Reported by PMOI/MEK
Albania, July 13, 2019 - The Iranian opposition coalition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) held its annual “Free Iran” conference on Saturday in Ashraf 3, home to members of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK). Ashraf 3 is located in Tirana, the capital of Albania, where PMOI/MEK members were relocated to from Iraq back in 2016.
At the beginning of this conference, former PMOI/MEK Secretary-General Fahimeh Arvani delivered the opening remarks specifically focusing on Ashraf 3 and how the Iranian Resistance movement has been able to continue its struggle thanks to its perseverance through the years.
Former PMOI/MEK Secretary-General Fahimeh Arvani - Free Iran rally in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Iranian opposition President Maryam Rajavi has led this movement and today we are witnessing the regime in Iran on the brink of overthrow. I would like to thank all the distinguished guests with us here today and those who couldn’t join us for all their support in all these years,” Ms. Arvani said.
“Resistance Units have spread across Iran and have accomplished their role in their best forms. They are directing protests and demonstrations. We are now in an extraordinary period, especially today, in Ashraf 3. This gathering with your presence has a very strong message for the Iranian people. On behalf of PMOI/MEK members I am honored to thank every single one of you and send my salutations to the Resistance Units,” the former PMOI/MEK Secretary-General concluded.
Iranian opposition President Maryam Rajavi was the keynote speaker at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
NCRI President Maryam Rajavi
“Ashraf 3 welcomes you all. Twenty months ago, this was a piece of land with nothing on it.
At the hands of the Mojahedin, however, through their enormous efforts and hard work, Ashraf 3 was built and now stands tall. But our final destination is Tehran, freed from the occupation of the mullahs,” Mrs. Rajavi said welcoming the international dignitaries at the rally
“... Ashraf 3 stands tall along this long journey, a journey that has had many new beginnings and revivals throughout. On this path, we endured ten years of blood-drenched perseverance at the besieged Camp Ashraf and another four years full of determination at a slaughter house called Camp Liberty (in Iraq).
Now, Ashraf 3 stands tall along this long journey that has had many new beginnings and revivals throughout. Another chapter in a great march towards freedom and towards a #FreeIran #Iranhttps://t.co/g4IQG7YuCE pic.twitter.com/xwNAIk91KZ— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) July 13, 2019
“On the first anniversary of the start of resistance against the mullahs, [Iranian Resistance leader] Massoud Rajavi said, ‘The triumph of our resistance will remove not only one of the greatest obstacles before contemporary revolutions but in fact, the most important cause of their deviation and disintegration, namely the violation of the sacred parameters of freedom under various pretexts and excuses. The revival of the concept of freedom will resurrect humanity as well as defeated revolutions.’
Iranian Resistance Leader, Massoud Rajavi
“He said, ‘For a nation to appreciate her own freedom, she must ultimately free herself on her own... And it is precisely for this reason that we are responsible to advance the goal of a general uprising for the freedom of our people and our country.”
Referring to the Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Maryam Rajavi recalled the Iranian resistance’ position back in 2015, exactly at the time when the deal was struck. “An agreement that overlooks the human rights of the Iranian people and fails to emphasize and acknowledge them, will only encourage further suppression and incessant executions on the part of this regime. It will also trample upon the rights of the people of Iran, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the UN Charter… because the people of Iran have been the main victims of this ominous nuclear program,” Mrs. Rajavi emphasized.
NCRI President Maryam Rajavi was the keynote speaker at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
Counting the Iranian regime’s terrorist activities and statements over the past few weeks, including the bombing of the oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates and the attack on the Japanese oil tanker while the country’s prime minister was visiting Iran, Maryam Rajavi continued, “Indeed, in view of such threats, what can we make of their ridiculous claims that the religious fascism considers nuclear weapons to be forbidden and Khamenei has issued a fatwa in this regard? What happened to those claims? Didn’t they simply make a mockery of the media and public opinion using those claims? And the hide and seek game goes on…”
Describing the reasons behind the Iranian regime’s recent war mongering, and escalations, Mrs. Rajavi added, “Clearly, the regime is fueling tensions in a bid to push back against the international community. They foment turmoil and chaos to hide their fear of being overthrown. They want firmness to be replaced with the policy of appeasement. And they want to allay fears and anxieties of their Basij forces and Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and to preserve their internal balance and equilibrium.”
Quoting a former advisor of Iranian regime President Hassan Rouhani who described the power struggle inside the mullahs’ apparatus to determine the Islamic Republic’s foreign policy, Mrs. Rajavi said there are “two schools of ‘confrontation’ or ‘engagement’,” which “are facing off against each other.”
Iranian Opposition President Maryam Rajavi was the keynote speaker at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“In a bid to consolidate power, in a speech on May 22, Khamenei ordered his audience to ‘set the stage for the creation of a young, Hezbollahi government.’”, Maryam Rajavi quoted the Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei who has the last say in everything foreign policy in Iran.
“However, the reality is that schism and instability are among the signs that the regime is in its final chapter. The clerical regime is not going to find a way out of its inevitable downfall,” she said, forecasting the fate of the theocracy ruling in Tehran.
The regime is fuelling tensions to push back against the int’l community and hide their fear of being overthrown. They want firmness to be replaced with the policy of appeasement, they want to allay fears of their forces, & to preserve their internal equilibrium. #FreeIran #Iran pic.twitter.com/dTs6pA6kTt— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) July 13, 2019
Referring to Khamenei and his role in the mullahs’ regime, Maryam Rajavi said: “Now the obscuring curtains are being pulled away, one after another one. Everyone can clearly see that the source of war and warmongering is the velayat-e faqih regime. As the Iranian Resistance said from the outset, fighting against this regime is equivalent to seeking peace because it eliminates the source of war and turmoil.”
“The spin doctors of the clerical regime used to claim that if the mullahs were to be overthrown, Iran would experience war, turmoil, and secessions. Now, everyone can see that so long as this regime remains in place, war and crises will continue and intensify in the region. Therefore, anyone who seeks freedom for Iran, anyone who wants to save Iran from destruction and chaos, anyone who wants global and regional peace and stability, must rise up to demand the overthrow of the mullahs’ regime,” the NCRI President highlighted.
Describing the major ruse created by proponents of appeasement, Maryam Rajavi said that the proponents of appeasement are going the distance “to paint the policy of firmness against the regime as being tantamount to warmongering,” while “giving the mullahs any more chances will only end up emboldening them. Their path must be blocked. Albania is an example in this regard.”
Describing the historical mission of the Iranian Resistance, the NCRI, and PMOI, Maryam Rajavi said that “After developing a deep understanding about the nature of the ruling theocracy, the Iranian Resistance has been insisting for four decades that the regime is incapable of reform and therefore it is imperative to overthrow and change it.”
Saying how the “NCRI has been underscoring the threat this regime poses to regional and global peace and tranquility and has called for imposing comprehensive sanctions on the religious fascism ruling Iran,” Maryam Rajavi listed the achievements and sacrifices of the Iranian resistance, including:
- Exposing the reactionary nature of Khomeini and the ruling mullahs in Iran
- To endure suffering and making the ultimate sacrifice in the fight against the mullahs’ IRGC and Gestapo-like intelligence services
- Forcing Khomeini to accept a ceasefire in the Iran-Iraq war
- Remaining steadfast in Ashraf and Liberty camps in Iraq
- Helping to condemn the Iranian regime 65 times by the United Nations for its human rights violations and publishing informative books and evidence
- Exposing the IRGC’s terrorism, especially the list of 32,000 mercenaries of the Quds Force in Iraq
- Exposing the regime’s secret nuclear projects and facilities in Natanz and Arak
- Awakening and alerting the world about the mullahs’ clandestine bomb-making program with over 100 accurate and documented disclosures over a quarter of a century
Mrs. Rajavi concluded that if the Iranian Resistance has failed in achieving all these tasks over the past decades, “Today, the situation would have been radically different, and the mullahs, equipped with nuclear weapons, would have created and solidified the empire and Caliphate they had long intended to establish. Yes, the Iranian people and Resistance have paid the necessary and full price. Otherwise, the groundwork for their terrorist designation would never have been created.”
Iranian opposition President Maryam Rajavi delivering her speech at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
Arguing that overthrowing the ruling theocracy in Tehran at the hands of the Iranian people and their resistance is the only solution, she said: “Those who benefit from the perpetuation of this regime used to give bogus promises of reform and moderation in the past, and today, they beat the drums of demonization and disseminate fake news against the Mojahedin and the Iranian Resistance. They want to play the role of the regime’s saviors. Over the past year alone, 11,500 completely fake and deceptive regime twitter accounts have been closed.”
Describing the current situation in Iran where there is a nation standing steadfast against this tyrannical regime determined to topple it in oppose to a regime on the verge of its demise, Mrs. Rajavi concluded her speech.
“Today, two sides are facing off against each other over the fate of Iran. On the one side is a deadlocked regime, and on the other is a nation and its Resistance fighting for freedom.
“Yes, there is an alternative that wants to reach the destination of freedom through units of rebellion, rebellious cities and the Army of Freedom. This alternative is capable of establishing a democratic and pluralist republic based on the separation of religion and state, gender equality, the autonomy of Iran’s ethnic groups, and a non-nuclear Iran.
“The National Council of Resistance of Iran has concrete plans and programs. Thanks to its organization and cohesiveness, the NCRI can replace the regime and is able to ensure a peaceful transition of power to the Iranian people’s elected representatives.
“Yes, the day is not far when Iran, the Land of Lion and Sun, will embrace freedom.”
We are determined to create a new future, a new plan devoid of tyranny, reactionary thought, duplicity, and discrimination. A new design for a free and prosperous Iran.
So, we will sing in unison as we march toward victory: we will take back Iran and we will build a new homeland.
Yes, indeed, we will take back Iran.
Following her speech, Mrs. Rajavi joined the conference audience in reciting the Iranian national anthem.
Senator Robert Torricelli
Sen. Robert Torricelli at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I’m a volunteer, a simple soldier in the international fight to end the dictatorship in Iran.
For thousands of years, when people met at street corners the said: ‘I’m a citizen of Rome.’
But today, wherever men stand tall, they will say that I was a resident of Ashraf. I never gave up, I never gave in, I’m a proud Iranian,” Sen. Torricelli said.
“What began with a single woman is a chorus around the world... To those of you that are risking your lives in Iran, I say, It is your time. To the students, if you haven’t joined the brigades of resistance, join today, join tomorrow. Take your lives in your hands,” he added.
“To the workers who hear my voice, break down your chains and rise up to your freedom and the right to feed your families,” Sen. Torricelli emphasized, touching on the restive atmosphere in Iran.
“To the Iranian community in foreign countries, the past is forgiven, the future is now, we have a common cause to restore the dignity of the Iranian people. There is only one organization that promises to overthrow the dictatorship in Iran and restore the nation and that organization is the PMOI and their leader is Maryam Rajavi,” he added.
“Gathered here today is what the regime could not buy. The respect of other nations. Democrats and Republicans, are committed to one common cause: the destruction of this regime now… In every organization, in every group of men and women but one is always the strongest, many can join later but one has joined first and the former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani is that voice among my fellow Americans.”
"There is only 1 organization that promises to overthrow the dictatorship in Iran & restore the nation and that organization is the PMOI & their leader is Maryam Rajavi" - @bobtorricelli at the #FreeIran rally at the MEK’s compound in Ashraf3#IStandWithMaryamRajavi #WeSupportMEK pic.twitter.com/tK951F4QlR— NCRI-FAC (@iran_policy) July 13, 2019
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Thank you and particularly who live here and have lived in Ashraf. When the history of this tragic part of Iran is written, you are the heroes. You will be the freedom fighters and you will be honored in Iran’s history. God bless you and thank you,” Mayor Giuliani said praising the Iranian Resistance movement as a whole.
“This organization has grown and grown, and I feel optimism in this room that I haven’t felt in previous meetings. If you wanted to build this city in New York city it would take 15 years,” he added.
“Massoud Rajavi began the resistance movement in a very brave act by not swearing allegiance to [the regime founder Ruhollah] Khomeini. Aren’t we now at a point in history where we all can stand up and say no more oppression and murder? You have to go,” Mayor Giuliani continued.
“I accuse [Khamenei] and [Iranian regime President Hassan] Rouhani and all their followers, I accuse them of murder. Not just murder but mass murder. How can we tolerate this? Four decades of mass murder and crimes against humanity. And our nation is supposed to stand for freedom and democracy?” he emphasized.
“Back in 1988, in a few months, they killed 30,000 individuals. How don’t we get angry enough to act,” Mayor Giuliani said, referring to the 1988 massacre of over 30,000 political prisoners, mostly PMOI/MEK members and supporters?
“There are three things we have to do:
1- Getting the governments of Europe to stand up and reclaim their dignity and honor.
“These are countries that gave us Greece and Rome. They gave us democracy. Democracy for my nation came out of Europe. There is no statute of limitation on murder. You can not say the murder was 30 years ago. The people who murdered 30,000 people in 1988 must be persecuted, imprisoned for life or executed.
Mayor Giuliani at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“So stand up leaders of Europe. Stand up in Germany, the UK, France, Italy. If you gave us freedom and democracy, don’t turn your back now on democracy and freedom.
“I’m proud of my government to tear up that nuclear deal. We don’t put nuclear weapons in the hands of murderers. When you put money in the hands of murderers, you are supporting murderers. When a German company makes business with Iran, they are helping to kill people in Syria, or kill us here in Albania. You are funding murderers. That makes you complicit in murder. We don’t allow people to fund murder. Wake up. When you buy oil from Iran you are funding murder. Face it and stop it,” Mayor Giuliani continued.
“2- There is an alternative to this horrible regime of terror.
“This isn’t one of those situations when we have to dispose of a regime and we know that a more horrible regime will come. That was the case in Libya. But here we don’t have that problem. We have the biggest sponsor of terrorism in the world and then we have the NCRI, led by the President-elect Maryam Rajavi.
“We know there is a group of people who are dedicated to freedom and the cause of it, and that is what they call a cult these days because they are so cynical that they can’t understand decency and honor. Maybe something is wrong with you,” he emphasized, debunking the claims raised by the Iranian regime and its chorus of apologists/lobbyists in the West.
“We have a government in exile that has written down its principles. Free elections in six months. Gender equality. System of law. Fair trial. And they oppose capital punishment. This is a good organization. And if you have built this place in three months, you can do that in six months,” he added.
Mayor Rudy Giuliani at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“This is a group we can support and a group that makes us comfortable to have regime change.
“3- You can be a witness in the biblical sense.
“You know about the continuous murders in Iran. You know about Maryam Rajavi and the PMOI, not the lies. Why are the [mullahs] killing them for decades? How stupid can someone be not to understand that?
“You can be a part of it. You can write, you can speak out. We don’t walk away when we see someone is oppressed.
“You can turn your back like the leadership in Europe, but you can go everywhere and spread the world. Stand up. My colleagues and I are attacked all the time in the U.S. but we can’t turn our back.
Tom Ridge, Louis Freeh and Bob Torricelli agree that NCRI (National Council of Resistance in Iran) is a very capable alternative to the Regime of Terror oppressing Iran for 40 years. They stand for freedom. pic.twitter.com/xaqzMkdDUS— Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) July 13, 2019
Thanking the American delegation that gathering on the stage, NCRI President Maryam Rajavi said, “You are the pioneers of the right policy towards Iran,” while thanking them.
Senator Joe Lieberman, former U.S. vice presidential candidate
Sen. Joe Lieberman at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“It is not only an honor but exciting to be here in Ashraf 3. We gathered in many meetings at this time of the year in Paris and the crowd was enormous, but there is nowhere I would rather be today than in Ashraf 3,” Sen. Lieberman said.
“Let me explain why: For years, the Iranian American community fought for the cause of the residents of Ashraf and it was embraced by more and more representative in the U.S.,” he added.
“We were hurt and heartbroken and angry when you were terrorized and murdered in Camp Liberty by the Iranian regime’s mercenaries. Iran is ready for a new dawn and day. You are ready. We are ready,” Senator Lieberman continued, going on to chant, “Hazer! Hazer!” meaning I am ready in Persian, which has become a motto of Iranian Resistance members.
“Now that you are here, the NCRI and MEK can focus its efforts on the fight inside Iran,” he said.
Sen. Lieberman went on to voice his support for U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal and designating the IRGC as a terrorist organization.
“History is on your side. Freedom and justice will always prevail. And that is what the MEK and NCRI represent. Yes, my friends, Hazer, Hazer!” he said, repeating the Farsi slogan.
.@JoeLieberman at the #FreeIran event at the MEK's compound: It's not only an honor but exciting to be here in Ashraf 3. We gathered in many meetings. In Paris & the crowd was enormous, but there's nowhere I'd rather be today than in Ashraf 3#IStandWithMaryamRajavi #WeSupportMEK pic.twitter.com/1o9ITXKhD4— NCRI-FAC (@iran_policy) July 13, 2019
“I thank you for being an example to the whole world that those who are willing to sacrifice for the cause of freedom will always prevail… Let me quote the late Senator John McCain: ‘The battle to liberate Iran is not a battle that has great significance for the people to Iran but for the great cause of freedom around the world.’
“Maryam Rajavi is a principled, visionary, selfless leader and cares for every one of you… Ashraf 3 is the best proof that this movement is a viable alternative to the ruling mullahs in Iran,” he added
“To those who advocate appeasement, it’s time to stand for the people's freedom. It’s time to bring a government to Iran that is accountable to the Iranians. A government of the people, by the people, for the people.
“Hazer, Hazer, Hazer,” Senator Lieberman said in conclusion, meaning I am ready in Persian.
MEP Michèle Alliot-Marie, former French minister of foreign affairs, defense, interior, and justice
MEP Michèle Alliot-Marie at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I thank you for representing a vision, a direction that unites all Iranians and many people in the world… Iran is behind all the crises in the Middle East. Iran destabilizes the whole region. Iran finances terrorists and supports them with weapons,” said MEP Michèle Alliot-Marie.
“When we talk about Iran we don’t talk about the Iranian people. I refer to the regime that destabilizes the region. The Iranian people aren’t like that,” she emphasized. “We should not be illusional, we have cultural and political differences, but we have values that are common and we should fight for them.”
“We are lucky enough to enjoy these values but we almost lost them at a certain point. There were friends who helped us to keep them. For these reasons we have to stand with the Iranians who want to protect their fundamental human rights,” the French MEP concluded.
Former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper
Former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I’m delighted to be here because there are few causes in this world today more important than what you are doing to bring change in Iran to empower the people to determine their government in Iran at the ballot box,” former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said.
“The need for change in Iran is greater than ever before and the need of the work of this organization for change in Iran is also greater than ever before,” he emphasized.
“The only realistic policy towards Iran is firmness and post-sanctions do what my government did in Canada: Close down the regime’s embassy in Canada,” Prime Minister Harper stressed.
“What is the argument against firmness? They say the world has no choice. Appeasement or war. This is not true. Appeasement is accepting the war that the regime is already waging against its neighbors through proxies,” he added.
“The right response is not to surrender but to stand with the Iranian people and against this regime.
“The religious fascism of the Ayatollahs in Iran means a confrontation with its own people and the world. That’s why we have to stand behind the 10-point plan of Maryam Rajavi and the Iranian resistance:
Pluralism, Capitalism, Gender equality, And a non-nuclear Iran,” Harper said, voicing his support the platform of the Iranian resistance.
“Your ten point plan is the future, future Iran and the world needs. Do not give up hope and do not relent in your efforts in any way,” Harper said.
“Today I’m joined by Canadians here who have supported my government and opposed my government but we share a common goal of your vision for a future Iran. Keep up the fight, Hazer, Hazer, Hazer,” Harper concluded.
Dr. Bernard Kouchner, former foreign minister of France
Former French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“This is a marvelous work of art here in Ashraf. You really deserve to build up a real country in Iran. It is very well done. Coming to Ashraf 3 was a real reward for the people supporting you. Now, we are facing this new step, benchmark, and era. The era of freedom in Iran” said former French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner.
“We should not mix the people of Iran with the regime in Iran… And Europe that is facing this tension. Just listen to this program. Elections based on the principle of universal suffrage. A pluralistic political system with free assembly. The abolition of the death penalty,” going on to list the ten-point plan presented by NCRI President Maryam Rajavi for the future of Iran.
“I don’t think anyone is against this policy. I agree with Mr. Giuliani. We believe the people of Iran are not supporting the [mullahs’ regime]. Mr. Giuliani was right. The mullahs are murderers. They are the origin of all terrorist attacks,” he added.
“We are ready to relieve these people from this awful religious system. We are not against religion. But we are against using religion to kill people… Religion is also the liberation of the people. Madam Maryam Rajavi, You are persistent and a fantastic model for the women of the world… We are completely with you to support such a fantastic program.”
Delegation of Albanian politicians
Former Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko
Former Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“In World War II, German Nazi required Albania to transfer its gold to the bank in Berlin and give up a list of its Jewish citizens. The Albania answer was short: Gold yes, Jews no!” said former Albanian Prime Minister Pandeli Majko
“Lately in Albania, politicians have been in tough arguments with each other, but there is no debate about your stay here in Albania. You are in our hearts,” he said in an emotional speech.
“If the Iranian regime wants to touch you, they must know that we said to the Nazi invaders that gold yes, Jews no. The ambassador of Iran has been kicked out of Tirana. So, don’t push us… Gold yes, Mojahedin no,” Mr. Majko emphasized. “I hope to come soon to see you in Tehran.”
Fatmir Mediu, Chairman of the Albanian Republican Party
Fatmir Mediu, Chairman of the Albanian Republican Party at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Welcome to Ashraf 3, the beginning of a free Iran,” said Fatmir Mediu, Chairman of the Albanian Republican Party, during his speech at the Free Iran rally. “We have to think about the next steps, but all of us agree that the time for a change in Iran is long overdue. The American government has stood up to change Iran and we wish that Europe also stands up for liberty and freedom for the people of Iran as God-given rights.”
“Last year the Albanian government expelled the Iranian ambassador because they planned to attack us when we gathered with mayor Rudy Giuliani to discuss Iran,” Fatmir Mediu said.
Fatmir Mediu emphasized the bi-partisan support for the Iranian resistance in Albania. “Madam Rajavi, your ten-point plan is for sure the future of Iran. Here in Albania we have our political differences, but we are united in your cause to support you for a free Iran,” Fatmir Mediu said. “We’d rather be remembered by history as people who fought with you for the freedom of the Iranian people than people who stood by and watched.”
Elona Jebrial, Deputy Minister of Interior in Albania
Albanian Deputy Interior Minister Elona Jebrial at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I was deputy interior minister when we started the relocation of the MEK people to Albania and it is fantastic that all of you are safe,” said Ms. Elona Jebrial.
“Dear brother, sisters, and friends,
“We support the MEK and all of their efforts. The Iranian regime’s human rights violations dossier must be referred to the UN Security Council... I support Madame Rajavi. She is beautiful inside out,” she said. “We have our differences in Albania but we are united for the cause of MEK.”
Delegation of U.S. Congressmen
Judge Ted Poe, former Member of the U.S. Congress
Judge Ted Poe, a former Member of the U.S. Congress, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“A few years ago we went to Iraq to see you in Camp Ashraf and then Iraqi MP Nouri Maliki went so mad that he expelled us from Iraq. However, now we can visit and see you,” Judge Ted Poe said.
“They said you won’t last in Camp Ashraf, but you made it a paradise. They said you can’t last in Camp Liberty, but you made it a paradise. And then they said you can’t leave Iraq, but with the help of our Albanian friends, you came here to Albania and created this paradise in Ashraf 3. And we will have an Ashraf 4 in Iran where all of us will be gathered together,” the former Congressman emphasized.
“It was the mistake for the U.S. to put the MEK in the terrorist list in the first place. But in the end, a federal judge ordered the State Department to delist the MEK… How ironic is this that the MEK is not on the terrorist list now but the IRGC and the Iranian government is on the U.S. terrorist list.
“There is nothing more powerful than a woman who has made up her mind. And that woman is Madame Rajavi and she has made up her mind for freedom for all of you,” Judge Poe stressed with pride.
“Yesterday, Governor Tom Ridge said that we are all given certain rights by God. There is a right mentioned in the Declaration of Independence. Governments are instituted among people to secure their God-given rights. And if governments don’t do that, the people have the right to abolish that government, like the mullahs in Iran,” he said.
“When the mullahs are arrested, I want Rudy Giuliani to be the prosecutor to have them on trial in my court. The mullahs killed 120,000 people, Ashrafis in Ashraf and Ashraf 2. And their plots against you here. Wherever there is terrorism, you see Iran’s IRGC. In many continents and even in the high seas. They have forfeited the right to rule the people of Iran. They are guilty of murder,” Judge Poe continued.
“Don’t fear the mullahs. Don’t let them deprive you of sleep at night. It is important that the mullahs fear you and you keep them awake at night. You speak for the voices that have been silenced by the murders that have taken place against them. They cry out for justice. Justice demands that the people of Iran rule their own country. The illegitimate regime of the mullahs is through,” he highlighted.
“Not long ago I was diagnosed with leukemia. Thanks to the prayers of many of you, I am able to continue the fight for Iran. Leukemia is cancer. The regime in Iran is cancer. We must all fight it as it will not go away on its own,” Judge Poe added.
“When you have a snake, you must cut off the head of the snake… I’m here to tell you that the lion with the sword will cut off the head of the serpent in Tehran,” he continued, raising many cheers from the crowd.
“Somethings are worth to die for and I don’t see anything more worth to die for than the cause of freedom in Iran,” Judge Poe said with pride.
“Azadi, Azadi, Azadi,” the Judge said, meaning freedom in Farsi.
Former Congressman Dana Rohrabacher
Former Congressman Dana Rohrabacher at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“We have worked together, Republicans and Democrats, not because we like you but because we share your values,” said former U.S. Congressman Dana Rohrabacher in his speech at the Free Iran rally.
“Madame Rajavi, thank you, God bless you. This movement will make a better world.
We as Americans, are attracted to people like ourselves. We are dedicated to freedom. Thank you because if you succeed, the world will be a safer and better place for my children,” Rohrabacher said. “I say with confidence that freedom will prevail.”
Rohrabacher commended the Albanian government for giving refuge to the members of the MEK. “The willingness of the Albanian people to take criticism and be the target of terrorism is heroic,” he said.
“The most powerful force in the world are those people who believe in freedom and are ready to sacrifice their lives for freedom. I’m saying this to the dictators in Tehran: Your days are numbered and the people here will carry the cause of freedom to Tehran,” Rohrabacher said.
“You are the most powerful force on the planet. You will prevail. As long as we have courageous people like you we don’t need to send American boots to the region,” he added. “I know you will win and I will be with you when we go to Tehran and declare free elections.”
Congressman Lance Gooden
Congressman Lance Gooden at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“The first thing I learned about Iran is that the most respected individual among the Iranian community is Madame Rajavi… We have to have regime change in Iran,” Congressman Lance Gooden said.
“I look forward to visiting in Tehran very soon… I encourage the young people across Iran to get together to fight and spread the message and young people are the future of Iran.”
Delegation of UK parliamentarians
British MP Matthew Offord
British MP Matthew Offord at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Salam Ashraf, Salam Iran, Salam Madame Rajavi!
“I am proud to be part of a successful cross-party effort to secure your resettlement here in Albania… Your movement with Madame Rajavi is at the forefront of the cause of freedom of Iran and you are the beacon of hope,” British MP Matthew Offord said.
“Yesterday, we saw the evidence of the Iranian regime’s persecution of you but we need the world to hear that… I urge my government to increase the number of people on its sanctions list for human rights violations in Iran,” he added.
“I support Madame Rajavi’s ten-point plan that provides a clear alternative to the current Iranian regime… I call upon the UK government to recognize Madame Rajavi’s ten-point plan,” Mr. Offord concluded.
Baroness Sandip Verma of the British House of Lords
Baroness Sandip Verma of the British House of Lords at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“There is no one stronger than a woman fighting for her children and land. Brave women in Iran are challenging the regime in every possible way. Many have been imprisoned and tortured in Iran,” said Baroness Sandip Verma.
“The regime in Iran considers women activists as enemies of state… My sister, Maryam Rajavi, a Muslim woman makes the resistance a unique example in the Middle East,” she added. “We hope to celebrate Madame Rajavi’s success, your success, our success in Iran soon.”
British MP Bob Blackman
British MP Bob Blackman at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I welcome the designation of the IRGC as a terrorist organization and to sanction the supreme leader,” said British MP Bob Blackman.
“I hope that the UK will join our American allies in this efforts soon… The mullahs only understand the language of firmness. The international community must make it clear that we in the free world stand with the Iranian people and their resistance, NCRI, to bring democracy and freedom in Iran,” he added.
“I don’t believe that theocracy has a future in Iran. Iran has a better future because it has a democratic alternative, a leader with Madame Rajavi and a viable platform… Last year we met in Paris, this year we met in Ashraf 3. Let us resolve that we met next year in Tehran.”
Sir Joseph Alan Meale
“The work you’ve done here is magnificent...Joe Liberman referred to the late Senator John McCain. An American hero and a great man committed to freedom.
“We are here to once again to oppose the mullahs for what they’re doing to the world. They are killing Iranians in the most diabolic way. They are violating the human rights of their population in every way,” Sir Alan Meale said.
“The Iranian regime supports terrorism in Yemen, Syria, and Afghanistan. Yet we see governments throughout the world, particularly in Europe, who stand idly by and argue for appeasement. Policies that haven’t worked and won’t work. Are they acting in their selfish interest? Definitely. But that is very dangerous for world peace. That is sheer madness,” he added.
“The only way forward is Madame Rajavi’s ten-point plan. It’s imperative that we don’t turn away from the process of democracy in Iran,” Sir Alan Meale continued.
“Madame Rajavi offers a real way, a democratic way and it is up to all of us to support that,” he added.
Governor Tom Ridge
Governor Tom Ridge at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Less than two years ago I suffered a serious cardiac attack and I may have died a couple of times on the way to the hospital. I received many cards of good will, but there hasn’t been any group or people in the world who send me more than you. I thank you for that,” said Tom Ridge, former Governor of Pennsylvania and the first U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security.
“You can imprison a man or a woman but you can’t kill an idea. You can exile a man or a woman but you can't kill an idea,” he said.
“I say to each one of you, we pay tribute to your relentless pursuit for justice and freedom in your homeland which has a rich history of culture and has contributed much to the rest of the world,” Governor Ridge said. “You fight for all who cherish freedom and democracy around the world.”
“There are probably millions in the world whose prayers are with you and your cause. Sometimes in your lives, you have to pursue causes bigger than yourself. 120,000 men and women have died embracing a cause bigger than themselves. You are embracing a cause bigger than yourself and you will prevail,” Governor Ridge said in his speech.
“Your courage and sacrifice will be responsible for the freedom and democracy of freedom generations. The same privileges that we take for granted in our countries,” Governor Ridge concluded.
Delegation of Arab and Muslim nations
Former Algerian Prime Minister Sid Ahmed Ghozali
Former Algerian Prime Minister Sid Ahmed Ghozali at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I would like to thank the residents of Ashraf… I would like to express my gratitude to the Albanian people and its leader for their humanity and solidarity. Albanians have shown that they are not big for their size but for the size of the ideas that they defend. When you defend democracy and freedom you become great people,” former Algerian Prime Minister Sid Ahmed Ghozali said.
“The Ashrafis have shown that the Iranian Resistance will survive under pressure… The Islamic Republic of Iran is a cruel and bloody religious dictatorship which want to dominate the Arabic Islamic world,” he added.
The price of freedom is high and I pray to god that you achieve victory and freedom as other countries did.
Syrian opposition figure Nazir Hakim
Syrian opposition figure Nazir Hakim at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“My dear sister Maryam, I am sure that you will be victorious. The freedom that you are seeking will be achieved. You have proven that you are able to bring freedom to Iran,” said Syrian opposition figure Nazir Hakim.
“With the help of the honorable lady, Madame Rajavi, I hope that we will overthrow the mullahs and will seek and set justice. Our revolution is peaceful. However, the Iranian regime doesn’t know what peace is,” he added. “I believe that you have the potential to build a new system and a much better one.”
“I would like to ask the U.S. and the European Union not to give to the Iranian and the Syrian regimes the opportunity to progress and if you can’t help, don’t impede. We need your media to show that these systems are cancers,” he continued. “I hope that we will have a new government in Iran and you will find the justice you seek.”
Former FBI Director Louis Freeh
Former FBI Director at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Madame Rajavi we salute you, we respect you and your ability to lead this peace movement.
I want to thank the people and the government, past, and present. of Albania for rescuing all of you in this room. An absolute gesture of humanity,” said Judge Louis Freeh, former director of the FBI.
“Years ago we were worried about your safety. Those of us in the U.S. who supported you became subjects of criminal investigations by our own government. And we welcomed that.
They didn’t ask us any questions. Nobody asked any questions about the MEK before the unjustifiably on the terrorism list. There was, I believe, very bad intent and collusion with the Iranian regime to designate a freedom organization to appease the terrorist regime. How ironic that we saw the IRGC go on to kill 19 American servicemen in the Khobar Towers,” he said.
“Look at the Iranian economy and what the corrupt leadership has done to the Iranian economy.
We will see an amazing change and we will see it quickly. We have to get ready for is the prosecution and conviction of the thousands of criminals who have murdered, assassinated and killed, not by accident, but a designed plan to mass murder a group of people.
“I see your museum as an evidence room that has photographs and digital records. All the evidence that exists and can’t be erased. Most importantly, what we heard yesterday, unbelievable heartbreaking testimony,” Judge Freeh continued.
“Apply your skills and start preparing for criminal prosecutions by an international criminal court. What will terrify terrorists more than anything is the prospect that they will be arrested and prosecuted under the rule of law,” Director Freeh said.
“I think of Ashraf 3 as temporary quarters. It’s Ashraf 4 that we would want to visit,” he concluded.
French MP Michèle de Vaucouleurs
French MP Michèle de Vaucouleurs at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Dear MEK members and the Iranian people, on behalf of a French committee for a democratic Iran. We are proud to be here with you,” said French MP Michèle de Vaucouleurs. “While tensions between Iran and the U.S. are on the rise, we are here to protect the interests of the Iranian people and protect democracy.”
De Vaucouleurs pointed to the need to bring attention to ongoing human rights violations in Iran. “The Parliamentary Committee for a Democratic Iran considers the deteriorating human rights situation in Iran should be discussed before any relations are resumed with Iran’s regime, she said. “President Emmanuel Macron said he was determined to observe human rights violations in Iran during his talks with Iranian officials. However, these principles are violated by the regime to this day.”
The French MP also praised the MEK for its persistence despite many trials and tribulations. “The regime has destroyed all that you have owned in Iraq. You have revived and you keep fighting for a democratic Iran against the mullahs. Your battle is not in vain and I know one day you will be hosting me in a free Iran.”
“The French people consider you brothers and sisters. Article 2 of the human rights declaration says that the aim of any political group is human rights and that includes the right to resist oppression,” she concluded.
French Mayor Jean-François Legaret
“We are all citizens of Ashraf. When we see this extraordinary energy and the miracles you’ve achieved, you’ve done all of this in 16 months. This is magnificent,” said Jean-François Legaret, the mayor of the 1st arrondissement of Paris.
“It is important that you eradicate the mullahs’ regime. Iran keeps on lying and deceiving. It is important that democracy in Tehran is achieved and freedom is achieved,” Mayor Legaret said about the Iranian resistance’s ongoing struggle.
Mayor Legaret then revealed his surprise. “We have decided to declare Ashraf 3 a city of international dialogue and a sister city of the 1st Arrondissement of Paris. We want to sign a declaration with the mayor of Ashraf 3,” Legaret said as he presented the declaration. “We promise to keep a dialogue between our municipalities and Ashraf 3. I’m happy with all my colleagues to give you this declaration.”
Delegation of Italy
Antonio Tasso, Paolo, Guiseppina, Manuel, Monica
Italian MP Antonio Tasso
Italian MP Antonio Tasso at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Iranian brothers and sisters, it is our honor to participate in this meeting to celebrate the freedom of speech and thought,” said Italian MP Antonio Tasso. “Your dream is guided by President Maryam Rajavi. I had the honor to meet President Rajavi at the meeting last year and I admire her charisma and 10 point plan for a free Iran… Thank you and Hazer, Hazer, Hazer.”
Italian MP Roberto Rampi
Italian MP Roberto Rampi at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Your dream of a free Iran is guided by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi and I admire her charismatic personality and a ten-point plan for a free Iran,” said Italian MP Roberto Ramp.
Italian MP Giuseppina Occhionero
Italain MP Giuseppina Occhionero at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Your martyrs sacrificed their lives in order to achieve freedom for Iran,” said Italian MP Giuseppina Occhionero. “We cannot have appeasement with such a bloodthirsty regime. We must investigate the Iranian regime’s human rights violations… We support you in your goals and stand with you.”
The Iranian future will be built by you.
Iranians from all strata rushed to the streets and demanded their freedom.
Madame Maryam Rajavi you have managed to mobilize the public opinion across the world against this regime.
Marc Ginsberg, former U.S. ambassador to Morocco
Former U.S. Ambassador to Morocco Marc Ginsberg at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Madame Rajavi, we had dreams. There is a field of aspirations, there are achievements and setbacks, but the one thing that drives us Americans is that what we try to achieve for ourselves can be achieved by every human being that believes in freedom,” said Marc Ginsberg, former U.S. Ambassador to Morocco.
“I have one expression that I say in Persian: “Shoma Behtarini!” You are the Best!” he added with enthusiasm.
“I worked for Senator Edward Kenedy who taught me that the challenge of helping the people who fight for freedom is a lifetime goal… We believe that we can help you to achieve what you wish to achieve,” he added.
“I’m just an ambassador and I hope that I will be able to see the day where a new U.S. embassy is opened in Iran and we can say: Azadi, Azadi, Azadi, meaning freedom,” Mr. Ginsberg added.
Dr. Salman Al-Ansari from Saudi Arabia
“Salam bar Mardome Iran. Dorud bar Shoma Ghahramenan Iran. Greetings to the people of Iran. Salute to you heroes,” said Dr. Salman Al-Ansari is the founder and president of the Washington DC-based Saudi American Public Relation Affairs Committee.
“Madame Maryam Rajavi, I’m proud to be here with you and fight against the system of Khomeini, even though the days of this system are over… We will see soon that Maryam Rajavi goes to Tehran and calls for the peace that she struggled for so much,” he added.
“My message for the rotten Khamenei: We know that you are trying to destroy the will of your people and you hide behind the injustice you do by killing and torturing people. But at the end of the day, the ruling mullahs in Iran will be overthrown,” he concluded.
German MP Eduard Lintner
German MP Eduard Lintner at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I feel very honored to be here and I would like to express my respect for you who are working for democracy and freedom in Iran. Your movement under the leadership of Madame Rajavi is a democratic alternative to the mullah regime,” said German MP Eduard Lintner.
“Last year, an Iranian diplomat was arrested in Germany because he wanted to bomb a great event by the Iranian Resistance in Paris in which I personally participated… We should not allow the mullahs to keep us hostage and impede and hinder us in your steps forward,” he added.
“Ladies and gentlemen, you are the ones who continuously fight for a free Iran and Europe must support you. Only in this way can we achieve peace in the world… We need a peaceful and tolerant Islam like you represent it,” he continued.
“We should thank the Albanian people and government for the support they are giving you. I hope this same support will apply in the future,” Mr. Lintner said. “We support you and thank you very much.”
German MP Martin Patzelt
German MP Martin Patzelt
“I have three messages,” said German MP Martin Patzelt.
1- I thank you and admire what you’ve done here in Ashraf 3, but also all the people around the world who’ve helped your cause of freedom and democracy.
2- To my government: We are not allowed to step back and pretend we are blind for the sake of economic interests. We need to support these people who are showing us what is going on.
3- To the Iranian regime: Don’t think that you will win. I was raised in Eastern Germany and when people want something they will prevail. This is the experience of my life and I hope we will achieve this together.
Sen. Ingrid Betancourt, former Columbian presidential candidate
Sen. Ingrid Betancourt at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I know how difficult it is to talk about our own suffering and we tend to be very abstract. Yet with the exhibit that you showed us, Madame Rajavi, the tortures that we saw there can only come from a psychopath,” said Sen. Ingrid Betancourt.
“Shame on those who demonize the MEK for the money of the Iranian regime’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS).
“Two weeks ago there was an op-ed in The New York Times that the IRGC is a transformed institute that is loved by the people and that’s why the Trump policy will fail. But that’s exactly why the U.S. policy will succeed because they are cutting the regime’s financial assets,” she added.
“Madame Rajavi, you are the force of change, the beacon of change, you are the phoenix rising from the ashes of devastation of the mullahs. Maryam and Massoud Rajavi, you are the guarantee of peace and democracy in Iran and the world,” Sen. Betancourt continued.
“To the mullahs: We are ready to take them down. We are united with the people of Iran that are taking the risk in Iran. We are coming to get you, the mullahs. We will get you to hold you accountable for the crimes you’ve done for decades,” she concluded.
Hadatha Lieberman, wife of Senator Joe Liberman
“When I think about the darkness I think about where I was born in Czechoslovakia, to parents who fled from concentration camps. I read all my life about terror and torture,” said Hadassah Lieberman, the wife of Senator Joe Lieberman.
“Yesterday, when I saw the darkness and the numbers of destruction in the museum and heard the voices of those who shared their stories, I saw the light in their eyes. I’m not trying to be biased but the light in the eyes of the women came shining out and struck me. I said to them that you are very, very special and a part of what we need in this world today is more light,” she said.
“You are going be the light that lights up the world… Be brave and keep lighting up,” Hadassah Lieberman concluded.
Former Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird
Former Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“It is a great honor for me to visit Ashraf 3 and see all of you personally and listen to your stories first hand,” said former Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird.
“We know the Iranian regime too well. We know that you have to combat the regime’s lies and propaganda. In Canada, we know that the appeasement of the mullahs is an absolute disgrace. We know that there isn’t such a thing as a moderate fascist,” he said.
“It is time to put an end to religious fascism, it is time for freedom, it is time for victory, it is time for the mullahs to go,” Mr. Baird concluded.
Yakin Ertürk, UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women (2003-2006)
Yakin Ertürk, UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women (2003-2006) - File Photo
“Salam Ashraf. The testimonies we received from the Ashraf residents put our humanity to test. I felt rage and hope, seeing the survivors continue their struggle with determination. Human dignity will defeat evil,” said Yakin Ertürk, UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women (2003-2006).
“In 2005, I was in Evin Prison as a UN human rights rapporteur. The conditions in the prison were very pleasant as the authorities knew we were coming… We lived in a troubled region. We the people of the region have aspirations for rights and freedom… Misogyny is now observed strictly in Iran. Many rapporteurs have repeatedly written about violence against women in Iran. Yet we must also note the women’s resilience on the street, in social media and even in the privacy of their homes,” she added.
“The new generation of Iranian women who are the product of the revolution era is as bold as their predecessors… Those of who support freedom and justice in Iran must join forces to empower the Iranian people’s struggle. We also need to navigate the region’s political forces. Iranian people, men, and women alike are the force of change,” Ms. Ertürk added.
Judge Susana Medina, former head of the International Association of Women Judges
Judge Susana Medina, former head of the International Association of Women Judges, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I come from Argentina, a victim of the Iranian regime’s terrorism… Maryam Rajavi’s ten-point plan is a plan of human rights. I hope to go with Maryam Rajavi to Iran where you will establish justice, gender equality, and freedom… Only on these terms can we have a free Iran,” said Judge Susana Medina from Argentina.
Bandanda Rana, Vice Chair - UN CEDAW Committee
Bandana Rana, Vice Chair - UN CEDAW Committee at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Such a joy, pride and honor to stand before the Iranian Resistance. I come from Nepal that is known for the Himalaya and the Budha. For the last three decades, I have worked for gender equality. I’ve started from my community in Nepal but my journey took me to the corridors of the United Nations,” said Bandana Randa, Vice Chair - UN CEDAW Committee.
“I recall 20 years ago, the moderator would ask one question and we had to answer within 10 seconds with one sentence. I said that I want every family to rejoice the birth of a girl.
I think that the power and resilience of the women of the Iranian Resistance is an example for other women in the world,” she said.
“When I looked at Maryam Rajavi’s ten-point plan I saw so much similarity with what we are advocating for… There cannot be peace without women. When your movement is led by a woman, peace is guaranteed sooner than later,” Ms. Rana concluded.
Maria Candida Almeida, Deputy Attorney General Of Portugal
Maria Candida Almeida, Deputy Attorney General Of Portugal, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I believe in your ideas and share your dreams of freedom and equality and liberation of your country,” said Maria Candida Almeida, Deputy Attorney General Of Portugal.
“I admire Madame Rajavi who has fought for these values in Iran. Martin Luther King had a dream and it came true. Gandhi had a dream to free his people and it came true. Nelson Mandela had a dream and it came true. Mrs. Rajavi your dream is noble and your dream will come true like the others. Thank you so much for your example,” she added.
Dr. Ranjana Kumari, Director of the Center for Social Research
Dr. Ranjana Kumari, Director of Center for Social Research, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Your resilience, your strength, and your hard work are evident to the whole world. Every stone speaks about your resolve,” said Dr. Ranjana Kumari, Director of Center for Social Research.
“I bring greetings from the global women network for change. Mahatma Gandhi said: Tyrants can suppress people for some time but when people rise tyrants don’t know where to go,” she said.
“What more than the global leaders want to see that the ten-point plan of Maryam Rajavi… I know that today we are one step closer to Iran, Maryam, Freedom… May you all see the victory under the sky very soon and I’m sure with all the global leaders here it won’t be long. Hazer, Hazer, Hazer,” Dr. Kumari said.
Amb. Robert Joseph, former U.S. Special Envoy for Nuclear Nonproliferation
Amb. Robert Joseph, former U.S. Special Envoy for Nuclear Nonproliferation, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“It is a great pleasure to be here today and be a small part for what I believe to be the cause of freedom in Iran and the whole world,” said Amb. Robert Joseph.
“The resistance units in Iran represent the front line of a historic battle between the good and evil. I know that think tankers reject that description as overly simplistic and emotional. With regard to being emotional, I have to say that you have to be emotional when you see the atrocities of the Iranian regime. With regard to being simplistic, I have to say that it is absolutely necessary to know that evil exists in the world and if we don’t do so we are going to tolerate it,” he added.
“Your cause will prevail over evil. More important than the magnificent buildings and the material accomplishments of you here in Ashraf is the idea. The Iranian regime may kill you and torture you and imprison your mothers and fathers but the regime will not triumph over your spirit,” Amb. Joseph emphasized.
“That spirit is not grounded in hate but in love… After the lies of the regime is exposed the facts will remain. The second president of the U.S. John Adams once said that facts are stubborn,” he continued.
“Fact is that there is a path to a secular non-nuclear and democratic Iran. Fact is that there is an alternative to the current regime in Iran. This is not in Syria or Libya. We have a government in exile that will establish democracy in Iran,” Amb. Joseph reiterated.
“It is a fact that the regime will fall, because of its terrorism, its corruption and most importantly the Iranian people’s desire for freedom… I’m truly proud to be in your company,” he concluded.
U.S. Military Delegation
General George Casey, former commander of the Multi-National Forces-Iraq
General George Casey at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“It’s a pleasure and privilege to be with you here tonight and witness what you've accomplished here… U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, said one year ago that Iran’s to behave like a normal country… Over the past year, Iran has increased its malign activities. Iran’s behavior is not normal. It’s terrorist behavior,” said Gen. George Casey (retired).
“It’s time! Change must come to Iran… I’m surprised when Iran continuously denies its efforts to sow instability. Many of us have first-hand experience how Iran uses terror and subversion to accomplish their political goals,” he added.
“I witnessed Iran train and equip Iraqi militias. I held Iran responsible for the death of hundreds of coalition forces,” Gen. Casey continued.
“The Iranian regime is a challenge not only for the Iranian people but also for the international community,” he explained.
“Ashrafis, what you have built here is a tribute to your courage, determination, and the 160 comrades who died during your journey here. You have cemented Ashraf 3 as the global center of the democratic alternative to the Iranian regime,” Gen. Casey explained.
“Change will come to Iran due to what you have done,” he concluded.
Gen. James Conway, former Commandant of the United States Marine Corps
Gen. James Conway, former Commandant of the United States Marine Corps, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“In the U.S. military when we start a major undertaking we try to set the conditions for success,” said Gen. James Conway, former Commandant of the United States Marine Corps.
“I ask all of you as representatives of your country to do more when you go back to your country. I ask you to use your names and influence so that your governments respond swiftly to the Iranian regime’s atrocities,” he added.
Saleh al‐Qalab, former Minister of Culture and Publicity of Jordan
Saleh al‐Qalab, former Minister of Culture and Publicity of Jordan, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“The mullahs will soon be overthrown under the leadership of Maryam Rajavi. Those who lead Iran today are not the leaders of the Iranian people. They are taking Iran a thousand years back in time,” said Saleh al‐Qalab, former Minister of Culture and Publicity of Jordan
“We stand by your side from around the world. You are in the heart of the Arab people because the greatest risk in that area is the risk coming from the mullahs,” he concluded.
Sali Berisha, former Albanian Prime Minister, and President
Sali Berisha, former Albanian Prime Minister, and President, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“It is a great pleasure and honor to me to salute you. People fighting for many years, for human rights and democracy. People facing difficulty for many years but standing up. You inspire every human being with your fighting,” Sali Berisha, former Albanian Prime Minister, and President.
“Two years ago I was in Paris at your meeting. At that time the great powers were negotiating with the Iranian regime and I thought how hard it would be for your fight against the Iranian regime. But a few years later you’ve been proven right. You are the hope of your nation,” he added.
“Albania must expel and will expel any official representative of the mullahs. You represent Iran,” Berisha continued.
“Maryam Rajavi’s ten-point plan is a plan inspired by your 100,000 martyrs. It’s a plan by universal values. I fully support that you will prevail. The mullahs have shown that they have no faith,” he said.
“Sooner or later the mullahs will face what they deserve. The caliphate of the mullahs will never prevail in the region,” the former Albanian prime minister concluded.
Ad Melkert, former UN special representative to Iraq
Ad Melkert, former UN special representative to Iraq, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“All of you are here now in the safety of Albania. What a change compared to 10 years ago. In 2009, the oasis of Ashraf was suddenly attacked. It also happened in 2011 and 2013. I’m proud that we started to open the eyes of the international community to what was happening in Ashraf,” said Ad Melkert, former UN special representative to Iraq.
“I remember meeting with diplomats in Baghdad and no one wanted to take responsibility until our Albanian friends came. I am sure the flags that are flying here today to welcome all of us from around the world will soon fly in Iran,” Mr. Melkert added.
Amb. Lincoln Bloomfield
Amb. Lincoln Bloomfield, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“The allegation of terrorism against the MEK has been completely debunked. We now know that no one from three generations of the resistance has ever been prosecuted for terrorism. Not one person,” said Amb. Lincoln Bloomfield.
“There is an obscuring curtain known as the allegation of the MEK is a cult. I have been here for three days. My friends and I have been able to talk with any MEK member we wanted to. These people are stronger than me and they are dedicated to keeping their choice of continuing to resistance,” he added.
“The allegation of the cult is gone forever and is finished. This is what has been accomplished here,” Amb. Bloomfield concluded.
Delegation of Nordic countries
The Nordic delegation at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
Former Norwegian MP Lars Rise
Former Norwegian MP Lars Rise at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“Ashraf 3 is a city that will write history. When I look at former prime minister Sali Berisha, his courage to start it when all the Western European countries said no because all of our countries were thinking about the nuclear deal. And all of this happened for the extraordinary leadership of Maryam Rajavi. She is already leading like the leader of a free Iran,” said former Norwegian MP Lars Rise.
“We have made great progress and now the situation has reversed where the MEK is off the terror list and the Iranian regime is blacklisted. The biggest money launderer in the world, the Iranian regime, is facing problems everywhere,” he added.
“All over the world, the Iranian regime is trying to impact journalists and politicians but this opposition will prevail. The truth will prevail,” Mr. Rise continued.
We are ready, Maryam Rajavi is ready, and we are encouraged to hear this word today so many times: We are ready,” he concluded.
Finnish MP Kimmo Sasi
“We know that the foundations of a welfare state are human rights, democracy, and economic freedom,” said Finnish MP Kimmo Sasi.
“It’s very important when we want to have changed that there is an alternative and Madam Rajavi’s ten-point plan is the alternative,” he added.
“40 million Iranians live in poverty today. Corruption, money laundering and the financing of terrorism are the reasons. We need sanctions so that money is stopped and returned to Iran when the country is free,” Mr. Sasi continued. “We see a demonstration in Iran that show frustration. Ashraf 3 shows that you have a strong commitment to change.”
“We Nordics support your cause for a free Iran,” he concluded.
Alejo Vidal Cuadras, former Vice President of the European Parliament
Alejo Vidal Cuadras, former Vice President of the European Parliament, at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“I have been attending these magnificent events for 15 years and this is the first time we celebrate our gathering in Ashraf. I say Ashraf because Ashraf one, two and three are the same uninterrupted beacon of resistance and freedom,” Alejo Vidal Cuadras, former Vice President of the European Parliament.
“I wish Massoud Rajavi, the leader of the Iranian resistance, well and salute him… I visited Ashraf one as the head of a parliamentary delegation years ago and I witnessed how the PMOI transformed a desert into a prosperous community. For men and women of that quality that transformed that desert, nothing is impossible and you have achieved that quality here in Ashraf 3,” he continued.
“Dear Ashrafis, you are unbeatable. That's why I’m convinced the Iranian regime will change sooner than later. We must all pay tribute to the people and officials of Albania for such humanitarian example,” Dr. Vidal Quadras added.
“There is a continuity line made of courage and resilience that connects Ashraf one, two, and three, but there won’t be an Ashraf 4 because it is already named thousands of years ago. Ashraf four has already a name and this name is Iran,” he said.
“Iran itself will be the final Ashraf. The whole country, our beloved and everlasting Ashraf, when freedom and respect for human rights and equality between men and women will be established in that country,” the former European Parliament Vice President continued.
“The alternative to the mullah’s nightmare is ready and it is Maryam Rajavi. She has created a team to which I’m proud to be a member. Nothing and nobody can stop the next Ashraf whose name is Iran,” he concluded.
Romanian MP Ben-Oni Ardelean
Romanian MP Ben-Oni Ardelean at the “Free Iran” conference in Ashraf 3 - Tirana, Albania - July 13, 2019
“My friends and I in Romania know what it is like to live under a brutal regime. 30 years ago the people stood for their belief in freedom and democracy. In those days the brutal regime was gone,” said Romanian MP Ben-Oni Ardelean.
“This is our hope that very soon the brutal and criminal regime will fall. Faith, love, and hope are everlasting. Your love for the people in Iran is motivating you and us to do what we do and fight against this terrorism and this criminal regime. Your hope brings you here year after year. We hope that one day very soon this regime will fall. We hope to do our best for our nation and every single human being that deserves freedom,” he added.
“I want to especially thank those representing different nations today. We should do what we can do to ensure this freedom comes for the Iranian people. I hope more nations come to this conclusion that we all have to do our best to provide full freedom for the Iranian people.
We congratulate and support Madam Rajavi. Freedom for the Iranian people,” Mr. Ben-Oni Ardelean concluded.
Irish Senator Gerry Horkan
Irish Senator Gerry Horkan (File Photo)
“We are hungry for change. It’s an enormous honor for me to be here. It’s an enormous honor to be here with renowned politicians such as Rudy Giuliani, Joe Lieberman, and Madam Rajavi,” said Irish Senator Gerry Horkan.
“Many of my colleagues from Ireland wanted to be here today. We are with you for freedom in Iran. We support the NCRI in everything you are trying to do… We know the regime is a threat to peace and stability. Tehran is causing havoc across the region. We must never forget that,” he added.
“Last week I was with the NCRI at the Berlin gathering. Nobody thought the Berlin Wall would fall when it did. I think the day is coming sooner than we think for the regime in Iran to fall and free and fair elections will be held in Iran,” Senator Horkan continued.
“I want to congratulate all of you for what you have done in Ashraf 3. Your museum and exhibition here show the atrocities are still happening in Iran. We must get rid of that regime and do everything we can to bring an end to the vicious mullahs’ regime. We are here from so many parts of the world to support you and Madam Rajavi,” the Irish Senator concluded.