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Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 9

++ In an interview with (Farsi language) Andisheh TV in America, Iraj Mesdaghi challenged Massoud Rajavi to a debate and said, ‘Many times you have asked your enemies to debate with you, like at the start of the revolution when you asked Ayatollah Beheshti. Why not us, are we, your friends, less important for you than him?’

++ Ismael Vafa Yaghmai remembered Mehdi Eftekhari in his weblog. Eftekhari was the MEK commander who brought Massoud Rajavi to Paris. He rejected Rajavi’s Ideological Revolution and was under severe pressure for years. He died a couple of years ago and Yaghmai commiserated that he was such a good person, but was so badly treated by his own organisation.

++ Former MEK member Mohammad Razaghi wrote from his hospital bed in France to remind Karim Ghassim that before leaving the MEK he had tried not to listen to the ex-members’ claims. He lists their sufferings and concludes by observing that the consciences of people inside the MEK are now awakening one by one and that he welcomes this development.

++ In a meeting with UNAMI chief Martin Kobler, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki asked him again to expedite the MEK’s expulsion from Iraq.

++ Massoud Khodabandeh writes in Iranian.com that the election of a new Iranian President is bad news for those who want war with Iran, including the MEK. But the MEK’s internal crises are far more dangerous to the group than any external situation. He predicts the group will implode soon due to growing internal dissent.

++ After the successful transfer of a fourth group of residents, the UN and US Department of State both issued statements welcoming the transfer of a total of 71 MEK residents from Camp Liberty in Iraq to Albania as refugees. Both urged the MEK to cooperate with the process.

++ Martin Kobler in an interview with the Associated Press cited concerns about what he called “human rights abuses inside Camp Liberty done by the MEK themselves.

”Residents are not free to move between different sections of the camp without approval, and some are denied Internet and mobile phone access by MEK officials, he said. Medical treatment outside is also often blocked by the group, he alleged.

“There are, of course, MEK residents who probably would like to disassociate themselves from the MEK,” he said. “Everybody who wants to go out of the camp … should have the chance to do so.”

The MEK denied the allegations saying “Kobler has never been an impartial person and does not represent the values of the U.N.”

++ Jamil Bassam from Nejat Association in Iran writes about 21 June 1981 and the start of the MEK’s armed struggle. He recounted his years with the MEK before and after this event and says the only person who should answer for this day is Rajavi himself.

++ A group of former MEK members held a picket at the Trocadero in Paris on June 22 to protest and inform about Maryam Rajavi’s meeting in Villepinte on the same day. Media reporters interviewed several of the participants. A statement accompanying the picket stressed that the captives in Camp Liberty must be helped soon before they all die.

++ Many articles in Farsi criticise Rajavi for swearing and shaking over the election in Iran of Rohani and how their violent nature is threatened by the possibility of peaceful means and negotiations. Villepinte was deemed a failure as it attracted only bad publicity so that even with paid advertisements the MEK couldn’t get anything positive out of it. In her speech Rajavi claimed that voter turnout in Iran was extremely low and that the election was a sham.

++ Anjoman Yaaran in Paris visited Villepinte the day before Rajavi’s event and distributed over 5000 leaflets. As a result, some individuals who were going to attend without any knowledge of what the event was about, changed their minds.

++ Mohammad Karami and Nader Naderi were guests of Mardom TV this week. They recounted what they knew of people being killed in the MEK, of suspicious deaths, and they talked about the issue of people running away from Liberty, with 18 new people managing to escape last week. They also discussed Maryam Rajavi’s show on 22 June and the resignation of members of the NCRI and what it means for the MEK.

++ Iran Farnous in Germany have analysed the MEK’s recent past in an article titled ‘Many Defeats and No Victory’. It especially refers to the defeat of their lobbying efforts, particularly the latest one in Villepinte which attracted bad publicity for Rajavi.

++Homayoun Kohzadi’s article titled ‘Has the Rajavi Cult Given up Terror and Violence?’ refers to acts of violence committed by the MEK since being removed from Western terrorism lists.

++ Many ex-members have written to the Czech ambassador in Paris. Maryam Rajavi is trying to engineer an invitation to visit the parliament there through her lobbyists. The writers say it is obvious to everyone that the aim is to try to stop any rapprochement with new government in Iran. Rajavi believes any backlash will bring her name up which will act as publicity. Nader Naderi compared Rajavi with Hitler and Bin Laden and said ‘letting her come and misuse your government buildings and institutions would be like letting them in and would be a great discredit to the Czech Republic’.

++ In an article titled ‘Camp Liberty residents’ questions go unanswered’ Sahar Family Foundation in Baghdad reports what is going on inside the camp. The article covers Rajavi’s erroneous analyses and calculations in relation to the Iranian election. It then goes on to reveal how the resignation of two NCRI members caught the MEK leaders off guard so they issued contradictory explanations. The article says, ‘The Rajavi cult is also trying to link the replacement of Mr Martin Kobler, the Special Representative of the UN General Secretary to Iraq, to their hostile efforts against him and show it as a victory gained by them.’ And finally, ‘The other news is that cult officials inside Camp Liberty try to pretend that those who were sent to Albania did not wish to go and they had to force them to do so. They do this to discourage people from volunteering to leave the camp so that the leaders can pre-select the people they choose to allow to go.’

++ Ghassim and Rohani have published a joint article criticising Rajavi for attacking them and presenting their case as though they are in a court but without accusation or evidence. The title is, ‘Our Resignation Is Their Test Not Ours’.

++After years of trying to find and rescue her son from the MEK’s Iraqi camps, Mrs Abdulahi has started a new blog. In it she explains how her son Amir Aslaan Hassanzadeh had gone to Turkey to find work but was deceived by MEK recruiters and taken to Iraq and never allowed out again.

++ Iran Ghalam quoted eye witnesses reports that an Afghani man named Najib who had gone to Villepinte for 70 Euros died outside the venue when be got extremely drunk and was knocked down and killed by a bus. His uncle is to claim compensation for his death from the organisers.

++ Esamail Yaghmai wrote another article criticising the MEK for character assassination emphasising that he should have the right to criticise without facing this backlash.

++ Ghader Rahamai writing in Nim Negah website criticises Yaghmai for trying to answer any old rubbish that Rajavi says against him. The title: ‘Dear Mr Yaghmai, you are neither a suspect, nor is Rajavi a judge’.

++ In his weblog, Iraj Shokri examines Massoud Rajavi’s recent announcements. He questions why they are all audio addresses and are never written; ‘they come one after another but are removed so no one can relate them to one another’. He refers to contradictions even in one speech; Rajavi attacks UN, ICRC and DoS officials while sending conciliatory audio messages to Rafsanjani and Khamenei.

Mohammad Karami published news about the 71 refugees in Albania. The MEK dispatched Farzaneh Meidan Shahi to pull them together stop them dispersing. She arranged a meeting in a hotel for them to come and eat and drink and watch Maryam Rajavi’s Villepinte show live. Only ten turned up. Karami says these 71 have gob smacked Rajavi twice – once by coming to Albania and once by rebuffing the MEK after they arrived.

++ Jamil Bassam describes Villepinte as the other side of the coin of Camp Liberty and says it is used to deflect public attention away from Liberty. As much as they put pressure on people in Liberty to be obedient, in Paris they have to pay people just to sit there as a fake audience. On one side is huge spending and extravagance and on the other side is misery and suffering and deprivation.

In an article for Pejvak Iran titled ‘MEK’s factory for manufacturing agents of the regime and how does it work’, Hanif Heydar Nejad explains the position they start from how they end up swearing at everyone and labelling people with the hope they remain quiet, but that apparently it is not working.

++ Iraj Mesdaghi wrote ‘The Unpublished Parts of my Report – an Open Letter to Rajavi’ for his website. He explains that in his first open letter he tried to self-censor but has now changed his mind because what he censored is relevant to Rajavi’s internet struggles and it needs to be made public. He goes on to explain in detail how the MEK misuse people, situations, falsify documents and information, etc.

++ Radio Free Europe published the amusing ‘Diary Of An MKO Rent-A-Crowd Demonstrator’ by Kyrgyz student Alina Alymkulova who recounts how she was recruited to travel from Prague to Paris to attend a rally for the MEK.

“I approached two Russian girls to see if they might have a better idea about the purpose of our trip. “To defend the rights of Iranian women,” said one of the girls. “To meet handsome Frenchmen,” said the other. “Who cares about Iranian women?””

++ In his weblog, Mohammad B. refers to the Kyrgyz student and quotes Rajavi’s reaction who claims this girl is an agent of the Iranian regime.

++ Anti-cult French youth have broadcast a video made clandestinely in Villepinte and ridiculed the MEK with film of invited foreigners who don’t speak Farsi or English.

++ Hamed Sarrafpour writes to commemorate Haft-e Tir (June 28, 1981) when the MEK blew up the Hezb-e Jomhouri Headquarters (Islamic Republic Party) killing seventy three leading officials of the newly established Islamic Republic. He recounts his personal involvement with the MEK at the time and how he was witness to them starting killing.

June 28 2013

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