Reported by PMOI/MEK
Brussels, Oct. 4, 2018 - On Thursday, a conference held in Brussels, Belgium, discussed the growing terrorist threat of the Iranian regime and how the international community must respond. Titled “Iran’s New Wave of Terrorism: EU and US Responses,” the event featured speeches by politicians, jurists, and dignitaries from Europe, U.S. and the Iranian opposition.
Conference in Brussels on the threats posed by Iran regime
In his opening remarks, Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras, former Vice President of the European Parliament , who moderated the panel of speakers, recounted the uptick of the Iranian regime’s terrorist activities against the Iranian opposition, especially against the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).
Vidal Quadras also raised attention to recent decisions by European authorities that confirmed that the Iranian regime was directly involved in the terrorist attempts on their soil.
“There has been no official statement by the Belgian government or the European foreign policy chief on the issue of the Iranian regime’s terrorist activities on European soil,” Vidal Quadras said. “The question is: Why? Don’t they know what’s happening? Can Europe afford to tolerate the Iranian regime’s terrorism for the sake of the nuclear deal or trade with Iran?”
Other participants in the conference discussed the terrorist threat in details and made policy recommendations for the international community.
Iranian opposition President Maryam Rajavi
The Brussels conference featured a video message delivered by Iranian opposition President Maryam Rajavi explaining the importance of the international community adopting a firm policy to confront Tehran’s support for terrorism.
“By using terrorism, the regime wants to compel the world to silence and surrender. The best response to such a regime is firmness. This is a responsible policy for global peace and security. The mullahs are highly motivated for terrorism. By resorting to terrorism, they seek to blackmail the international community,” Mrs. Rajavi said.
Asdollah Assadi, one of the Iranian regime’s senior diplomats, was arrested by German authorities for his involvement in the foiled bomb plot aiming to target a June rally held by the Iranian opposition on the outskirts of Paris. A German court has agreed with Brussels’ request for his extradition after Belgian authorities arrested an Iranian-Belgian couple who received explosives intended for the plot from Assadi.
The regime’s diplomats are systematically engaged in terrorism and espionage. In fact, terrorism is a key instrument for advancing their foreign policy.— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) October 4, 2018
“The Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) and the Quds Force are tasked with implementing the terrorist schemes. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for two crucial duties, providing the logistics and covering up the terrorist operations,” she explained.
“This is a mistake which costs not only the security of Iranian people but the security of Europe,” Mrs. Rajavi emphasized.
Former Italian foreign minister Giulio Terzi
Former Italian foreign minister Giulio Terzi criticized European states’ policy of remaining silent in face of the terrorist activities of the Iranian regime. “This policy, this absurdity by European institutions of trying to keep things hidden, undercover, or trying to sell a completely wrong narrative concerning Iran is the worst terrible mistake that governments, leaders can make when confronted with this episode,” he said.
Meanwhile, Terzi also acknowledged that in recent weeks, positive actions have been taken by some European authorities, including the decision by a German court to surrender Assadi, the Iranian diplomat involved in the terrorist plot against the annual Iranian opposition rally, to Belgium where he will be tried along with two other terror suspects. Terzi also commended French authorities for bringing attention to the involvement of the Iranian regime’s institutions in terror operations on their soil.
“What is coming out publicly is how the Iranians have developed a network over the past 10-15 years,” Terzi warned. “There is a network of self-presenting associations and political and cultural groups and people who claim to be active in Europe, but in reality they are directly connected with Tehran in organizing events and raising funds and promoting the most radical groups in Europe. That is something that must be underlined in the media and by the governments.”
Terzi reminded the audience that these organizations are funded by a government that clearly wants to destabilize European countries, and recommended that there must be a more effective and determined position by the EU both in terms of interpretation and messages they send to the international community.
“There must be a unity between EU and U.S. Iran-supported terrorism is so heavy that we must fight it together. Iran represents a much bigger threat as a terrorist state than the Islamic State represented,” Terzi warned.
Lord Alex Carlile of Berriew, Member of British House of Lords
“State-sponsored terrorism is ugly and must be prevented,” said Lord Alex Carlile of Berriew, Member of British House of Lords. Lord Carlile also noted that state-sponsored terrorism is not a sign of power, but shows a sense of weakness in the government that causes it.
“Civilized states and international organizations have a duty to use all legitimate and proportionate means to fight state-sponsored terrorism,” Carlile said.
Carlile warned that the Iranian government is using everything it possibly can to undermine Mrs. Rajavi and the NCRI and PMOI, including using the guise of journalists, television channels, lobbying politicians to cause confusion in western states.
On the issue of the Iranian regime’s foreign terrorism, Carlile stressed that it’s very important for the European and international institutions to work together to break groups of organized criminals and terrorists.
“It is a matter of real regret that Ms. Mogherini has not spoken out against Iran’s state-sponsored attempts at terrorism in Europe,” Carlile said. “Media and politicians should expose the state of human rights in Iran. Iran has the worst record of executions proportionate to its population in the world. A country that performs executions on an industrial scale should not be one we should be dealing with.”
Former U.S. Senator Robert Torricelli
“What happened on June 30th was part of a pattern, not an isolated event,” said former U.S. Senator Robert Torricelli, referring to the Iranian regime’s terror plot against the Iranian opposition rally. Torricelli then brought attention to the escalation of the Iranian regime’s terrorist attempts against the Iranian opposition across the world.
“This is what happens when despotic regimes are under enormous political pressure at home and feel threated by their own people,” Torricelli said, explaining that the regime’s lashing out against the Iranian opposition stems from its inability to prevent the expansion and continuation of nationwide protests that began in December.
“We must recognize this is not some rogue action. This is not a case where we can give the benefit of the doubt, look away or hope for the best,” Torricelli said, warning against ignoring Tehran’s causing insecurity and instability in European countries.
“What are the costs of doing nothing? The government of Iran is watching. Silence invites more attacks. A policy of appeasement assures more terrorism,” Torricelli warned. “Every despot and dictator in the world who wants to hold power over their own people is also watching.”
Western states must impose sanctions against the Iranian regime, Torricelli recommended. “The people of Iran are risking their lives to end this tyranny. They’re not asking you to fight, to shed blood. Just forgo some of your contracts. Buy oil elsewhere,” Torricelli said.
Mohammad Mohaddessin, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the NCRI
“The regime is after delivering a blow to the Iranian opposition,” said Mohammad Mohaddessin, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI). Mohaddessin observed that the decisions to carry out terrorist actions against the Iranian opposition were made at the highest levels of authority within the Iranian regime. Ali Khamenei, the regime’s supreme leader, and Hassan Rouhani, the regime’s president, were directly involved in the process.
“The reason for the increase in terrorist activities is the uprising of the Iranian people. The regime has found its survival in increasing its terrorism against the opposition,” Mohaddessin said, adding that the despite the regime’s repressive measures, the PMOI/MEK has been able to continue the protests in Iran.
“It is no longer possible to pretend that Zarif and Rouhani, who were behind this bombing plot, are different, that they were not aware of this plot. There’s no doubt that the MOIS was involved in a terrorist operation in the heart of Europe,” Mohaddessin said. “This should not be tolerated. This clerical regime is exploiting the nuclear agreement to hold hostage European policy over vital and fundamental issues.”
Mohaddessin made the following recommendations for European states:
- All intelligence officers of the regime must be expelled
- EU and member states must freeze all bank accounts of MOIS and its agents
- Any institution or company that deals with the MOIS or its agents should be black-listed
“Dealing with a regime that is on the verge of collapse is not beneficial to anyone. The overthrow of this regime and the establishment of democracy in Iran is within reach more than ever,” Mohaddessin said.
Eric David, renowned jurist and law professor
Eric David, a renowned jurist, and law professor, spoke to the significance of the recent verdict of a German court to deliver Assadollah Assadi to Belgian authorities, which contrary to extradition, which is agreed between executive branches, was the result of a judicial process.
“For the first time, state-terrorism is at stake on the judicial level. The Iranian government could be described in future decisions as a terrorist government,” David said. “This is very new from a legal point of view. This surrender is a real victory on the one hand of Belgian security authorities of foiling a state-sponsored terrorist attack as well as a victory of the rule of law.”
Claude Monequet, CEO of the European strategic intelligence and security center
“For the first time in years, we have clear evidence of the Iranian regime’s involvement in global terrorism,” said Claude Monequet, CEO of the European strategic intelligence and security center, who has a long history of investigating and dealing with the Iranian regime’s foreign terrorist forays.
Monquet told the audience that in the past, European countries tried to deal with the Iranian regime’s terrorist threats by giving it incentives. “We gave the Iranians everything they wanted. There were no terrorist attacks for a few years,” he said, adding that attack restarted after a few years.
“My deep conviction is that terrorism is not an accident in the government of Iran. It’s a method,” he said. “Terrorism is one of the tools of the Iranian foreign policy.”
Monquet remarked that the terror attempt at Villepinte, where the Free Iran rally took place in June, shows that terrorism is still a routine method of the Iranian regime. “In the past, we didn’t answer, we negotiated. The Villepinte plot is something our leaders must think about,” Monquet concluded.