Some 240 lawmakers from 19 European countries have signed a joint statement calling for their governments to take a tougher approach to the Iranian regime for its terrorism and human rights abuses, at the same time as an Iranian diplomat stands trial in Belgium for attempting to blow up a rally in France in 2018.
The International Committee of Parliamentarians for a Democratic Iran (ICPDI) and the British Committee for Iran Freedom (BCFIF) warned about “the Iranian regime’s terrorist acts in Europe” in the Tuesday statement, where they also highlighted the trial of Assadollah Assadi and his three accomplices.
“In addition to tens of thousands of Iranians, the opposition leader Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the primary target of the conspiracy, was present at the rally, along with several hundred political figures from various countries. Had this terrorist operation succeeded, it would have undoubtedly left hundreds killed and many more wounded,” they wrote.
The statement noted that this and related terrorism and espionage actions led to the expulsion of several Iranian diplomats from Europe since the beginning of 2018, which is no surprise because the regime increased their efforts to extinguish the Resistance that year, following the 2017 uprising that rocked the regime to its core.
British MP and co-president of ICPDI Bob Blackman, who is a civil party in the ongoing trial, said: “Today we stand with [Rajavi] and call on the UK and the European Governments to proscribe the entire IRGC [Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps] and Iran’s Intelligence Ministry [MOIS] as terrorist organizations because these paramilitary institutions are critical to the regime’s internal repression and export of terrorism and must be denied funds and resources.”
He stressed that evidence in the trial “prove beyond doubt” that the bomb plot was approved by the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, so Europe must hold Iran to account.
The lawmakers warned against further appeasement of the regime, highlighting how this has only emboldened the mullahs’ “illegal and unacceptable behavior”, which includes terrorism, warmongering, and domestic repression.
British MP Steve McCabe said that the most effective policy is to pressure the regime and back the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people and their Resistance.
The statement made the following recommendations:
- relations with Iran should be contingent on an end to Iranian terrorism in Europe
- Iran’s embassies should be closed and its diplomats expelled
- Iran’s intelligence agents, who are posing as innocent journalists or refugees, should be expelled
- Iran’s religious and cultural centers should be closed for their role in terrorism