Following news that a Belgian court will be hearing appeal cases of three Iranian agents who were convicted earlier this year of an attempted bomb plot of an Iranian opposition rally in France in 2018, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) conducted an interview with former Colombian Senator, Ingrid Betancourt who was in attendance at the ‘Free Iran’ rally in 2018.
The three men were a small part of a network of terrorist operatives under the command of Iranian diplomat Assadollah Assadi who worked at the Iranian regime’s embassy in Austria.
The NCRI questioned that because there has been no effort from European leaders to dismantle the regime’s terrorist network, what message does this inaction convey to the regime.
Ms. Betancourt said, “Security services in Germany, France, Belgium, and perhaps some other European countries carried out a successful joint operation in aborting one of the most horrifying crimes of the century.”
She explained how the regime’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) were the ones who authorized and ordered this plot against the Free Iran gathering, specifically to target the President-elect of the NCRI, Maryam Rajavi.
She further stated that the effect of the West giving concessions to the regime over the years encouraged them to the extent that they allowed one of their diplomats to misuse his privileges to transport explosives from Iran to the terrorist network in Europe, which effectively undermines Europe’s security.
The NCRI asked, “During the investigations in Assadi’s case, a green notebook was found with the names of the Iranian agents who were on Assadi’s payroll. What would you expect Western intelligence agencies to be doing with that sensitive information?”
Ms. Betancourt urged that Assadollah Assadi’s case was not the first terrorist plot in Europe, and if further inaction continues, it definitely won’t be the last.
She said, “This espionage network in Europe, which is used for terror plots, should have been exposed and destroyed, and the EU should have demanded from Tehran to dismantle its terror apparatus. But unfortunately, due to appeasement policy, this has not happened, and the regime’s terror cells are active in Europe, and the EU is only focused on reviving the JCPOA.”
Another question posed to Ms. Betancourt was what she would expect Western governments to do in regards to the regime’s terrorist network.
Ms. Betancourt highlighted that the top priority for Western governments right now is security. Continuing to negotiate with the regime will only give further concessions to terrorists and bring future threats to Europe, saying that, “The regime will never stop its terrorism as it lives on terrorism abroad and human rights violations at home.”
She stated that the past four decades of a rise in human rights violations in Iran, and terrorism across the world has proven this point, and the policy of appeasement that Western governments have used when dealing with the regime has only contributed to the trend.
The NCRI’s final question was, “It’s clear that the Iranian regime is mostly interested in eliminating its own opposition and dissidents abroad. But how does that impact the security of Western ordinary citizens anyway?”
Ms. Betancourt explained that the plot to bomb the rally in France in 2018 clearly shows how much of a threat the regime is to countries around the world. The gathering was attended by hundreds of high-ranking officials, as well as ordinary citizens, not only from European countries but North America and the Middle East also.
She said, “Therefore, as I said, so long as a decisive political measure is not taken against the Iranian regime and its terror network in Europe no one worldwide is safe and something must be done about it.”