This article is part of our series that explores Tehran’s terror activities and Iranian diplomat Assadollah Assadi‘s role in a bombing plot against the opposition rally in Paris in June 2018.

Iranian Resistance President-elect Maryam Rajavi has welcomed the guilty verdict and 20-year sentence in the terrorism trial of Iranian diplomat Assadollah Assadi. 

Rajavi wrote on Twitter: “Conviction of the regime’s terrorist diplomat… represents the conviction of the entire clerical regime.” 

Assadi, a former diplomat at the Iranian embassy in Vienna, was found guilty of attempting to blow up a 2018 Free Iran event in France, where Rajavi and 100,000 Resistance supporters were in attendance. 

The Plot 

The prosecutors proved that he smuggled the explosives into Europe in his diplomatic luggage before driving to Luxembourg to hand them off to two co-conspirators – Nasimeh Naami and Amir Saadouni – who were to drive the bomb on to the convention centre and plant it as close as possible to Rajavi, which would have led to hundreds, if not thousands, of deaths. A third accomplice, Mehrdad Arefani, was to watch the explosion and notify Assadi. 

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Naami and Saadouni, who received 18 and 15 years in prison respectively, were arrested in Belgium before they could get to the rally and Arefani, who was sentenced to 17 years, was arrested outside the centre, while Assadi was arrested in Germany the next day. 

Many of the dignitaries and supporters in attendance submitted affidavits in a separate civil case against Assadi, where they sought to showcase that this was not a move made by a single person or group, but part of a pattern of terrorism by the Iranian regime. This was also supported by evidence provided in the Belgium trial, as well as that being used in a forthcoming German trial against Assadi. 

A Change is Needed 

In Rajavi’s comments, she reiterated that the West must change its policy on Iran to one of firmness, in order to hold the regime accountable and stop future terrorism from happening. This was agreed to by many other supporters of the Iranian Resistance in an online conference on Thursday. 

Former US Undersecretary of State Robert Joseph warned that more concessions to the regime will only bring further injustice to the Iranian people and more terrorist acts”. While former Columbian presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt advised that “he sheer madness to kill thousands of civilians shows the fear of the regime of being overthrown by its own people”. 

So, What Should The West Do? 

The Iranian Resistance and its supporters recommend “isolating the regime diplomatically and financially”, as well as supporting the Iranian people’s democratic uprisings, and imposing sanctions and travel restrictions on Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, who is the overseer of the embassies used for terrorism.