by Staff writer, SF
Dozens of lawmakers and political dignitaries from Italy, Germany, Britain, France, Poland, Ireland, Romania, Switzerland, Malta, Lithuania and Portugal, as well as Ms. Ingrid Betancourt, former Columbian presidential hopeful, participated and addressed the conference on Friday, February 9, 2018.
The conference was held in Auvers-sur-Oise entitled, Iranian people’s uprising, and international call for freedom of prisoners of the uprising. Maryam Rajavi the president elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran was the keynote speaker at this conference.
Maryam Rajavi called for urgent action to free prisoners of the uprising, guarantee freedom of speech and abolish the compulsory veil.
Maryam Rajavi called on the European Union and its member states to adopt effective measures and binding decisions to compel the religious fascism ruling Iran to free prisoners of the uprising, guarantee freedom of speech and assembly, end suppression of women and abolish the compulsory veil.
Maryam Rajavi issued the call during a conference entitled, “Iran Uprising - International Call for Release of Detainees” on Friday, February 9, 2018, where lawmakers and political personalities from 11 European countries participated.
Mrs. Rajavi said, “The driving force of the protests --which rapidly spread in a few days to 142 cities with chants of ‘death to Khamenei,’ ‘death to Rouhani,’ and ‘reformists, hardliners, beware that the game is over’-- was made up of women and the deprived social sectors.
Despite any ups and downs, the uprising will move on. The regime is incapable of stopping it. There are signs of alarm and concern even inside the IRGC and Bassij militia. The wall of fear has been cracked, and nothing including arrests, killings and torture can prevent the advancement of the protests to overthrow the regime.”
Ms. Ingrid Betancourt, former Columbian presidential candidate, also addressed the conference. In part of her remarks, she said, “The uprising in Iran is dramatic and gives us hope. What seemingly began as a protest over economic problems mushroomed into a nationwide uprising to overthrow the regime in Iran. It is not an isolated, non-organized incident. It is a grassroots movement. Things will never be the same in Iran after the uprising. This has lots of consequences and it should make us change the way we in the West look at Iran. They call for a radical change of regime. The people of Iran who take part in these protests have the same slogans that Mrs. Rajavi has said for so many years. There is a direct link between the protests and the Iranian Resistance, not just in having the same slogans; but they also have the same objectives. The Iranian Resistance has been fighting for so many years to bring about regime change, and that is what the people of Iran want. We in the West can no longer have a policy of appeasement towards the Iranian regime when the people on the streets of Iran are saying they don’t want appeasement of the regime. It is time that our governments around the world recognize the legitimacy of the National Council of Resistance of Iran.”
Lord Anthony Clarke, member of the House of Lords and former leader of the Labour Party, in his remarks to the conference said, “The Iranian resistance, in particularly the network of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), has played a pivotal role in organizing the protests in Iran as it did a remarkable job in breaking the ayatollahs censorship and informing the world about the scope of the protests. On January 9, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei made public statements acknowledging the leading role played by the PMOI in planning and executing the protests. The fact is that more young people are attracted to the Iranian resistance and the calls by Mrs. Rajavi. It is time for Europe to pay heed to this reality and to adopt its policy accordingly.”
The Hon. Martin Patzelt, member of the German Bundestag’s Human Rights Committee, said: “We, as Europeans are morally obligated to stand by young Iranian protesters who clearly and demonstrably showed and expressed their desire for regime change and attaining freedom and democracy. The notion that Iranian political landscape is defined by contest between ‘moderates’ and ‘hardliners’ was proven to be a myth. Europe should speak out in defense of detained protesters and demand their immediate, unconditional release. Silence in face of Tehran’s unbridled terror in dealing with protestors who demand bread and freedom is totally unacceptable. We should expose the wrong-doings and inhumane attitude of the Iranian regime.”
In a joint declaration, the participants declared support for the call issued by Maryam Rajavi and reiterated, “The European Union must refrain from dealing with companies and individuals affiliated with the Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and other organs of suppression. The continuation and expansion of political and economic relations with the Iranian regime must be conditioned on freedom of prisoners and end to executions. Also they urged for the formation of an international UN commission to investigate into the arrests and disappearances of Iranian protestors.”