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Dissidents Seeking Help

Laura Rozen, a senior correspondent, in part of her Washington Post article Iran on the Potomac, described several Iranian dissidents who are pressing Washington, seeking help in fostering regime change back home. The only problem, as she says, is that the exiles can’t agree on a strategy. Among all the opposition, there can be found no equivalent to the Iraqi National Congress, and the exiles have yet to coalesce around a platform or leader.

Mojahedin Khalq Organization, MKO, is one of the exile groups that has advocates in Congress in spite of being blacklisted as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. Talking of Alireza Jafarzadeh, Washington spokesman for the MKO, Rozen describes Jafarzadeh as ‘The militant voice’:

"Alireza Jafarzadeh , 49, is the longtime Washington spokesman for the National Council of the Resistance of Iran, the political wing of the Mujaheddin-e Khalq, an anti-regime militant group supported for years by Saddam Hussein. MEK has been on the State Department’s list of terrorist organizations since 1997. In 2002, Jafarzadeh and the group announced details of Iran’s previously unknown nuclear program. With NCRI’s Washington office shut down since 2003, Jafarzadeh has reinvented himself as an expert commentator on Iran’s nuclear program. The MEK is reviled by Iran but it has support from the Iran Policy Committee, a group of conservative retired U.S. military officers and Reagan-era officials, who say Washington should work with the MEK to overthrow the Tehran regime."

Washington Post, June 25, 2006

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