The Free Iran World Summit 2023: Onwards to a Democratic Republic
Maryam Rajavi: A Pivotal Moment for the Iranian Revolution
The Free Iran World Summit, onwards to a Democratic Iran, was opened Saturday, July 1, at the headquarters of the National Council of Resistance of Iran in Auvers-sur-Oise, north of Paris.
Over 500 legislators, former presidents, prime ministers, ministers, and government officials from the US, Europe, and the Middle East attended the summit, and some addressed the event.
Former US Vice-President Mike Pence, Stephen Harper, former Prime Minister of Canada, Guy Verhofstadt, former Prime Minister of Belgium, Dr. Prof. Rita Sussmuth, former Speaker of the Federal Parliament of Germany), the Rt. Hon. John Bercow, former Speaker of the UK House of Commons, Ambassador John Bolton and General James Jones, former US presidential advisors, Bernard Kouchner, Michelle Alliot Marie, and Hubert Védrine, former Foreign Ministers of France, Senator Giulio Terzi, former Foreign Minister of Italy, Mr. John Baird, former Foreign Minister of Canada, Dr. Liam Fox, former UK Minister of Defense, General Wesley Clark, Supreme Allied Commander Europe of NATO, Senator Joseph Lieberman, Congressman Lance Gooden from Texas, and Congressman Raul Ruiz from California, were among the attendees. Former British Prime Minister Liz Truss and Mr. Mike Pompeo, former US Secretary of State until 2021, participated in and addressed the summit online.
At the beginning of the Free Iran World Summit 2023, Maryam Rajavi said in an online connection with the Iranians’ grand rally in Vauban Square in Paris:
Men and women, who have come from around the world to participate in this rally,
Today, you are witnesses to the victory of justice for the Iranian Resistance and, at the same time, herald the decisive defeat of religious fascism in Iran and the victory of freedom in Iran, a FREE IRAN!
I am speaking to you from the former home of the Iranian Resistance, where Massoud [Rajavi] arrived amidst the intense heat of the summer in 1981. My salutes to all of you!
To the disenchanted people in the towns and villages of Iran who are listening to my voice,
Our country, movement, and Revolution have reached a pivotal moment. A seldom-seen opportunity in the history of nations is before us: either we allow the religious tyranny and the mullahs’ rule to persist, or we instigate a revolution, topple the mullahs, and establish a democratic republic with the separation of religion and state, thus liberating our people and nation.
Fate is knocking on our door; what will be our choice?
Indeed, the answer is a revolution, but it carries a hefty price tag. Our Resistance has shouldered the most burdensome weight in Iran’s history, persevered through the longest of durations, and navigated the most intricate situations. This brings us to the critical question of our time: will the era of devastation and darkness endure? Will the suffocating shroud of the night continue to envelop our homeland?
No, never! We see with increasing clarity the invigorating dawn of liberation on the horizon. The magnificent destination of freedom is drawing ever closer. Thus, as the heralds of this new dawn, all that remains is one more leap, one more step, one more final effort. Let us rise!
The regime’s overthrow is inevitable
There are those who conjecture that the regime will inevitably retreat following the 2022 uprising. Even as it entangles itself in various harmful activities, it continues to amass wealth for the mullahs. Once again, negotiations, complacency, appeasement, and the mollification of the mullahs may resume, all at the expense of our nation and the Resistance.
But here is our response: Go ahead! Experience it for the hundredth, the thousandth time.
The Shah, bolstered by the financial support of the U.S. and Europe, had vast resources at his disposal. He was even awarded the metaphorical badge of the regional policeman. His army fought in Dhofar, and his intelligence services and SAVAK attempted to stage a coup in Iraq. Yet, in the eyes of the Iranian people, his reign had run its course.
Politically and historically, just like the Shah’s dictatorship, the religious dictatorship is teetering on the brink of collapse. Just as you couldn’t keep the Shah’s regime afloat, you cannot prop up the mullahs, not even with crutches, nor by suppressing the Iranian Resistance.
We firmly assert that regardless of whether the JCPOA is active or not, the era of religious fascism has drawn to a close, and the sun of its existence is setting on the horizon of its downfall.
Why is Khamenei terrified?
Less than a month ago, Khamenei declared at Khomeini’s tomb: “Today, we have thousands of resistance cells in mosques and missions across the nation. From these cells of resistance, we witness the emergence of young individuals as defenders of the Shrine [in Syria], as defenders of security, and as Basij militiamen.”
Indeed, why would a regime armed with the Revolutionary Guards, the Army, the Ministry of Intelligence, the Quds Force, the Basij militia, various garrisons, and covert agents need resistance cells? Could it be due to the potential for unforeseen uprisings and the progression of a democratic alternative?
Why does he implore governments worldwide to exert pressure on the Iranian Resistance?
Because he senses the impending footsteps of uprisings and the forces of the Democratic Revolution; because the determination of our people to establish a just society surpasses their fear of repression; new uprisings follow each wave of the crackdown, each stronger and more dynamic than the last.
Because brave women are leading this uprising, holding high the torch passed down from generations of resistant fighters who endured torture and execution in their struggle against Khomeini’s oppressive regime.
This generation of hundreds of thousands of resistance fighters represents an immeasurable force—a splendid generation symbolized by Massoud [Rajavi], whose radiant stars will forever light up the Iranian sky.
Indeed, an organized movement, with its Resistance Units acting as the propelling force behind the uprising, is attracting an ever-increasing number of oppressed individuals with each passing day. This movement has a dual objective: the overthrow of the oppressive regime and the realization of a revolution founded on the principles of freedom, democracy, and equality.
Did Khamenei and his oppressive forces hesitate in their relentless efforts to suppress the uprising? Absolutely not! Nevertheless, they have been unable to extinguish the uprisings stemming from the existing realities on the ground.
Those who lent them support sought to crush the democratic revolution in Iran for their own gains. However, they have ultimately failed.
They resorted to various schemes to cancel this rally, yet they failed. Yes, it is your combined strength that led to their defeat.
Indeed, such power resides in your resounding cry for freedom, causing tremors within the mullahs’ rule.
Why do Khamenei and Raisi demonstrate such fear over a rally taking place 5,000 kilometers away from Tehran? Why do they feel such terror and apprehension?
As for the advocates of appeasement within the U.S. State Department, who concurrently backed the tragedy in Ashraf-3, it is enough to note that the mullahs waved their turbans and lavished them with commendations.
At this point, I wish to express my profound gratitude to all the groups, parties, and individuals who, despite their varying opinions, have shown solidarity with the Iranian Resistance in recent days. A national solidarity front of Iranians, bound by the shared aspiration for a liberated Iran and a truly democratic republic, has the power to weaken religious fascism and hasten its ultimate demise.
But what is the true essence of this conflict? What does it truly represent? It signifies a struggle that lies at the core of the Iranian people’s uprising. Once again, we hear the rallying cries that sparked the French Revolution: liberty, equality (free from hereditary or religious privilege), and fraternity.
Appeasement cannot save the clerical regime from its inevitable downfall
Khamenei and his Guard Corps (IRGC) are painfully aware of the forthcoming wave of uprisings. Consequently, they call upon the USA and Europe to intervene, obstruct the transformation in Iran, suppress the leaders of the popular uprising, and limit their fundamental rights of freedom of expression, assembly, and political engagement under the pretense of security or national sovereignty. Is this truly indicative of 21st-century Europe?
I recall that on March 10, 2011, exactly one month before the April 8, 2011, assault on Ashraf-1, the European Parliament, in a resolution applauding the condemnation of the Iranian regime, stressed that “issues of sovereignty and domestic jurisdiction can no longer be used to shield states from scrutiny on their human rights records.”
However, let me share what emerges from the prevailing spirit of the times:
Appeasement towards the mullahs’ regime may lead to more bloodshed among our people and our resistance, it may lengthen the list of executions, and it may fill more prisons. Yet, it will be futile in protecting Khamenei from his inevitable downfall.
Restoring this stagnant regime to its former balance and quelling the ardor of the uprising is impossible.
Stop supporting the mullahs
I must reiterate. We neither desire nor have ever asked foreign governments to help our people and our resistance to topple the regime. Instead, we urge them to cease supporting the mullahs.
We encourage them to recognize how the American people and nations across Europe are expressing their unyielding solidarity with the Iranian uprising.
Take note of the resolution passed by the majority of elected representatives of the American people! Observe the declarations made by 3,600 parliamentarians in 61 legislative assemblies in 40 countries -including the majority of members of the parliaments in 29 countries – who reject both the fascism of the Shah and religious fascism, endorse the Ten-point Plan proposed by this Resistance, and support the Iranian people’s desire for a democratically elected republic and a non-nuclear Iran. Let us extend our heartfelt salutations to these esteemed parliamentarians!
What crime has the Iranian Resistance committed?
Indeed, what crime has this Resistance committed? Its greatest offense is its unwavering commitment to not waste a single day or hour in its efforts to overthrow this regime. It ceaselessly works towards organizing resistance and fostering uprisings.
The Iranian Resistance is formed by steadfast members who have forgone the ease of conventional family life, rebelling against a self-focused, patriarchal culture that promotes an ‘I come first’ mentality. Their lives are pledged to the revolution and the quest for freedom.
The Resistance strongly asserts that Iranian women should have the right to make their own decisions freely and contribute actively and equally to societal leadership.
Their mantra stands clear: reject obligatory religion, mandatory veiling, and imposed government.
The Resistance champions the self-determination rights and autonomy of persecuted ethnic minorities, ranging from Kurdistan to Baluchistan, and Turkmen to Arab compatriots, those who voice from across the country, “I am ready to lay down my life for Iran.”
The Resistance has taken form to eradicate rampant unemployment and poverty, afflictions burdening millions of Iranian workers. Indeed, our movement has risen to alleviate the homelessness experienced by one-third of the nation’s populace and the severe plight of the 80% living below the poverty line.
If these endeavors are considered criminal under the suppressive sharia law of the mullahs, under the regime of despotism and dependence, then yes, we confess guilt and accept our actions with honor.
Yet, we will not permit any compromise on the autonomy of the Resistance and Iran’s sovereignty for all the world’s wealth. We refuse to abandon our core beliefs, values, battles, and ideals to pursue power.
We shall not endure the slightest hint of tyranny, exploitation, or authoritarian intent, be it from the dictatorships of the Shah or the mullahs. Furthermore, we do not depend on any foreign power to liberate Iran.
Yet, amid Iran’s desolation under Khomeini’s reign, there are those who kindle the night throughout the year. They traverse from one street to the next, from one city to another, focusing their efforts on centers of oppression, plunder, and demagoguery and igniting the fires of popular outrage. This nascent hope, this echoing demand for revolution and liberty, has now come to be known as the Resistance Units.
The answer resides in revolution
Honored supporters of the Iranian Resistance,
As you disperse from here, please relay to every Iranian you meet that you have found the way. Enlighten them that the answer resides in revolution. Assure them that we can – and indeed, must – strive towards this goal.
Frequently, we are asked how we overcome the myriad hurdles and challenges we encounter. Our reply is steadfast: we possess the ability to surmount them all. Mohammad Hanifnejad, the founder of the PMOI (People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran), created this organization from virtually nothing in defiance of all odds.
In a period when the People’s Mojahedin were confronted with tremendous bloodshed, Massoud Rajavi founded the Iranian National Liberation Army. Even amidst the carnage at Ashraf-1, when our movement’s core stood on the precipice of obliteration within Camp Liberty’s slaughterhouse, Massoud Rajavi established the Resistance Units. The fruits of his labor are manifest in the persistent uprisings we observe today.
Indeed, our movement’s history is characterized by groundbreaking initiatives and transformative creations. By acknowledging Massoud Rajavi’s steadfast and creative leadership, we declare that victory and the future are ours.
They question us and our people, pondering how this bloodthirsty leviathan can be overthrown. Our response is clear: through unrelenting resistance, a struggle a hundredfold fiercer, the mobilization of Resistance Units, a revolt, and the Army of Freedom.
Yet, how do we approach this objective?
Through unending dedication and relentless struggle, never pausing, probing every possible path, kindling the fire within each human soul, cultivating emerging resistance, and awakening dormant consciences. We will resist with resolute determination, persevering in the battle until the shackles are broken, until the path unveils itself, and until the walls come tumbling down.
Yes, we can, and we must.
Long live the Iranian people!
Long live freedom!
The democratic revolution of the Iranian people will prevail!