Dozens of members of the UK’s House of Commons and House of Lords met with members of the Anglo-Iranian communities on Tuesday to celebrate the Persian New Year at an event in the Parliament.
While there, the MPs and Peers from almost all political parties expressed their condolences to the bereaved families in Shiraz and across Iran, who have suffered through devastating floods in recent weeks. They also urged the UK government to condemn the Iranian Regime for its failed relief efforts, which have mainly been about sending in suppressive forces to quell protests about the lack of relief. They further stressed to the British government about the need to work with the European Union to end this vile crackdown in the flood-stricken areas.
Sir David Amess MP, co-chairman of the British Committee for Iran Freedom (BCFIF) welcomed the participants to the Nowruz celebration in the Parliament and said, “We reiterate our call on the UK Government to support the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people and recognise the NCRI. The UK should join the US campaign of maximum pressure on Iran regime. It is time for the UK to stand on the side of millions of Iranians and not on the side of the mullahs. The future of Iran belongs to those who stood and struggle against both the Shah’s dictatorship and the religious dictatorship.”
Steve McCabe MP said, “Human rights continue to deteriorate in Iran. The regime’s brutal crackdown to a year of sustained popular anti-regime protests and strikes by workers show that the regime leaders are neither willing nor interested in addressing the legitimate demand of Iranian people. The UK must now take the lead internationally to secure an accountability process backed by the international community and Europe to hold the regime to account for its serious human rights abuses, including the 1988 massacre of thousands of political prisoners.”
The parliamentarians noted that the Regime was at its weakest point, both domestically and internationally, which is why it is striking out at the Iranian Resistance movement through terrorist plots and a massive disinformation campaign.
The speakers explained that the disinformation campaign has not affected their views of the Resistance because they know how the Regime operates and they know that the Resistance is a democratic, freedom-seeking movement. That is why they support the Iranian Resistance, its leader Maryam Rajavi, and her 10-point democratic platform for future Iran
Farzin Hashemi from the NCRI Foreign Affairs Committee said: “As [Maryam] Rajavi, emphasised in her New Year message, a change in Iran is within reach. The people of Iran deserve a free and democratic country and they will write and create such a destiny with their own hands. The gates of Iran are open to embracing a future without oppression, inequality and injustice; a republic based on the separation of religion and state; a country ruled by its people’s suffrage and sovereignty, where the people’s votes have the first and final words.”
Other attendees included, Stephen Pound MP; Rt Hon Sir Roger Gale MP; Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP, Former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland; Rt Hon John Spellar MP, Former Shadow Minister for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs; Bob Blackman MP; Baroness Redfern; Rt Hon Lord Dholakia OBE DL, Co-Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrat Peers; Lord Singh of Wimbledon CBE; Lord Maginnis of Drumglass; Lord Clarke of Hampstead CBE; Malcolm Fowler, Former Member of the Human Rights Committee of the Law Society of England and Wales; Hossein Abedini, the NCRI Foreign Affairs Committee; Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP; Dr David Drew MP; Afzal Khan MP; Andy McDonald MP; Faisal Rashid MP; Eleanor Smith MP; and Jack Lopresti MP.