sentenced to 38 years of prison and 148 lashes, for defending the rights of women.

The Iranian human rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, received a 38-year prison sentence with 148 lashes in a ruling the Iranian opposition has condemned as “anti-human” and “misogynist”. Mrs. Sotoudeh has devoted her life to standing up for Iranian women. She was a vocal critic of the clerical regime’s forced hijab (veiling) laws and frequently spoke out against the regime’s use of the death penalty.

These compassionate and sensible objections to the mullahs’ tyranny earnt her the attention of the regime. She was arrested after representing women who were arrested during the nationwide protests in 2018. She was tried in absentia in December 2018 and sentenced to five years imprisonment in one case and 33 in another, bringing her total sentence to 38 years in prison, her husband reported on Monday.

International Outcry

The sentence has been condemned by the Iranian opposition and prominent international human rights groups. In a statement, the Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the umbrella organization or the largest Iranian opposition group, the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), condemned the ruling.

International human rights organization Amnesty International also criticized the decision to imprison Sotoudeh. In a prepared statement, the NGO called the ruling, “an outrageous injustice.”

Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s the Middle East and North Africa Research and Advocacy Director said, “It is absolutely shocking that Nasrin Sotoudeh is facing nearly four decades in jail and 148 lashes for her peaceful human rights work, including her defense of women protesting against Iran’s degrading forced hijab (veiling) laws.” He continued to call for her immediate release and for the sentence to be “quashed without delay.”

Luther said that the ruling and Nasrin Sotoudeh’s sentence “consolidate Iran’s reputation as a cruel oppressor of women’s rights.” “Jailing a human rights defender for her peaceful activities is abhorrent but the fact that the judge in Nasrin Sotoudeh’s case used his discretion to ensure that she stays locked up for more than is required under Iranian law compounds the outrageous injustice of her sentence,” he said.

Free Nasrin

Both the MEK and Amnesty International have called on international human rights defenders to apply pressure to the Iranian regime in an attempt to secure Nasrin’s freedom. Luther singled out the European Union as one institution that should use its leverage to secure her freedom.

He said the EU “has an ongoing dialogue with Iran” and urged it to “take a strong public stand against this disgraceful conviction and urgently intervene to ensure that she is released immediately and unconditionally.”

This is among the longest and most excessive sentences the regime has handed down against a human rights activist in recent memory. The move has been interpreted as a sign that emboldened by the international community’s inactivity in the face of blatant human rights abuses, it is intensifying its crackdown on political dissent across the country.

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Disinformation by MOIS,Disinformation Campaign,Iran human rights,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI,Spiegel Fake News

Louisa Hommerich

Der Spiegel’s lost credibility in the service of Iranian religious fascism

Louisa Hommerich

Louisa Hommerich, DerSpiegel writer who traveled to Iran and studied there for two years and earned the Iranian regime’s trust to a degree that she was given permission to participate in Basij military practices. Basij forces, part of the Iranian regime’s repressive forces, responsible for cracking down on protesters in Iran.

The German magazine Der Spiegel in an article on Feb. 16, 2019, entitled “Prisoners of the Riots”, gave a very unfair report on the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) and its new compound, Ashraf 3. The group, which is the largest and most serious opposition force to the Mullahs’ ruling regime, relocated to Albania on the site of Ashraf 3 following intense persecution and violent attacks in both Iran and Iraq.

The Der Spiegel article is based on the widely discredited and false testimony of ex-members of PMOI (MEK), who today openly serve the Ministry of Information and Security (MOIS) of the Iranian regime.

For a better understanding of the issues raised in this article, we need to have a brief look at the regime’s history and origin.

The clerical regime’s leadership from Khomeini to Khamenei had decided that the survival of their regime depended on the physical annihilation of the PMOI (MEK) members and their supporters. To make this a reality the Ministry of Intelligence and Security of the mullahs decided to create an “Anti- Hypocrisy Division”(the derogatory name used by the regime to describe its main opposition) and has steadily advanced this policy for the past 30 years inside and out of Iran.

The regime adopted a two-pronged approach to eradicating the MEK. The mullahs carried out the arrests, imprisonments, torture, and execution of MEK supporters inside Iran. Simultaneously, they embarked on an extensive propaganda campaign to demonize the group through the dissemination of fake news and false allegations abroad.

False Allegations Against MEK

False allegations made against the MEK included tales of the imprisonment and torture of members who left the group, compulsory divorce of members and the disintegration of the family unit, restricted communication with the outside world, and the existence of a financial-political association with Saddam Hussein.

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

Alongside these serious and malicious accusations, the MOIS carried out assassinations of key figures in the Iranian resistance group. It killed Prof. Kazem Rajavi, Mohammad Hossein Naghdi, Zahra Rajabi. The MOIS also attempted to kidnap many other activists connected to the MEK.

Those that followed the events during the political phase (1980-1981) will remember Khomeini’s statements about the MEK. Khomeini used to say that “PMOI (MEK) members are worse than infidels,” and he even referred to MEK as the “enemies fifth column” during the destructive Iran-Iraq war.

False and negative allegations about the MEK that have been published on international media outlets like Der Spiegel, started with the inception of this regime and the roots of the allegations can be traced to the intelligence and security apparatus within the Iranian government. The MOIS uses paid agents under the guise of ex-MEK members, former political prisoners, activists, researchers, authors, and journalists to spread the falsehoods and allegations as part of a large-scale disinformation campaign.

Der Spiegel’s “bad journalism”

In the Der Spiegel article, we see the same pattern of reporting visible in other regime hit pieces.

The Der Spiegel article that was scheduled to be published on November 24, 2018, was delayed, without explanation for around three months. Its final publishing date coincided with the Warsaw conference. The hit piece was likely designed to overshadow the political victory of the resistance and help the Mullahs regime in the international arena.

A Persian translation of Gholamreza Shekari’s interview (An agent of MOIS), which was included in the final Der Spiegel article, was posted on a Ministry of Intelligence website on November 24, long before the full text was published on the Der Spiegel site, indicating that there had been extensive collaboration between the MOIS and Der Speigel’s writers and “journalists”.

Journalism is responsible for informing society. The facts they report help shape public opinion. Therefore, journalists have the moral obligation to work within a strict ethical framework. Journalism should question and criticize where appropriate. It should challenge inaccuracy wherever it finds it and stands committed to the pursuit of truth. Journalists have the obligation, at least in the fact-finding stage of investigations, to observe neutrality and remain objective until the facts are revealed. This is one of the main criteria of the ethics of journalism.

According to evidence and photographs available, the author of the Der Spiegel article, Ms. Louisa Homerich, studied in Iran for two years and spend a significant amount of time in the country carrying out research for the piece. It is not possible for a foreign citizen to spend so much time in Iran without the direct coordination and approval of the regime intelligence agencies. During her stay in Iran, she enjoyed the hospitality of the revolutionary guards and was allowed to accompany the Women Basseij forces on a military maneuver called “Women on Path of Light”. She last visited Iran in January 2018.

Her extended stay in Iran, including her university studies, and close ties to the political, military and security apparatus in the country have raised serious questions over her “impartiality” and the agenda behind her reporting on the Iranian opposition.

Louisa Hommerich studied in Iran and was trusted enough to be given the chance to participate in Basij (Notorious security forces responsible for repression of Iran Protesters) in their tactical maneuvers.

Upon becoming aware of the intentions Ms. Homerich and the upcoming Der Spiegel article, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, the umbrella organization of the MEK, in Germany tried to contact the magazine on several occasions to invite them to Ashraf 3 in Albania. The NCRI invited Der Spiegel to send reporters to speak to the residents in person and continue their fact-finding endeavor. However, the NCRI’s calls remained unanswered.

Instead of interviewing current members of the MEK, Der Spiegel drew conclusions based solely on the testimony of individuals who have actively sought to vilify the Iranian opposition at the behest of the mullahs for years. As expected, they cited false information and fake documents that contradict publicly available court documents. The end result is an article lacking a shred of truth or credibility.

In the article, a person named Mostafa Mohammadi is referred to as a witness. He is another known MOIS operative and regime insider. He has been claiming for years that his 39-year-old daughter, Somayeh Mohammadi, is being held captive by the MEK! Mostafa Mohammadi filed complaints in Canadian, Iraqi and Albanian courts seeking the “release” of his daughter from “the clutches of Rajavi’s cult”. All three courts ruled that the claims were baseless and rejected his complaint.

Another person referred to as a witness in this article is Gholamreza Shekari, who claims he was a member of PMOI/MEK for 27 years and was jailed and tortured by the group 24 years ago. He claims the group brainwashed him and that is why he remained with the organization after the torture took place! Mr. Shekari admits that he kept receiving monthly financial help from MEK for as long as he had not visited the regime’s embassy. The financial help was discontinued after his ties to the regime were revealed. He is now an active intelligence operative advancing the vilifying policies of the regime against the MEK. His interview with Der Spiegel appeared in several MOIS websites three months prior to Der Spiegel published its article!

In the end, it should be noted that the author of the article “Prisoners of the Riot”, in repeating the persistent falsehoods and lies of the Mullahs regime’s security apparatus served to further the Iranian regime’s propaganda objectives. It violated the core principles of journalism and sought to demonize a pro-democracy group fighting for the fall of the tyrannical religious fascism of the mullahs.

Reza Mohammadi

 

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1988 Massacre,Iran human rights,Kenneth BlackWell,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI

Ambassador Kenneth Blackwell

Former US Ambassador to the UN Commission on Human Rights Weighs in on Raisi Appointment

Ambassador Kenneth Blackwell

Ambassador Kenneth Blackwell (Second Left) speaking at NCRI’s news brief on the situation of human rights in Iran-Washington Press Club- December 1, 2017

Ken Blackwell, the former US ambassador to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, wrote an op-ed for conservative news site Townhall. The human rights expert weighed in on the Iranian regime’s appointment of Ebrahim Raisi as the head of the Iranian judiciary. He called Raisi,

“one of the most brutal figures of modern history of Iranian jurisprudence.”

https://twitter.com/townhallcom/status/1104970245515759616

Raisi was involved in the systematic execution of more than 30,000 members of the Iranian opposition in 1988. His ascent to the head of the judiciary illustrates the regime’s intent to further attack, maim, and kill members of the Iranian resistance and the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK). The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the umbrella coalition which includes the MEK, denounced the appointment in a statement that read; Ali Khamenei “proves once again that as the head of the crisis-stricken theocratic regime, he finds no solution other than a hard turn towards further repression.”

A Regime in Crisis

Putting their statement into context, Blackwell outlined the precarious position the regime currently finds itself in. “The crisis in question is twofold,” Blackwell writes. Widespread civil unrest and anger over the regime’s economic mismanagement and corruption weigh heavily on the mullahs. This domestic unrest coupled with the regime’s increased isolation on the international stage is causing an existential crisis. The regime’s solution to this crisis appears to be the promotion of a known human rights abuser in Raisi and an impending crackdown on the MEK and the opposition.

“In this sense, the appointment of Raisi as the new judiciary chief is just the latest in a series of efforts to reassert a national identity that is under threat of overthrow at the hands of a resentful and overwhelmingly pro-democratic opposition,” Blackwell rights.

Beyond the human rights abuses, Blackwell argues that Raisi’s appointment also exposes the folly in international policy towards the Iranian regime. Since his rise to power in 2013, many international governments have championed Iranian President Hassan Rouhani as a moderating influence on the clerical regime.

His indifference in the face of Raisi’s appointment serves to demonstrate the inaccuracy of this belief. Rouhani has expanded repressive gender separation policies, increased state-sponsored terror attacks abroad, and deployment of military personnel to quash public dissent in Iran. These are not the acts of a “moderate”.

Repression Will Not Prevail

Blackwell concluded his piece on a note of optimism. “Ultimately,” he writes, repression is “no solution”. “The Iranian people have continued to demonstrate in favor of dramatic reform and outright regime change even in the wake of thousands of protestors being arrested and dozens killed,” he said.

This commitment and resilience to democracy will ensure the MEK and the Iranian resistance will prevail. “They’re determined to succeed in overthrowing this evil and illegitimate regime,” Blackwell writes, adding, “they deserve moral and political support from the democratic nations of the world.”

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Angelo-Iranian communities demonstration in London on the occasion of IWD-2019

NCRI and Anglo-Iranian Communities Rally in London in Support of Iranian Women

Angelo-Iranian communities demonstration in London on the occasion of IWD-2019

The Angelo-Iranian communities demonstrate on the occasion of the International Women’s Day-March 9, 2019

On March 9th, hundreds of supporters of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), members of the Anglo-Iranian Communities took part in a rally outside of 10 Downing Street in London in honor of International Women’s Day. The demonstrators focused on the pivotal role of women in the ongoing anti-regime protests in Iran and called for the British government to recognize the right of the Iranian people to overthrow the theocratic regime.

A Democratic Alternative

Speakers at the demonstration condemned the deplorable treatment of women and girls under the religious dictatorship in Iran, saying that the regime’s policies have relegated women to the status of second-class citizens. They emphasized the NCRI and the MEK, under the leadership of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, offer a democratic alternative to the mullahs’ regime that promotes gender equality and equal representation in government. They pointed out that women in the NCRI and MEK are leading the Iranian Resistance in the fight to overthrow the theocratic regime.

The speakers further noted that the NCRI’s focus on gender equality and the courage of the women of Iran are the greatest assets in the fight for a free Iran. Theresa Villiers, Conservative MP for Chipping Barnet and Former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, condemned the Iranian regime’s human rights record in her speech, saying, “I support the cause of human rights and democracy in Iran. The appalling situation of women in Iran is why we need reforms and change. So I am here to support your just demands for justice, democracy, and freedom.”

Regime Oppression

In a December 2018 report, the NCRI Women’s Committee wrote that almost one thousand women were arrested in 2018 for participating in anti-regime protests. Many of these women were arrested for protesting against mandatory hijab.

More recently, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei appointed notorious Death Committee member Ebrahim Raisi as head of the regime’s Judiciary. Raisi sent thousands of MEK members to the gallows during the 1988 Massacre, during which 30,000 political prisoners were executed during a single summer. Victims of this crime against humanity included pregnant women and girls as young as 15 years old.

“I join you in condemning the appointment of Raisi and urging the UK Government to take the lead and to work with allies at the UN to ask relevant UN bodies to order an investigation and bring the regime’s officials like Raisi to justice for crimes against humanity,” said Malcolm Fowler, Senior Solicitor and former member of the Human Rights Committee of the Law Society of England and Wales, in reference to Raisi’s appointment.

IRGC, and MOIS Must be Designated as Terrorist Organizations

 

Speakers also called on the UK to designate the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) as terrorist organizations, citing their repression of the Iranian people and their involvement in terrorist plots against Iranian dissidents and MEK members in Europe, the UK, and the United States.

Dr. Jocelynne Scutt, former judge, jurist and professor at Buckingham University, spoke in solidarity with the women of Iran who face oppression at the hands of the Revolutionary Guards: “We stand here today on International Women’s Day to honour Iran’s strong, committed, courageous women. To the brave women of Iran, who have to endure Revolutionary Guards’ harassment, we support you and stand beside you in the struggle for human rights, equality and justice. We salute you, we are with you,” she said.

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Iran Freedom March,Iran Protests,Maryam Rajavi,Massoud Rajavi,MEK,MEK Network,MEK Support,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI,PMOI

OIAC Free Iran March in Washington D.C.

Maryam Rajavi Speaks at Demonstration in Washington, D.C.

OIAC Free Iran March in Washington D.C.

The Iranian-American communities in the U.S. OIAC, March in Washington D.C. in solidarity with Iran Protests, calling for regime change in Iran. The protesters also lend their support to the main democratic opposition led by Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI).

On Friday, March 8th, thousands of Iranian-Americans held a demonstration in Washington, D.C. in honor of International Women’s Day. The demonstration was organized by the Organization of Iranian American Communities (OIAC) in order to call attention to the Iranian regime’s treatment of women and to ask the United States to recognize the right of the Iranian people to overthrow the oppressive theocratic regime.

Demonstrators at the rally carried banners reading, “Recognize the Right of the Iranian People to Overthrow the Iranian Dictatorship” and “Victory is Certain, Iran Will Be Free.” Others carried signs saying, “Iranian People Want Regime Change,” held large posters featuring images of Iranian Resistance leaders Massoud and Maryam Rajavi, and waved Persian flags.

Speakers included Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), U.S. Congressman Brad Sherman (D.), and former Reagan Cabinet member Linda Chavez.

Maryam Rajavi’s Speech

Mrs. Rajavi’s speech at the event was focused on inspiring the women of the world to support Iranian women in their fight to overthrow the mullahs’ misogynistic regime.

She lauded the young women of Iran who have stepped up to take leadership roles in the MEK’s ever-expanding Resistance Units. She went on to quote MEK leader Massoud Rajavi, saying, “As the Iranian Resistance’s leader Massoud Rajavi has said, the Resistance Units are ‘the tip of the spear and guiding light for the uprisings. They are the critical component in continuing and guaranteeing advancement and victory. The historic destiny of the Iranian people in their battle for liberation will be decided with the resistance units and rebel cities.’”

Mrs. Rajavi added, “Yes, change in Iran without being organized is impossible. Change in Iran without sacrifice is impossible.”

Rajavi noted that social and economic issues have “grown to catastrophic proportions” under the mullahs’ rule. She described the rampant poverty, water shortages, inflation, unemployment, environmental destruction, and lack of access to health care.

“So long as the clerical regime is in power, none of these ills will be resolved,” she said. “The ruling mullahs will become ever more dependent on their devastating policies, namely the suppression of Iranian society, warmongering and destructive meddling in the region, money laundering, terrorism in Europe and the United States, and plundering the assets of the people of Iran.”

She added, “The velayat-e faqih regime will continue all these policies until the day of its overthrow.”

Mrs. Rajavi emphasizes that Iran is at a turning point in its history. She said, “The regime now faces one of the most difficult periods of its rule. The continued uprisings have destabilized the ruling structure. And there is no going back. Change in Iran is within reach more than any other time.”

Rajavi went on to speak about the democratic alternative for the future of Iran offered by the NCRI and the MEK. She stressed, “There is a democratic and competent alternative, the National Council of Resistance of Iran. A Resistance deeply rooted in Iran which is capable of overthrowing the regime and managing affairs during the transition so that the Iranian people can choose their true representatives through free and fair elections.”

Finally, Mrs. Rajavi emphasizes the obligation of the United States and the rest of the world to recognize the will of the Iranian people to overthrow their oppressors. “The international community is duty-bound to respect the struggle of the Iranian people to overthrow the clerical regime. This is essential for global peace and security,” she said.

Rajavi added, “It is time for the State Department to designate the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and the infamous Ministry of Intelligence as Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTO). Doing so would be a positive message to the Iranian people, and a decisive message against the clerical regime.”

Reaction of Demonstrators to Mrs. Rajavi’s Plan

According to the Washington Times’ coverage of the event, many of the demonstrators who were interviewed were hopeful that Mrs. Rajavi’s ten-point plan for Iran’s future will prove to be successful.

 

“The fact that this whole event is led by a woman is just really exciting to see,” said a student at the event who was interviewed by the Times. “Gender equality I think is something that every country strives for these days.”

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Geneva Conference on situation of human rights in Iran,Human Rights,Iran human rights,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI,Struan Stevenson

Struan Stevenson speaking at the Geneva conference on the situation of human rights in Iran

Former Scottish MEP, Struan Stevenson, Speaks at Human Rights Conference in Geneva

Struan Stevenson speaking at the Geneva conference on the situation of human rights in Iran

Struan Stevenson, the former MEP, and coordinator of the Campaign for Iran Change (CiC), speaking at the Geneva Conference on the situation of human rights in Iran-March 7, 2019

Former Scottish Member of the European Parliament (MEP), Struan Stevenson, spoke at a conference in Geneva on the human rights situation in Iran calling on the International Community and particularly the European governments to hold the mullahs accountable for their crimes in Iran. He began by describing how, “after 40 years of a brutal clerical dictatorship, today, 80 million Iranians have had enough.”

Iranians are making their voices heard at an unprecedented level. In recent months, hundreds of thousands of Iranian citizens have taken to the streets to demonstrate the regime’s brutality and violence. “Men, women, students, teachers, truck drivers, sugar-cane workers, business owners, and pensioners,” have come together under the call for regime change and in opposition to the regime’s greed, repression, and warmongering.

The mullahs’ mismanagement of Iran’s finances has left vast swathes of the population living below the poverty line and struggling to put food on the table.

“Instead of trying to mend Iran’s broken economy, the mullahs have used their equivalent of the Gestapo, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), to crack down on the demonstrators, murdering dozens and arresting over ten thousand,” Stevenson told those gathered in Geneva. Despite the very real threat to their freedom and lives, Iran’s brave protestors have not been deterred, but continue to oppose regime oppression and violence wherever it occurs. The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), the largest pro-democracy opposition group, work tirelessly to organize protests and raise international awareness to the Iranian cause.

Their effort is necessary. Stevenson said, “Iran is the most repressive country in the Middle East. It executes more people per capita than any other country in the world. Here we have a regime that tortures, rapes, sodomizes, and executes political prisoners.” It uses flogging, amputations, and hanging as methods of punishment and has executed more than 4,000 people under the Rouhani administration.

One of the Worst Atrocities of the Twentieth Century

In 1988, the Iranian regime committed one of the worst human rights abuses of the twentieth century. In one summer, the regime executed more than 30,000 political prisoners, many of whom were members of the MEK.

Although Amnesty International recently released a landmark report on the atrocity and have petitioned the UN to investigate, the crimes went largely unrecognized by the international community and no formal international investigation took place.

“The perpetrators of that massacre are still in positions of power within the regime today,” Stevenson exclaimed. “Many have even boasted about their roles.” One of these has been Ebrahim Raisi, President Hassan Rouhani’s head of the Iranian judiciary.

Death Committee Member Appointed as Regime Judiciary Chief

The leader of Iran opposition, President-elect Maryam Rajavi, has frequently criticized the move. In a recent Tweet, she wrote, “the Iranian regime has appointed Ebrahim Raisi, one of the most brutal agents of the 1988 massacre.” She continued, “in doing so, it has made a mockery of justice and trampled upon all legal and judicial standards.”

In Geneva, Stevenson continued, “despite this appalling record of human rights abuse and crimes against humanity, we still have EU governments that prefer to overlook these issues and seek to continue to sign trade deals as an act of craven appeasement of the vile Iranian regime.”

Many European heads of state have expressed a reluctance to follow the US’s lead in adopting strict economic sanctions against the regime. In what amounts to a gesture of placing profits ahead of human rights, France, Germany, and the UK are actively exploring ways to bypass US sanctions and continue trading with Iran.

Stevenson concluded his address by saying, “appeasing and kowtowing to this brutal dictatorship is a historic mistake and a betrayal of the Iranian people. The mullahs must be held to account for their crimes. They cannot benefit from impunity.” He finished with a call to the UN. “The focus of the civilized world today is on the United Nations. Please heed the cries of the oppressed millions in Iran.”

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Maryam Rajavi, leader of Iran opposition

On International Women’s Day, Maryam Rajavi Urges Iranian Women to “Struggle for Not Only What Is Possible, But What Must Be”

Maryam Rajavi, leader of Iran opposition

Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), during a video message on the occasion of the International Women’s Day- March 8, 2019

On March 8th, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), gave a speech in honor of International Women’s Day.

 

In her speech, Mrs. Rajavi expressed her admiration and support for the brave women inside Iran and across the world who have fought against oppression and tyranny to achieve equality. She also saluted the women of the MEK who have endured torture at the hands of the mullahs and those who have protested against the theocratic regime currently in power in Iran.

“A Glorious Resistance Movement”

“Iranian women are proud to have struggled against forty years of despicable religious tyranny, since day one until now,” said Mrs. Rajavi. “They have produced a glorious resistance movement.”

Mrs. Rajavi pointed out the role that women have played in the people’s anti-regime protests that have been taking place in Iran for over a year. “In the midst of fear and silence, it is women who chant, ‘Death to Khamenei!’ in the face of the regime’s agents. They lead workers’ protests and become the voice of teachers and retirees. They inspire youth to stand up against the regime’s agents,” Rajavi stated.

She also saluted the courage of those who have been imprisoned for fighting for the cause of freedom and applauded the many women who have taken on leadership roles in the MEK’s Resistance Units, saying, “They persevere in prisons with extraordinary courage, alongside their sisters. And, in the ranks of freedom fighters, they have established Units of Resistance.”

“The Arch Nemesis of Women”

Mrs. Rajavi then discussed some of the recent developments in Iran. She mentioned Khamenei’s recent appointment of a member of the infamous Death Committee of Tehran to the position of Judiciary Chief. Khamenei’s pick for the head of the Ministry of Justice was one of the primary perpetrators of the 1988 Massacre of 30,000 political prisoners, most of whom were MEK members. Many of those who were executed were women.

She also discussed high unemployment rates among Iranian women and the regime’s failure to address the issue. She spoke about child marriages, which have created epidemic rates of homelessness, drug addiction, prostitution, and poverty amongst the women of Iran.

She noted the misogynistic policy of policing women’s clothing, saying that thousands of women were arrested, harassed, and intimidated last year for “mal-veiling.”

Mrs. Rajavi went on to say that the regime is

“the arch nemesis of women and the primary obstacle against freedom and equality. Therefore, as a first step, any struggle and movement for freedom and equality go through the overthrow of the religious tyranny.”

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Solidarity through Sisterhood

She further emphasized that the women of Iran hold the key to ending the mullahs’ rule and creating an Iran where women can be treated as equals. She said,

“The main force to defeat the ruling religious dictatorship is the Iranian women, who have borne the brunt of the injustices and have the highest degree of motivation to overthrow the regime.”

Rajavi stressed that in order to achieve this goal, Iranian women must unite as sisters. “Every woman’s talents and potentials can be realized to the highest extent only through solidarity with her sisters,” she said.

“When individual action evolves into collective action, facing barriers becomes easier. So, each one of us can advance ahead and be effective to the extent that we avoid abandoning our sisters. We need to have more women in our ranks.”

Mrs. Rajavi discussed the importance of changing women’s beliefs about themselves and their role in society in order to affect change. She said,

“We have to struggle for not only what is possible, but what must be. And on this path, shifting the mindset and dislodging of women’s own beliefs is a significant and extremely imperative step.”

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She went on to say, “Rising up, searching for new values and discovering the potentials of the self and others in a collective effort and struggle supplies the roadmap for the struggle for freedom and equality. she added:

“In the struggle against gender discrimination and while vindicating the assumption of responsibility and demonstrating the capabilities of Iranian women, female Mojahedin of the Iranian Resistance have successfully overcome many challenges and traversed a long path. They have learned and proven that women as a collective, joined together, have extraordinary abilities.”

Mrs. Rajavi stressed that women were not meant to live as second-class citizens. “Women have not been born to submit to intimidation, injustice, and exploitation,” she said. “They can and they must change the world in accordance with the ideal of equality.”

“The Future Will Be Shaped in Your Hands”

Mrs.Rajavi concluded her speech with a stirring call to action and the promise of a brighter future under the leadership of the Iranian Resistance and the MEK.

“It is time to organize,” she said. “Turn your pains, suffering, tears, and yearning into a force of struggle and progress. The future will be shaped in your hands and in your units of resistance and resistance councils.”

She called on women to resist the regime’s laws on compulsory veiling, urged them to support children and women street vendors, and to “actively participate at every location where the flames of resistance and protests are burning.”

Rajavi further encouraged women to rebel against the patriarchal regime. “Stand up to the mullahs, who promote lack of trust, hopelessness, hostility and divisiveness in society in a coordinated and organized manner. They want to tell the Iranian people that nothing works, nothing matters, the situation will become worse, and so we must submit and adapt to the status quo. It is up to you, brave and aware sisters, to defeat this evil policy. It is up to you to rebel against the culture of surrender and it is up to you to cultivate solidarity, compassion, friendship and trust among our people,” she urged.

As the leader of the Iranian Resistance, Mrs. Rajavi reminded the audience that the NCRI and MEK have shown a decisive commitment to the cause of gender equality in its fight for democracy and freedom and that it is a strong advocate for the elimination of all factors that contribute to the inability of women to participate as equal citizens in a free Iran.

Equality in a Free Society

Rajavi then enumerated the rights that should be available to all women in a free society, as described in her ten-point plan for Iran’s future and the MEK’s political platform:

“Women from any ethnicity, religion or social class, regardless of their age or place of residence, must enjoy equal rights with men in all economic, social and political arenas.

“Women are free to choose their place of residence, their occupation, and education. They have a right to freely choose their spouse, to freely travel, to exit the country, to divorce, and to have custody over their children.

“Belief in a certain faith, religion or persuasion must not lead to humiliation of any woman or prevention of their access to employment opportunities, educational opportunities or seeking justice.

“Women should be able to enjoy protection by the law equal to men.

“Women should enjoy equal rights with men when it comes to seeking justice. Women must have freedom of choice for selecting their attire. The compulsory veiling law must be abolished; and it will be abolished.

“Women must particularly have the right to equal participation in the society’s political leadership.

“Women must enjoy equal rights with men in receiving inheritance and engaging in contracts and management of financial assets.

“When it comes to employment, women must have equal opportunities with men and they must receive equal pay and benefits for equal work.

“Polygamy must be banned and marriage below the legal age will not be permitted.

“And, women must enjoy equal rights to have and retain all fundamental human rights and freedoms.”

Staff Writer

 

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Disinformation by MOIS,Ingrid Betancourt,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,MEK Support,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI,PMOI

Ingrid Betancourt speaking at a conference in the French Parliament.

Ingrid Betancourt: Maryam Rajavi is There to Replace the Regime

Ingrid Betancourt speaking at a conference in the French Parliament.

Hon. Ingrid Betancourt, Colombian Politician, and former presidential candidate speaks at the conference “Iran’s Perspective in 2019” held  in the Colbert hall inside the French National Assemblee-February 2019

During a recent conference in the French Parliament, Ingrid Betancourt, a Colombian-French politician and supporter of the Iranian opposition movement, addressed French MPs on the threat the regime poses.

Asking the Right Questions

Betancourt began by calling on French politicians to ensure they will be on the right side of history and give voice to the downtrodden and repressed Iranian population. She said, “be the voice of the Iranian people, the voice that asks the right questions about the attacks, the executions, the imprisonment.”

Ms. Betancourt reminded that the Iranian regime has run roughshod over the basic human rights of the Iranian people. Pro-democracy activists in Iran, gender equality activists, trade unionists, ethnic minorities, Christians, and women, amongst others, are frequently repressed, arrested, and executed without fair trial and due process.

The Iranian people have endured four decades of the clerical regime’s blatant and violent human rights abuses. Nobody has been on the receiving end of these abuses more than the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), the largest and most active opposition group, Ms. Betancourt emphasized.

A Thorn in the Regime’s Side

Ms. Betancourt, the former candidate for Colombia’s presidential campaign, outlined that the MEK has been a thorn in the side of the clerical regime since day one. Resistance units operate across Iran’s cities, organizing protests and opposing the mullahs’ violent tyranny wherever it occurs.

In response, the mullahs have launched a series of bloody crackdowns on the opposition group. In the summer of 1988, the Iranian regime rounded up and executed more than 30,000 MEK members in what amounted to one of the largest crimes against humanity of the twentieth century.

Most recently, the regime launched a state-sponsored terror campaign against the MEK. It plotted a series of violent attacks on MEK members living in Albania. Then it plotted to bomb the group’s annual Grand Gathering event in France. Shortly afterward, two regime agents were arrested in the United States for carrying out reconnaissance activities against MEK members in the US ahead of a planned terror attack.

Speaking about the attacks, Ms. Betancourt asked, “why”, “what is the purpose of removing Ms. Rajavi and removing the Iranian Resistance Council?” The “answer is simple,” she explained. “The mullahs want to convince the world that there is only one viable interlocutor in Iran.”

Weaponizing Word

Ms. Betancourt pointed out that the regime has not limited its fight against the MEK to physical attacks. It uses international media outlets to spout lies and disinformation against the MEK and the Iranian opposition and turn public opinion against pro-democracy groups.

One of the most recent regime-originated hit-pieces appeared in Germany’s Der Spiegel magazine. The article spewed a series of falsehoods and lies, all of which have been extensively disproved in international courts. The piece drew criticism from politicians across the globe. Alejo Vidal-Quadras, the former vice-President of the European Parliament, called the piece, “a laundry list of baseless accusations.”

Why Devote Time and Resources?

The regime frequently insists that the MEK is a small and unpopular organization and that it has limited support among the wider Iranian population. But if that were the case, why would the regime devote such resources to attacking the group both at home and abroad?

The 2018 terror attacks demonstrated that the regime was willing to risk bilateral relations with European nations in order to kill and maim MEK members. Why would the regime go to such lengths over an insignificant organization?

The reality is that the MEK poses a significant existential risk to the regime. Its ranks swell by the day. The MEK-organised protest movement is expanding, and each time the group and its supporters take to the streets, the calls for regime change get louder.

There have been signs that the regime is growing uneasy. Privately, many of the regime’s leadership have made comments expressing concern, and the Supreme Leader himself blamed the group for the nationwide protests that took place across Iran in early 2018.

The MEK represent a democratic alternative to regime rule. The Iranian people know this, and now, at last, international governments are beginning to take note. Betancourt concluded her speech in the French Parliament by urging French MPs to “ask until when will we continue to believe that our only legitimate interlocutor is the tyrannical regime ruling Iran.”

Maryam Rajavi (the president-elect of the MEK) is there to replace them,” she concluded.

Staff Writer

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Arresting women in Iran for "malveiling"

Defiant Woman Arrested for “Improper” Hijab and then Beaten in Prison

Arresting women in Iran for "malveiling"

Archive photo- The Iranian regime security forces (IRGC) arresting a young woman for “improper” veiling

On Tuesday, February 26th, a young woman was brutally beaten in an Iranian prison and tied to the rails in the hallway of the prison for several hours as reported by Irannewswire.org and a number of other outlets.

Arrested for Not Observing Hijab

The 25-year-old woman, known only as “Zahra,” was stopped and arrested on a street in central Khoy in West Azerbaijan Province on Sunday, February 24th for a violation of the mandatory hijab.  She was then taken in front of a judge, who transferred her to prison for “arguing” with him. It is not clear what the argument entailed.

Beaten in Prison

On Tuesday, February 26th, Zahra was helping another woman at the prison with her child at around 10 PM. A prison guard verbally abused her for “not observing the lights out” and claimed that she was being too loud.

Zahra argued with the guard, and then more guards arrived and brutally beat the young woman, despite the lack of physical threat posed by her. According to reports, the beating ripped Zahra’s clothes and dislodged her prosthetic leg.

Tied to Hallway Rail

After the violent beating, guards dragged Zahra to the prison hallway and tied her to the rails there. She was left in the hallway for five hours until other prisoners begged guards to release her and allow her to return to her cell to sleep.

Morality Police

Iranian women are often subjected to violence at the hands of the regime and its agents. Women found in violation of the mandatory hijab may be arrested or beaten in the street by the so called morality police. Last year a young woman was beaten in the street and dragged on the ground by morality police after she was accused of improper veiling.

A bystander took a video of the incident, which shows the woman’s hair barely visible underneath her scarf. After the severe beating, her friend shouts that she has a heart condition and threatens to file a complaint against the female morality officer who carried out the attack. The officer responds, “You can’t do anything.”

An official of the theocratic regime claimed in January that allowing Iranian women to choose their clothing would lead to the end of the regime.

Jafar Dolatabadi, Tehran’s Chief Prosecutor said, “The enemy is trying to turn chastity and the hijab into a choice.”
He continued, “Therefore they have instigated some people to take off their hijab, trying to make their plans operational, but they were met with the decisive approach of the judiciary and the police.”

The regime has refused to take action to make Iran a safe place for women. The regime parliament refuses to raise the marriage age or pass a law criminalizing domestic violence, claiming that both laws would destroy families.

The MEK and the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) believe that the women of Iran deserve better. Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, has a ten-point plan for the democratic future of Iran that includes gender equality and separation of religion and state. The women of Iran have been denied their voices for forty years. The time has come for women to take back their freedom. The MEK is proud to be part of that effort.

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