Mullahs accountable for genocide and terrorism
Maryam Rajavi: Owing to its popular base, the Iranian Resistance, has the power to bring about democratic change in Iran
A conference was held on Monday, January 17, 2022, featuring international dignitaries, including Guy Verhofstadt, the former Prime Minister of Belgium; Fredrick Reinfeldt, former Prime Minister of Sweden; John Bercow, former Speaker of the UK House of Commons; and Franco Faratini, former Foreign Minister of Italy who addressed the participants.
Opening the conference, Maryam Rajavi told the conference:
Prime Minister Verhofstadt,
Prime Minister Reinfeldt,
Speaker John Bercow and Minister Faratini,
I would like to extend my gratitude for your presence in the Home of the Iranian Resistance. Your stance against Iran’s ruling religious fascism at the NCRI annual gathering in 2021 is a firm demarcation with the debunked thinking of giving concessions to the mullahs’ religious dictatorship.
The outcome of Raisi’s selection
In the past year, the U.S. administration and European governments showed considerable flexibility to reach an agreement with the Iranian regime. So much so that, according to the clerical regime’s envoys, the United States was prepared to lift a large segment of the sanctions.
Even the EU representative attended Raisi’s inauguration despite being infamous as the henchman of 1988 during the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners.
The outcome, however, was nothing but the regime expanding its nuclear program over the past year on a much larger scale to obtain nuclear weapons.
In the same year, the regime picked an executioner as president. During the talks, the number of executions doubled compared to the same period last year.
The regime also accelerated incitement to war in various countries and equipped its mercenary militias with a variety of weapons, including UAVs. In turn, those proxies repeatedly fired rockets at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad or against its bases in different parts of Iraq.
These events raise an important question: why do the ruling mullahs respond to the West’s restraint by inciting wars? Why have they expedited their efforts to acquire a nuclear bomb? What provokes their belligerence?
Why does Khamenei pursue policies that ostensibly seem to be to be harmful to the regime?
The answer to all these questions is that the clerical regime is in a state of being overthrown. Yes, Khamenei takes lesser risks to avoid the great danger of overthrow.
For example, during the election sham last spring, Khamenei purged the so-called moderate individuals and factions within the regime. Even though, all of them were loyal to the supreme leader, their special role being to neutralize the threat of the regime’s overthrow.
Their elimination was certainly a significant political blow, but Khamenei had concluded that a slighted split at the top would deal an irreparable blow to the regime, because it is facing the prospects of being overthrown.
The economy in shambles
Another example is the imploding state of the economy.
The regime is brazenly refusing to invest in improving the Iranian people’s livelihood, welfare, health, education, employment and housing. This situation further intensifies public discontent. Khamenei, however, prefers to reinforce his police-military machine because the regime is in the state of being overthrown.
As a result, we see that from water, bread, and utilities, to housing and wages, yes, everything fuels public discontent. The inflation rate is at least 50%. There is no money to pay for half of this year’s budget and economists believe that the deteriorating economic conditions cannot be controlled.
However, it is wrong to assume that the shattered economy is the main cause of plunging the regime in the vortex of overthrow. In fact, the current situation is the product of another fundamental factor: The Iranian people are determined to overthrow a regime that lacks any semblance of legitimacy.
Hostile relations with the people
Beyond that, there is an openly hostile relation between the ruling regime and our people.
The mullahs’ approach to society, the economy, vital resources, the environment, the youth, women, and Iran’s ethnic groups are far worse and more alien than an occupying power.
In today’s Iran, the regime treats our people with repression, bloodshed and slaughter. The people have responded with rebellion and uprising.
In the November 2019 uprising, at least 1,500 protesters were killed, and thousands were arrested on Khamenei’s order. The regime officials acknowledged that protesters had attacked 900 regime centers.
On the other hand, the regime’s approach to the Coronavirus outbreak reflects a hostile policy, which only an occupying power would pursue. Covid-19 has taken the lives of approximately half a million Iranians so far. That is one-tenth of the fatalities worldwide.
From the outset, Khamenei left the door open for the spread of the disease to use it as a means to block the path of the uprisings. He even banned the import of vaccines on the pretext that they were American and British. This enmity can be seen everywhere.
Two weeks ago, the mullahs shelled residential areas in Baluchestan villages in the southeast. They have stepped up the torture and killing of political prisoners, and implemented the policy of starving people.
Another example is the tragedy of the Revolutionary Guards’ missile attack on a Ukrainian airliner and the deaths of 176 innocent passengers. Two years on, the regime is not willing to offer any answer to the bereaved families.
At this point, I declare that the case of the downing of the Ukrainian flight PS752 should be referred to the UN Security Council, to hold accountable and punish the officials and perpetrators involved, first and foremost Ali Khamenei.
The regime being in the state of overthrow can be best seen in successive uprisings by various sectors of Iranian society. The continuation of these uprisings indicates the vast buildup of unresolved political, social, and economic problems and our society’s urgent desire for fundamental change.
The continuation of these uprisings also speaks to the regime’s inability to tackle the society’s difficulties, and, consequently, it has no solution to contain the uprisings, but through crackdown. Through obtaining nuclear weapons, the regime is seeking to find a way out of these crises.
Blackmailing the West by its nuclear program
Of course, the bomb is not for confronting the uprisings but to blackmail Western governments. It is vital for the clerical regime to elicit more concessions from the West. That is why the mullahs have given priority to obtaining nuclear weapons as opposed to other options. For this reason, they have practically accepted the collapse of the JCPOA.
On the eve of World War II, the Nazi Foreign Minister Ribbentrop was asked whether Germany wanted “the Corridor, or Danzig?” and Ribbentrop replied, “Neither, we want war.”
Now, if you ask the mullahs whether they want the lifting of sanctions or a bomb, their answer so far is both. In the absence of a firm policy, they undercut the effectiveness of sanctions and drag out the talks to buy time for the bomb.
This situation has put the world, especially Western governments, to the test.
Western governments have long paid the price of appeasing the religious fascism from the pockets of the Iranian people. They have paid the price by remaining silent vis-à-vis human rights abuses in Iran, including the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners.
They have paid the price at the expense of Middle East nations’ fate and inaction toward the regime’s warmongering in the region.
But now, beyond the interests of the people of Iran and the Middle East, the security and vital interests of Western countries and societies are at stake.
Do Western governments want the religious fascism and the central banker of terrorism to arm itself with nuclear weapons?
The Iranian people and their aspirations have been ignored for years, whereas today, the Iranian people are the most serious player who determine Iran’s future.
In 1978, despite the presence of large number of its advisers, the United States could not assess the objective conditions in Iran correctly. To the contrary, the U.S. viewed Iran as an island of stability.
Do the U.S. and Europe want to repeat the same experience this time?
We say, there is need for a correct and responsible policy, which is to exert decisiveness against the regime and stand with the Iranian people.
Why is standing with the Iranian people the only correct, reliable, and indispensable forward-looking solution? Because the Iranian people have become resilient in the struggle against the dictatorships of the Shah and the Sheikh (the mullahs), Their long suffering and sacrifice have blossomed into a historic Resistance and a democratic alternative.
The Iranian Resistance’s history and platform
The protest movement and uprisings that have beset the regime today are moving in a path opened by the Iranian resistance, which has offered 120,000 martyrs to the cause of Iran’s freedom.
Having endured torture, mass killings, massacre and deprivations, the Resistance’s members have said no to religious tyranny and have thus created the conditions for the eruption of the current uprisings.
In step with the expansion of the protest movement, our Resistance has been able to establish an organized network of Resistance Units in provinces throughout the country. Through daily activities against repression, this network sets the ground for subsequent uprisings.
The Resistance Units’ activities show the way and advance the people’s uprisings and the protest movement forward towards the regime’s overthrow.
Despite the regime’s barbaric and enduring repression, our Resistance movement has succeeded in maintaining its independence politically and financially. In recent days, Simay-e Azadi satellite television channel held its 26th telethon. The tremendous scale of contributions and unsparing affection by our compatriots and supporters of this movement in different cities in Iran and across the world demonstrated the Resistance’s popular support.
With its deep roots and substantial support in society, the Iranian Resistance relies on the movement of rebellious and combatant youths in most of the provinces, to prepare for a moment that would bring the regime’s overthrow.
All indications are moving towards this moment and the regime cannot escape it. In addition to the selflessness of its women and men, and the organization and cohesion of its ranks, the Iranian Resistance represents a free, prosperous, and democratic future for Iran.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran is the democratic alternative to the clerical regime. It seeks a republic based on the separation of religion and state, gender equality, and the autonomy of the oppressed ethnic groups.
Indeed, it seeks a non-nuclear Iran that lives in peace and coexistence with the rest of the world.
Today, many have realized that the fight against extremism under the banner of Islam, more than anything else, requires the Muslims themselves to play their role.
As a result, the existence of an alternative is of crucial importance. But such an alternative is not just a theoretical solution.
Rather, it must rely on a movement that has risen up against the fountainhead of fundamentalism, paid the price of its struggle, and enjoys the capacity to bring about change in society.
With these attributes, especially enjoying sufficient popular support, and the competence to bring about democratic change in Iran, the Iranian Resistance has been able to defeat fundamentalism inside Iran, intellectually and ideologically, and expose it on the regional level.
Obligations of the international community
Before concluding my speech, let me emphasize the most important aspects of a correct policy that the international community must pursue vis-à-vis the clerical regime.
First, the regime’s nuclear projects are entirely against the national interests of the Iranian people. Negotiating with a regime that does not adhere to any rule or law only gives it time.
The international community must reinstate the six UN Security Council resolutions on the Iranian regime’s nuclear projects.
It should bring the regime’s uranium enrichment to complete halt and shut down the regime’s nuclear sites. Unconditional inspections are indispensable to preventing the regime’s access to an atomic bomb.
Second, the brutal and systematic violation of human rights in Iran must be placed on the agenda of the UN Security Council.
The regime’s leaders must be brought to justice for four decades of crimes against humanity and genocide, especially the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988, and the killing of at least 1,500 protesters in 2019.
I urge all governments and parliaments, especially in Europe, to recognize the 1988 massacre as a crime against humanity and genocide.
Third, the international community must recognize the Iranian people’s struggle to overthrow the regime and establish democracy and national sovereignty in their country. This is the Iranian people’s inalienable right.
We are approaching the anniversary of January 20, 1979, when the last group of political prisoners under the Shah’s dictatorship were released. They included Massoud Rajavi, the Leader of the Iranian Resistance, who founded and advanced a movement from the onset of Khomeini seizing power in Iran. This movement has stood up against the ogre of religious tyranny for more than 40 years. It has put forth a resistance movement that has caused the expansion of the protests and uprisings and boosted the people’s morale despite brutal repression.
We are confident of the resistance’s victory to liberate the Iranian people. This development will advance freedom, democracy, and peace throughout the world.
Thank you all very much.