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Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 147

++ Over ninety percent of the MEK’s websites and outlets have been promoting Daesh’s cause. Now that Daesh is being pushed back by Syrian and Iraqi armed forces, the MEK and Saudi media have come out strongly against the Syrian and Iraqi and Russian governments with unsubstantiated allegations of murders and mistreatment of civilians. One such item is interesting because it accuses the Iraqi army of destroying a Sunni mosque. The photograph used, however, is from several years ago and actually shows Daesh destroying a Shia mosque. Farsi commentators say this is not surprising since the Saddamists, Daesh and the MEK are losing their footholds in Iraq. These anti-Iran forces are so much on overdrive that they gleefully celebrate the death of an Iranian pilot when his jet fighter accidentally crashed during a training exercise inside Iran.

++ Several open letters have been addressed to the French Interior Ministry expressing disgust that the French government allows the MEK to publicly celebrate their ‘armed struggle’ which killed thousands of Iranian and Iraqi civilians while the French people are cowed and restricted by ‘the terrorist threat’.

++ To mark the start of the month of Ramazan, a few former MEK members wrote their experience of Ramazan inside the group. They reveal that at the start of the MEK, fasting was observed as a religious obligation. Later on, when Rajavi took control, they were ordered to make a show of it for the outside world, but to give their allegiance to Rajavi rather than to their religion.

++ German language Duetch Welle published an article about fears over the MEK arriving in Europe. In the article, experts say that European countries must deal with this issue properly or it will add to the terrorism threat inside Europe. In Albania, Agenzia Nova newspaper revealed that arrangements have been agreed for the remaining 1,900 residents of Camp Liberty in Iraq to be transferred to Tirana before the end of the year.

++ Farzad Farzinfar, a former MEK member, died in Sweden this week. Many who expressed their condolences also wrote their memories of him. After leaving the MEK, Farzinfar spent a difficult time in Ramardi camp at the time of Saddam before getting out of Iraq. He was one of the first members to be able to escape Iraq and talk outside that country about the realities inside the MEK at a time when the MEK had the full support of Western governments and Saddam himself. People write that although he suffered greatly he always tried to help others rather than complain about his own situation.

++ Maryam Sanjabi, a former member of the MEK’s all women Leadership Council, was interviewed by Neda-ye Haghighat website. The MEK tried hard to demonise and discredit Sanjabi after the recent publication of her book. In the interview Sanjabi exposes evidence of Saudi support and payments for the MEK at the time of Saddam. She talks in detail about Massoud Rajavi’s clandestine visit to Saudi Arabia ostensibly for Haj which the MEK later were forced to admit to. After that, after the First Gulf War, Rajavi received three lorry loads of gold bars and jewellery which was brought to Iraq from Saudi Arabia. The MEK took it bit by bit to Jordan and sold it there. At that time Malek Abdullah was Crown Prince and he was in charge of the MEK and Saddamists. He gave his support for these financial transactions. Sanjabi explains further that Daesh is not a new phenomenon but is a continuation of this coalition of forces.

In English:

++ Mazda Parsi writes an interesting article for Nejat Society based on evidence from the Walk Free Foundation about modern slavery in the world. Parsi uses the Foundation’s evidence and information about slavery to demonstrate that MEK members are being held in a state of modern slavery, including conditions of forced labour, incarceration and secrecy and sexual exploitation.

++ Several people have written to support Mr Gholamreza Shirdam in his hunger strike in Turkey. He complains that after seven years his application for asylum has still not been assessed by the UNHCR. He believes this is because he is a former member of the MEK.

June 11, 2016

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