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07 Dec 2013

Speech of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi President-elect of National Council of Resistance of Iran

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Speech of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi President-elect of National Council of Resistance of Iran

Paris – 7 December 2013

Dear Compatriots,

Distinguished personalities who have come here from different countries to express solidarity with the Iranian people and Resistance, I welcome you all.

At the outset, please allow me to express my condolences the passing away of Nelson Mandela, the historical leader of the anti-apartheid movement to strugglers for freedom, equality and all those opposing discrimination and suppression around the world. I would especially like to send my condolences to the people and government of South Africa and to Mandela’s comrades, including Bishop Tutu and his dear daughter, Naomi, who is here today. Today, we hear Nelson Mandela’s voice in the Iranian people’s resistance for freedom, when he proclaimed, “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. … It is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

I also extend my warmest greetings and salutations to the heroes and heroines of resistance and perseverance, the hunger strikes, who have conquered suffering, pain and hunger with their resolves and burning faith.

In these past 100 days, these selfless women and men, whether in Liberty Prison or in squares and streets in Geneva, Ottawa, Melbourne, London, Berlin, Stockholm and Washington, DC, kept ablaze the flames of resistance through their tolerance and endurance. In the past 100 days, the Iranian nation’s battle for freedom, at the height of its awareness, choice, and sacrifice, was manifested in their arduous hunger strike.

They demonstrated that no matter how intense the brutality and suppression, they would not surrender, nor leave the scene. Rather, they will utilize a new weapon against the enemy and advance the resistance, the revolution and the cause of freedom.

In such a way, the burning candles of the Iranian resistance kept ablaze the flames of the resistance of a fettered and oppressed nation and their imprisoned vanguards in the past 100 days.

I also hail prisoners in Iran, who in recent weeks have staged widespread hunger strikes throughout Iranian prisons.

To pay tribute to all hunger strikers, let us rise and applaud for one minute.

Dear Friends,

In three days, the world marks the International Human Rights Day. The Universal Declaration for Human Rights was adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 10, 1948. This Declaration, in essence, was an achievement for all mankind of all cultures, races and religions.

On the eve of the International Human Rights Day, we look at our nation Iran, where human rights are trampled upon. Our people suffer from the scars of lashes, are humiliated, stoned to death, with their hands tied, their feet chained and their lips sewed together.

In my nation, Iran, even at a time when the mullahs boast of moderation, one person is being hanged every three hours, from construction cranes before the innocent eyes of children who are to be the future generation.

Indeed, for the past three decades, the concept of human rights in Iran has been buried alive by the religious dictatorship while the world simply watches. In Iran, the violation of human of rights is the law and respect for human rights is a violation of the law.

But this is not the whole story of human rights in Iran.

For the past 35 years in that country, the people’s vanguards have been paying the price of human rights with their blood. As Prof. Kazem Rajavi said, they are writing the history of human rights in Iran with their blood.

For the past three decades, members of this resistance movement have waged an epic struggle, paying the price for defending human rights under all kinds of conditions, such as those of September 1, without any means to defend themselves, with their hands tied, with coup de grace shots to their heads, while being run over by Humvees, and during a 100-day hunger strike, with suffering bodies and dry lips.

The Iranian people and their brave children paid the price for human rights in the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988 and in the uprisings in 2009, in Kahrizak detention center and Evin Prison.

But on the 100th day of this struggle and the hunger strike by members of this resistance, I must say that human rights, in the true sense of the word and at its zenith, is alive and moving in the struggle of those human beings, who above and beyond their self-sacrifices, have arisen to wage a struggle and a resistance no matter what the cost and without any expectation of reciprocation. This is a resistance to safeguard noble human values, including human rights.

In the introduction of his book on letters by those executed during the French anti-Nazi resistance, the French poet Louis Aragon has written, “The collection of these letters are blood-soaked documents in which the reasons for the faith and hopes of the martyrs and the victims are recorded. Future historians must read them to dissect and explain the spirit of the French Resistance. All of them from 17-year-old teenagers to 50-year-old men have shown one emotion towards losing their lives. All of them have belittled death and these were the very same people whom Hitler’s operatives in France were calling terrorists.”

And I add, they were the true defenders of human rights and this is an unfinished task because human rights violations still continue to this day.

The have slit the throat of the dawn’s bird, yet, in this crimson river, her blood-soaked cry continues to flow.

So, we pledge to keep ablaze the flames of struggle and battle for reviving and restoring human rights and freedom in Iran at any cost.

Dear Friends,

At the center of everything in Iran is a disenchanted population that for the past three decades has sought the ouster of religious dictatorship and the opening of the path for free elections and a republic for the people and by the people. But to maintain their grip on power, the mullahs trample upon human rights in the most ruthless fashion.

In the past 11 months, according to Amnesty International, 600 have been executed by the ruling mullahs. About 400 have been hanged after Rouhani took office.

The rise in public executions, lashing and limb amputation;
The dual oppression and executions and an assortment of inequalities inflicted upon the followers of other religions and denominations, ethnicities and nationalities, including the Kurds and Baluchis as well as oppression, humiliation, discrimination and violence directed against women, all of which are legal in the regime;
Enchaining poets, writers and artists; and
Filtering and censoring of websites and emails and social media,

These actions are what the mullahs have been carrying out every day of the year and every hour of the day in order to maintain their rule.

Here, we must ask, why don’t you put the leaders of this regime on trial as criminals against humanity?

Why don’t you cut your relations with this regime as Canada has done?

What we are saying is that the stoning of human rights in Iran must no longer continue; we are saying that the slaughter and butchering of human rights, freedoms and the Iranian Resistance for the sake of economic trade and appeasement must stop.

Therefore, we tell the International community and Western governments in particular:

– Refer the human rights record of this regime to the UN Security Council;
– Support the Iranian people’s demand for the release of political prisoners;
– Make your economic dealings with this regime contingent upon the halt in executions in Iran.

The Iranian Resistance is honored that at the height of Khomeini’s unpatriotic war in 1988, it forced him to drink the chalice of poison of ceasefire by promoting the slogan of “Peace and Freedom.”

At the height of the mullahs’ nuclear hysteria, the resistance movement, championing the motto of a “non-nuclear Iran”, exposed the regime’s secret nuclear sites, plunging the mullahs into internal and international crises such that today it has retreated from its bomb-making program.

And now we are determined to force the theocratic regime to drink another chalice of poison.

The mullahs’ rule and velayat-e faqih must give way to popular sovereignty and popular will. Executions and torture must be abolished. Freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, freedom to wear any attire and all individual and social rights must be restored.

The time has come for ending the rule of repression. The time has come to establish a nation based on respect for human rights. And this will be so.

Dear Friends,

The signing of the nuclear agreement between the Iranian regime and the P5+1 is an important turning point in developments relating to Iran.

Although the agreement is replete with unjustifiable shortcomings, nevertheless, the ruling religious dictatorship has to take one step back from its bomb-making program out of weakness and being at an impasse.

But we must not conclude that they have abandoned their intention to manufacture the bomb. For the Supreme Leader of the regime, negotiations and agreements serve a tactical purpose and not a change in nature or abandoning the strategy to make a bomb. As such, the mullahs are poised to return to the status quo.

So, what hardships prompted a regime, which viewed its nuclear program as a piece of jewelry that cannot be traded with the West’s incentive package, to stop part of that program?

The answer, in one word, is the Supreme Leader’s fear of the uprising, a revolution and of being overthrown. The Iranian society’s tremendous dissatisfaction, the factional discord among the ruling clique, the disintegration of the nation’s economy, the increasing impact of international sanctions, the consequences of the Syrian crisis, and most importantly, the regime’s failure to destroy the organized opposition movement, brought about the current vulnerable state for the regime and forced it to retreat.

Everyone is aware of the Iranian Resistance’s role in exposing the regime’s nuclear sites. By making more than 100 revelations, the Iranian Resistance blocked the regime’s path to obtaining nuclear weapons. In reality, the Iranian Resistance acts as a factor which steers the regime’s increasing crises towards fundamental change and leads them to overthrow.

It is also a reality that endangering global peace and security through the policy of making the bomb represents only a part of this medieval regime’s conduct.

The religious dictatorship has founded its rule upon suppression, terrorism and export of fundamentalism. This calls for a decisive policy.

For this reason, we ask Western powers, at a time when the Iranian people and Resistance forced the regime into utter desperation, why did you not dismantle the regime’s nuclear weapons program completely at the negotiating table?

This ominous program is the backbone for the ruling theocracy and its terrorism and repression, as well as its meddling in Syria, Iraq and other regional countries.

The Iranian nation yearns for freedom and not a nuclear program.

The Iranian nation demands democracy, progress, prosperity, education and healthcare, not a variety of power plants, tunnels and nuclear sites that have put the entire region at risk and cost the country’s economy at least 130 billion dollars.

We particularly emphasize the need for the full implementation of the Security Council resolutions and the realization of the following objectives:
1. Compelling the mullahs to accept the Addition Protocol and unannounced inspections;
2. Dismantling all the nuclear sites and oxidizing all uranium reserves;
3. Refraining from reducing any of the international sanctions against the regime until it accepts all Security Council resolutions.

Dear Friends,

On the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, we must also ask global human rights organizations, the UN, its Security Council, the U.S. government, and the EU, about their conduct vis-à-vis the human rights of the residents of Camp Liberty.

No one doubts that the massacre and hostage taking that took place on September 1 in Camp Ashraf constituted a crime against humanity and the UN Security Council bears a responsibility to deal with it. But, the U.S. especially, due to its repeated and written commitments with respect to the safety and security of the Ashrafis, shoulders the main responsibility. Both before and after this catastrophe, we called on the U.S., the EU and UN organs on hundreds of different occasions to act. But nothing was done. This is while the crime against humanity counties through the hostage taking of seven residents at the hands of the Iraqi government. That government has even taken the bodies of the martyrs hostage and after the passing of 100 days, it has yet to deliver their bodies for burial.

What kind of rationale justifies silence in the face of such inhumane and heinous conduct by the Iraqi government?

The UN Security Council, and especially three of its permanent members, the U.S., Britain and France, have obligations in the face of this massacre and must work to free the hostages.

Why are you allowing the Iraqi government to prevent Camp Liberty from having the most basic means of protection on the orders obtained from Tehran?

Two days ago, my sister Roya Doroodi, who had been transferred to Albania from Liberty Prison for medical treatment, passed away in hospital. I pay tribute to her memory and offer my heartfelt condolences to her family and friends. She was the sixteenth PMOI member who have lost their lives as a result of medical restrictions.

Allow me here to quote Massoud Rajavi’s remarks about Ashraf and Liberty residents who has been saying for year that this mass detention and siege is a crime. Playing with patients and their medical needs is a crime. These are crimes for which the Nazis were tried and condemned in Nuremberg court. It was for these kinds of crimes that terms such as crime against humanity and war crime was introduced into political and international vocabulary.

So, we ask why is the inhumane siege on Liberty still in place. And, why are the residents deprived of the basic minimum daily necessities, including medical treatment?

On the eve of his trip to Tehran, the Iraqi Prime Minister once again talked about the fabricated and unlawful arrest warrants for 120 asylum-seekers and refugees at Liberty. What explains the silence in the face of this plan that seeks to pave the way for a brutal crime?

Have the U.S., the UN and even the EU, not provided guarantees to the Ashrafis through their highest ranking officials that they will ensure their safety and security until the last Ashrafi has been relocated outside Iraq?

So, why have all these commitments been forgotten today?

But, here, we must warn that if anything were to happen to the Ashrafis at Liberty Prison, the U.S. and the UN would be fully responsible for it.

What we ask is the following:

– Form an independent international committee to investigate the massacre and hostage-taking at Ashraf;
– Refer the dossier of this genocide and crime against humanity to the Security Council and the International Criminal Court.

– Silence by the International community, in particular the United States and the Unite Nations, is unacceptable. We also want you to provide security and protection to the residents of Liberty until final disposition of the very last resident outside Iraq according to your obligations.
– And, ensure the safety and protection of the residents of Liberty on the basis of your commitments.

Dear Friends,

I conclude my remarks with honoring a great day celebrating the student movement of Iran on December 7. Today is the 60th anniversary of the martyrdom of three heroic students who died during a protest at the University of Tehran.

In 1972, when I entered university, this day on December 7 represented the rejuvenation of struggles and protests and a day to make possible what seemed impossible. And it was indeed as such. It was a day for “unity, struggle, victory,” a day to rise up and rebel against the status quo. It was a day of uprising in defense of the ideal of freedom.

During the Shah’s dictatorship, universities were the bastion of awareness and the path to rise up and to join the ranks of the PMOI and the Fedayeen. And in the aftermath of the anti-monarchic revolution, universities became a solid base for the generation of freedom and revolution as it stood against the ruling reactionary forces. And it was at that time when Khomeini launched his anti-cultural coup d’état, shedding blood at universities and occupying them.

Universities were enchained, and thousands of students were martyred. But they did not surrender. And the lessons of resistance and perseverance against reactionary forces were passed on and solidified. And, now they are at their height.

During the 1999 uprisings of students and people in Tehran and 17 other cities in Iran, universities were once again centers of uprising. During the 2009 uprisings, universities and students once again cried for freedom. And, now, 60 years after that first day, we once more repeat the slogan of the student movement, “unity, struggle, victory.”

In the first months after the anti-monarchic revolution, the Iranian Resistance’s Leader, Massoud Rajavi, was teaching Iranian university students and the young generation lessons of struggle and freedom through his classes on “Interpreting the World” at Sharif University. He was laying the cornerstones for perseverance against reactionary forces and fundamentalism. In the course of these classes, he educated and led a generation which in the eyes of history has earned the title of the generation of devotion and faith, and the guardians of the flame of freedom. The exciting prospect of freedom and liberation that Massoud invites everyone to realize is based on awareness, responsibility and free choice, which is the subject of the commitment of every struggling and arisen young person.

Yes, this is an invitation to resistance, revolution and freedom, which rattles the foundations of the palace of suppression and reactionary forces. So, I call upon all university students and youth in Iran to expand the scope of their protests against the velayat-e faqih dictatorship, create bastions of resistance and form units of the army of liberation.

The velayat-e faqih regime is at a stage of defeat and retreat. That is why it is stepping up its suppression and executions, of course in the midst of its claims to moderation. It is time for you to shatter the spell of this suppression. It is time to rise up and become active in all spheres and in all fronts in order to defeat the tyranny of the velayat-e faqih.

Liberate all the fronts occupied by this regime and light the flames of struggle for freedom.

Hail to freedom,
Hail to the people of Iran
Hail to all of you.

Maryam Rajavi

President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran

The President-elect of the NCRI for the period to transfer sovereignty to the people of Iran

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