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British Parliament Hosts International Conference to Discuss Middle East Crisis and Advocate Action Against Iranian Regime

International Conference in British Parliament – November 28, 2023

At a conference hosted at the British Parliament, representatives from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords collaborated to address the escalating crisis in the Middle East. Featuring a video message from Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, the conference included remote speeches by former United States Senator Robert Torricelli and former US Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, contributing to a comprehensive discussion on the urgent need for international intervention.

Prominent speakers at the conference encompassed MP David Jones, MP Bob Blackman, Lord Singh, MP Jim Shannon, MP Martin Day, Baroness Uddin, Lord Whitty, Baroness Meacher, Baroness Eaton, and Lord Frank Field. The pressing issue of terrorism perpetrated by the Iranian regime, notably the recent heinous attack on former EU Parliament First Vice President Mr. Alejo Vidal Quadras, was a focal point for many speakers.

The speakers at this conference urged the West to take specific actions against Tehran. These actions included designating the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization, activating the snapback mechanism based on UN Security Council Resolution 2231, placing the Iranian regime under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, severing diplomatic ties with Tehran, and formally recognizing the Iranian people’s right to overthrow the oppressive regime.

In her address to the conference, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi cited the joint statement signed by 525 members of the Houses of Commons and Lords from all parties, supporting the recognition of the NCRI and designation of the IRGC, stating, “There was also a recent cross-party statement by members of the UK parliament, who called for the designation of the IRGC as a terrorist entity. The statement notes that the root cause of most of the problems in the Middle East is the policy of the Iranian regime and the IRGC.”

She added, “Today, the mullahs are engaged in three wars: A war with the international community involving their nuclear bomb-making activities and their deadly drones used in the war against the people of Ukraine. The other war is with the countries in the region, involving the regime’s proxy groups and provoking wars in Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and today in Israel and Gaza. But the clerical regime’s most important war is with the people of Iran.

“Since the start of the war in the Middle East on October 7, the mullahs have executed 170 individuals in Iran. By these executions, the regime attempts to prevent the outbreak of another uprising by the people of Iran. The wars with the region and the world are also intended to preserve the mullahs’ rule inside Iran. Khamenei has repeated time and again that if they do not fight in the countries in the region, they would have to fight in Tehran. Unfortunately, the European governments and the US covered up the fact that Khamenei ordered the attack on October 7. Whereas, they should expose the main threat, the Iranian regime, and encourage the international community to stand up against its hostilities.”

Referring to the Iranian regime’s “double game”, Mrs. Rajavi said, “While their proxies continue their attacks, the regime claims that they act independently and denies its own intentions to expand the war. The mullahs’ objective is to get through this stage and set the scene for another conflict later on. The head of the snake is in Tehran. The center of export of war and terrorism is in Tehran. I must emphasize again that the slaughter of innocent civilians on all sides benefits Khamenei and his Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The war needs to be stopped. We should stand up to the regime that fuels this war, and support the government of President Mahmoud Abbas, the legal and legitimate representative of the people of Palestine.”

Addressing the conference online, Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield described how the Middle East conflict has taken its toll on Western societies, stating, “The Middle East is smoldering with tension, grief, and mistrust, while our own societies are poisoned with divisive anger tinged with hatred. Since the Hamas attack on southern Israel on October 7th, a contagion of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia has infected our societies.”

Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield expresses skepticism about the official narrative surrounding recent hostilities involving Tehran, questioning the media and analysts’ lack of critical examination. He dismissed Western leader’s claims that the regime in Iran was unaware of the impending attack, pointing to intercepted shiploads of weapons and high-level meetings between Iranian leaders and regional proxies.

Citing the long history of the regime’s hostage-taking and Western cowing, Ambassador Bloomfield hinted at the solution as he stressed, “For the clerics ruling Iran, the NCRI represents the one and only threat that they cannot survive, a group of educated Iranian Muslims who reject the form of Islam at the heart of the regime’s power. The MEK and NCRI have always said that Islam means freedom. Women can be good Muslims and have full political and legal rights, including in marriage and employment. They wear the headscarf voluntarily as a personal act of piety. The women and girls of Iran understand this well and are in open revolt against the regime. The regime has failed to govern in every other respect. Iran’s currency has lost nearly half its value in the past decade.”

Senator Robert Torricelli, connecting online to the conference, remarked on the global shift of focus from the Iranian regime, stating, “There’s a tendency, that now the world has another competing problem. The fighting in Gaza, followed by the war in Ukraine, the difficulties with the arming of North Korea, and the civil war in Yemen. But today, at least in this room and among us, we can see that there is a common thread. There is no resolution to the problem of Palestine. There is no likely scenario to a two-state solution that can end this long impasse and this terrible decades-long struggle any more than there is likely a resolution in Ukraine without dealing with the problem of the regime in Tehran.”

Senator Torricelli added, “For those who have maintained, in our State Department, as I would argue in the White House, the belief that time will cure the Iranian problem, that somehow they’ll come around, somehow the regime will evolve, somehow this will all end, perhaps now seeing these multitudes of problems and this common thread coming from the regime in Tehran is recognizing there is no resolution. We’re not going to find an easy path to resolve any of these problems until we deal squarely and honestly with the problem in Tehran. And that means strengthening, not lessening our resolve. It means sanctions not only being implemented but fully enforced. It means the designation of terrorist organizations honestly and fully with all consequences. And mostly it means embracing an Iranian opposition.”

During the conference, Senator Torricelli seized the opportunity to convey a message to Prof. Vidal Quadras, stating, “There’s a chance that undoubtedly the Iranian regime is monitoring what you’re doing today. Let them understand that like Dr. Quadras who is not a coward in any way by the attempt on his life, neither are the rest of us. This cowardly attack on free speech in Europe by virtue of the attack on his life only makes us redouble our efforts. There was a similar but unsuccessful attempt organized on the life of John Bolton in the United States a year ago. I know my American colleagues reacted similarly. We were outraged. We’ve redoubled our commitment to the MEK, to Mrs. Rajavi. I know in Europe you’ll be doing the same, but lest that either Dr. Quadras or the regime was monitoring our conversation today, I wanted to address both of them in the strongest terms.”

Explaining in length the Iranian regime’s terrorism and regional warmongering, MP Bob Blackman, a member of the House of Commons, advocated for a firm policy, stating, “The UK must move ahead and proscribe the IRGC to deny the resources and funds it needs to export terrorism and to sustain and intensify the domestic repression. Such a decision will also make it a clear criminal offense to support and work with the IRGC in the UK, which is long overdue. And we have many agents of the IRGC operating in the UK.

“Also, I agree with Madam Radjavi and urge the government to work with allies and partners to place the clerical review under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter as a threat to world peace and security. The international community must accept and acknowledge this truth, so they can focus on supporting the solution, which the only solution here is the democratic alternative as presented by the NCRI and Mariam Rajavi.

“It then follows that the UK should lead the international community in cutting all diplomatic ties with the Iranian regime, and close the embassy until such time as the regime ends its terrorism, warmongering, hostage-taking diplomacy.

“At this point, in my opinion, diplomacy with Tehran is more harmful than being beneficial, because it hands the regime a political recognition that it neither should have or deserve. Contrary to the lies and deception spread by the regime’s influence network, an Iranian solution and viable democratic alternative to the regime’s warmongering does exist. It is the organized resistance of movement with its Resistance Units across Iran, presented by the NCRI and Madam Rajavi.

“The sooner the UK recognizes and endorses this Iranian popular alternative, the more effective will be our policy responses to counter the regime’s warmongering and terrorism. The Iranian people and the UK have a common enemy, which is the regime in Iran, only by cooperating with people and their true representatives, namely the NCRI and Madam Rajavi, we can defeat the brutal and criminal regime in Tehran.”
MP David Jones, a member of the House of Commons, stated, “Many have wrongly interpreted the increasingly bellicose stance of the [Iranian] regime as a sign of its strength and part of the natural tendency of what is regarded as a regional superpower to seek to increase its sphere of influence. And this, I suggest, is in all probability the main reason for the United States and the United Kingdom’s soft-line approach to Iran. The regime’s barely disguised warmongering serves several immediate purposes.

“Firstly, it provides cover for its domestic repression and diverts international attention from its appalling human rights record and suppression of the popular uprising.

“Secondly, it gives the regime the opportunity to gain political and diplomatic legitimacy on the international and regional stage instead of being rejected for what it is, as a pariah state.

“Thirdly, it allows the regime to use the conflict in the Middle East, waged by its proxies Hamas and Hezbollah, to create division within Western democracies along religious and ideological lines, as indeed we are witnessing in the United Kingdom at the moment.

“And fourthly, it allows the regime to exploit the emerging divisions with Western democracies to facilitate terrorist attacks, especially targeting critics, proponents of a firm policy, and members of the Iranian democratic opposition.”

Mr. Jones added, “The real geopolitical battle now is between the Iranian regime and the Iranian people and their organized resistance movement, the NCRI. And our own security and economic interest, indeed, that of the entire West, is in the Iranian people and the NCRI prevailing in that struggle. Therefore, the solution is before us. It’s time to act to ensure that that victory comes sooner rather than later. We don’t need to engage militarily. We need to recognize the NCRI and endorse its democratic platform and back the Iranian people in their fight for a democratic republic and indeed for justice.”

Baroness O’Loan, member of the UK House of Lords, said, “There have been multiple calls for the government to prescribe the IRGC, to declare it a terrorist organization. Yet still they delay, despite a unanimous call by the House of Commons, through wide cross-party support in the House of Lords for IRGC proscription. What this means, in reality, is best acknowledged by the Home Office’s Commissioner for Countering Extremism, Robin Simcox, who recently revealed that Iran looks to spread its influence in the UK via sermons delivered by receptive clerks, television channels, schools and educational institutions, donations to UK universities and online disinformation campaigns.”

Calling on the UK government to act against the IRGC, Baroness O’Loan added, “We saw last week the German security services raided a number of institutions and centers affiliated to the Iranian regime and Hezbollah across seven states. They are now conducting an investigation. We too need to act to curtail the activities of these people in our country and to investigate what is happening.”

“Most importantly, we all know the actual hard, dangerous, and it must be terrifying work to defeat Iran’s regime’s terrorism and warmongering is done by the people of Iran and the Iranian resistance movement led by Madam Rajavi. They are fighting to end the totalitarian theocratic rule in Iran and secure a free republic governed of, by, and for the people. The UK should recognize the Iranian people’s right to take their country back from this brutal dictatorship.”

MP Jim Shannon, member of the UK House of Lords, said, “Tehran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, knows that without foreign meddling, his increasingly fragile and vulnerable regime cannot survive another uprising like those in 2013, 2019, 2018, and 2017. The Middle East is in turmoil, largely fueled by the warmongering dictatorship ruling Iran.”

MP Shannon emphasized the need to designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization, urging the closure of the regime’s embassies, the expulsion of its agents, and support for the Iranian people’s struggle for freedom and democracy. He concluded his remarks by asserting that confronting the clerical regime’s belligerence is crucial for peace and stability in the Middle East, advocating for global solidarity with the Iranian people’s quest for a free and democratic Iran.

Lord Singh, a member of the House of Lords stated, “The Iranian regime has enjoyed impunity both domestically and abroad due to the lack of decisive action from the international community. It has a dark record of cruel and inhuman behavior, including the massacre of political prisoners, brutal crackdowns on popular uprisings, and political interference outside its borders. And as we’ve been reminded, more people are executed in Iran than in any other country.”

He added, “There is, however, a beacon of hope, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a democratic resistance movement working tirelessly for the Iranian people’s aspiration for freedom and democracy. The NCRI, along with its Resistance Units, has presented what is, to me, a credible and democratic alternative. And it is encapsulated, and we’re delighted to listen to Madam Rajavi. It is encapsulated in this Ten-Point platform for free Iran, gaining global leaders and policymakers around the world.”

Lord Whitty, a member of the House of Lords also said, “The rest of the world has to take account of what has been said, namely that the problems in the Middle East at the moment are largely those of interference and involvement of the Iranian regime in supporting and arming and encouraging, and even is according to many reports, directing the activities of Hezbollah, of Hamas, of Houthi in Yemen and so forth, bringing horrific problems to those countries particularly at the moment to those inhabitants of Gaza. And that is an international crime as well as a national crime. But the source of this rests in Tehran itself, with the regime’s own leaders.

“And I hope that the British government and the European governments make it clear that they need to proscribe the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization, as the main instrument of the regime’s repression and terrorism and indeed of its continued attempt at establishing a nuclear program.

“The regime leaders must face justice for the internal genocide and crimes against humanity that they have perpetrated over the last few decades. We must recognize the struggle of the Iranian people to overthrow the regime, to support the Iranian Resistance and in particular Mrs. Rajavi’s plan because that is in line with our democratic values.”

In her speech to the conference, Baroness Meacher, a member of the UK House of Lords, criticized the UK government for not taking decisive action against Tehran stating, “We have not declared the Iranian regime a terrorist organization. We desperately need to get on with that as a matter of urgency for all sorts of reasons but in part to support the incredibly brave Madam Rajavi. I think she’s an extraordinary leader of the opposition in Iran… It does seem that we all ought to be uniting to introduce sanctions against that regime. How can we carry on dealing with them?”

Baroness Eaton, a member of the UK House of Lords, expressed concern about the situation in Iran, particularly regarding executions. She emphasized the need for support for a democratic country rather than military intervention from the West and urged putting pressure on the British government to take action against the Iranian regime, which is a terrorist regime with damaging effects not only in Iran but across the Middle East.

MP Martyn Day, member of the House of Commons, expressed agreement with previous speakers, highlighting the unity in their positions. He voiced concern about the global impact of the Iranian regime and emphasized the need to sever ties and take a strong stand against the terrorist state. MP Day wished success to the Iranian people, particularly those engaged in resistance to a secular and democratic Iran. He committed to being a supportive voice for their cause.

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