Maryam Rajavi at Finnish Parliament
Maryam Rajavi : Time for Europe to stand with Iranian people
NCRI, Monday, 15 March 2010 - Mrs. Rajavi was the keynote speaker in a meeting held at the Parliament of Finland during her visit to that country. At the session organized by the Human Rights group of the Finnish Parliament, a declaration of support by the majority of the country’s lawmakers for the Iranian people’s uprising and the rights of Camp Ashraf residents was unveiled. Below is the text of Mrs. Rajavi’s speech at the session:
Ladies and gentleman,
It is a pleasure to be in the House of Democracy and among the elected representatives of the people of Finland today.
First of all, allow me to thank the Parliamentary Human Rights Group for holding this meeting.
I also wish to express gratitude, on behalf of combatants of freedom, human rights activists, political prisoners and all victims of the religious dictatorship in Iran, for your attention to the situation of human rights in my country.
The Iranian people value your support for their struggle for Democracy. Your efforts will, no doubt, be recorded in the Iranian history.
I am speaking on behalf of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a broad coalition of personalities and parties who seek democratic change in Iran. The Council represents different beliefs, religions and political tendencies and ethnic backgrounds across Iran. It seeks a Republic based on the separation of church and state, pluralism and complete gender equality. It is committed to abolish the death penalty and believes in a nuclear-free Iran.
Its pivotal force, the People’s Mojahedin (PMOI/MEK), which believes in a tolerant interpretation of Islam, has played a decisive role in exposing the mullahs’ fundamentalist interpretation of Islam.
Under the mullahs, 120,000 of its members have been murdered during the struggle for freedom. This book contains the names of 20,000 of them.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I would like to now draw your attention to two urgent issues concerning the Iranian Resistance and the people’s uprising for freedom.
The first deals with the prospects of change in Iran and the need for the European Union to change its policy vis-à-vis Iran.
The second is the dangerous situation at Camp Ashraf in Iraq, home to members of the opposition, and the need to support it.
Since last June, uprisings have been sweeping Iran. Iranians are openly demanding a complete overthrow of the regime and the establishment of Democracy. The regime, on the other hand, has failed to contain the uprising.
The events of the past nine months have proven that:
- The situation cannot be reversed;
- The mullahs’ regime is suffering from a fatal crack within itself;
- The explosive society cannot be contained; and
- The regime is getting closer to its downfall.
To confront the uprisings, the regime has murdered hundreds so far, injured thousands and imprisoned and tortured thousands more.
Rape is used systematically as a form of torture against prisoners, especially women.
Following the December 27 uprising, the mullahs arrested a large number of PMOI supporters because of the role they played in the protests. In staged trials, the regime sentenced many of them to death under the label Moharebeh (which means waging war on God). In one such staged trial, a young girl, who had been arrested because her family was in Ashraf, revealed that her nails had been pulled out. She and many like her, only demand Democracy and respect for Human Rights.
Despite such brutalities, the uprisings have continued in Iran leaving the mullahs with extraordinary crisis.
- To maintain their balance in the face of the uprisings, the mullahs are trying to generate new crises;
- They have stepped-up efforts to obtain nuclear weapons.
- They have increased the number of centrifuges and are enriching their uranium to 20 percent purity.
- The mullahs need nuclear weapons to survive.
Tehran has also increased its support for fundamentalist groups in the region to create more crises. US officials in Iraq recently warned about the Iranian regime’s intensified meddling and destructive role in Iraq.
For many years, the West exercised a flexible approach to the regime. But it has now recognized that the regime cannot reform or be contained. Therefore, changing this regime is as necessary and urgent for establishing freedom in Iran as for safeguarding global peace and security.
Terrorism and fundamentalism are not only our enemy; this Phenomenon is the enemy of humanity and the source of crisis in many parts of the world.
As I have said before; change will only come through the Iranian people and their organized resistance. Unfortunately, by engaging and appeasing Tehran, Western governments have been on the side of the Iranian regime.
Time has now come for Europe to stand with the Iranian people.
The second issue, as I said, deals with Ashraf, home to 3,400 members of the main Iranian Resistance movement, the PMOI.
Although Ashraf is located inside Iraq and 50 miles from the Iranian border, the mullahs do not see it as a separate issue from the uprisings inside the country. Ashraf is an inspiration to the struggle of Iranian women and youth for Freedom and Equality.
For this reason, the mullahs see the destruction of Ashraf necessary for curbing the uprising.
Last February, the regime’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, demanded from the Iraqi President and Prime Minister to implement the bilateral agreement to destroy Camp Ashraf as quickly as possible.
Last July, the Iraqi government, at the request of the mullahs, attacked Camp Ashraf, killing 11 and wounding 500.
In the past months, the pressures on Ashraf have continued in the form of an inhumane blockade.
In addition, following the demands made by the mullahs, the Iraqi Prime Minister announced that it intends to send the residents of Ashraf to a location near the Saudi border.
This relocation is clearly preparing the grounds for the massacre of Ashraf residents.
Since one month ago, the mullahs have taken new measures, sending teams from the terrorist Qods Force from Iran to Ashraf, where they have been stationed and publicly threaten that the next bloody attack is close.
I must recall that since July, Amnesty International and its offices worldwide have issued 67 statements about the situation of Ashraf.
On March 1, Amnesty warned, 'Iraqi security forces continue to make life difficult for the residents.'
In the past two years, we repeatedly warned that a catastrophe is in the making. If those warnings had been heeded, the killings of July 28 and 29 could have been averted.
If the international community does not act quickly, a humanitarian catastrophe, larger than the one in July, is about to happen. The United Nations must take on a more active role to guarantee the security of Ashraf residents and the non-use of force against them.
Therefore, I have come here, to urge the Government and Parliament of Finland to work to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe in Ashraf.
I ask you and, through you, the Finnish government, to take initiative to encourage the UN in order to assume responsibility for the protection of Ashraf residents.
The independence of action and neutral position of Finland in the years past and its legacy as a defender of human rights have placed it in a very special position; to take this humanitarian initiative and support the Iranian people’s uprising without regards to economic and political considerations.
Indeed, the people of Finland understand the depth of our pain and the scale of our Resistance movement, because they have waged a glorious resistance against occupation. The name of Marshal Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim still arouses respect.
I thank you very much.