Maryam Rajavi: The policies of Europe and France must stand with the people of Iran and their legitimate demands for freedom
Speech at the French National Assembly, conference on “Iran: Suppression, Belligerence, Need for a Serious Approach"
Members of the National Assembly,
I would like to thank you for your invaluable efforts against the mullahs’ religious fascism in Iran and in support of the Iranian people and Resistance. These efforts will never be forgotten.
The people of Iran have been struggling for more than 40 years against a regime which is the world’s record holder of executions per capita. Since 2013, when Hassan Rouhani became president, some 4,000 people have been executed. And 120,000 political executions have been carried out under the mullahs’ regime since 1981, including the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in the summer of 1988.
This book contains part of the names of the massacred PMOI members. It has been recently published by the Call-for-Justice movement. An exhibition in this regard is currently on display near the National Assembly. This is the worst state-sponsored massacre since the Second World War.
Some of the key perpetrators of this massacre are presently holding positions such as the Head of the Judiciary and the Minister of Justice in Rouhani’s government.
Can you imagine? What kind of justice this is?
This regime has institutionalized discrimination against women in its laws. The highest number of executions of women in the world and their most vicious tortures have been carried out by this regime. Presently, a large number of women are incarcerated in Iran for their peaceful activities or their faith.
Unfortunately, the world is silent vis-à-vis the regime’s crimes inside Iran.
Outside Iran, the clerical regime is the main cause of instability and wars in the Middle East.
Over the past years, the world has heard a lot about the crimes of ISIS, or Daesh. Their crimes are similar to those committed by the clerical regime in Iran and in the region in the past four decades. They have the same anti-human ideology: dictatorship and savagery under the banner of religion, terrorism and expansionism, and misogyny. When this ideology dominates a big country like Iran, it becomes a hundred times more dangerous than Daesh, which emerged as a result of the clerical regime's crimes in Iraq and Syria coupled with international silence.
If inaction vis-à-vis the regime's crimes in Iran and abroad persists, the clerics and their actions will duplicate new groups like Daesh. The regime is quite concerned over the latest setback to Daesh.
The regime’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and their militias slaughter people in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen.
The regime uses its missile program to intimidate its neighbors. To advance its policy, the mullahs take hostages. They use their embassies and diplomats to carry out terrorist and bombing plots in the U.S. and Europe, including France.
This medieval regime belongs to the past. Terrorism and warmongering are the strategic means of its survival. For this reason, they undermined European efforts, including those by the French President to reduce tensions. They continued attacking tankers in international waters and oil installations in neighboring countries.
Why did the regime step up its terrorism and domestic suppression, and refuse the initiatives put forth by France? Because it cannot moderate itself, because the president carries out the whims of the Supreme Leader, because the regime’s leaders want to ensure their own survival instead of caring for the interests of the people, and, finally, because the regime lacks the minimum stability.
They are playing a duplicitous game by using these initiatives to buy time and continue their aggressions in the region and expand their ballistic missile program. All the while, in their domestic propaganda, they insult France and Europe.
This is what we have experienced in the past 40 years. If this regime had the slightest capacity for reform, we would have not paid such a heavy price in this long and arduous struggle against it.
The Mojahedin quickly learned that the only means for the survival of this theocratic regime are domestic suppression, foreign wars and crises-making.
The regime understands only the language of firmness. The ruling mullahs consider silence, leniency and calls for negotiation as signs of weakness.
While they try to make it appear as though Europe needs mediation, they are the ones in need of it. They have been emboldened because of inaction towards their regime’s outlaw behavior and belligerence.
The recent developments can be summarized in three points:
• The Iranian regime is never going to change its behavior because it is too weak and isolated; any change in behavior would lead to regime change.
• The regime cannot abandon warmongering or its nuclear and missile projects in return for economic and political concessions. This is why the regime refused the chance to do so despite being offered the best possible opportunity.
• Absent a firm policy, the regime gets further emboldened and tensions and crises aggravate.
So, what is the solution? The solution is to support the people of Iran who call for the regime’s overthrow.
Today, the people of Iran are protesting and holding strikes in factories, in the streets, in Isfahan, Lordegan, Arak and other cities, but they are suppressed. In their view, the only solution to their misery is the overthrow of the regime.
In their protests, they have time and again addressed the regime’s leaders, telling them to let go of Syria, but the mullahs keep spending the lion’s share of the nation’s revenues on war and terrorism in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.
The country’s economy is paralyzed. Economic growth rate has shrunk by 9.5 percent, and the inflation rate is between 40 and 50 percent. In a nutshell, the mullahs’ regime is engulfed in one of the most critical periods of its rule.
The religious dictatorship ruling Iran does not represent the Iranian people nor their rich history and culture.
As the leading country in Europe, France must take the initiative to open the path to democracy in Iran, and to support human rights, the Iranian people and the Resistance. This is the only way we can restore peace in the Middle East and bring about stability and democracy.
There is a democratic alternative capable of establishing a democratic and pluralist republic based on the separation of religion and state, gender equality, autonomy of ethnic groups, and a non-nuclear Iran.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran is capable of replacing this regime and peacefully transferring power to elected representatives of the people of Iran.
Our people, resistance and resistance units are prepared to achieve this, and we hope that Europe and France stand with the Iranian people and their legitimate demands and aspirations.
Thank you very much.