Key Iran government dissenter tells Europe that Tehran terrorism's 'epicenter'

“The head of the snake is in Tehran, the epicenter of terrorism and warmongering,” said MEK's Maryam Rajavi

Published: November 27, 2023 5:41am

Maryam Rajavi, the leader of the largest international Iranian dissident organization, told members of the European Parliament this week that Iran remains the "epicenter" of terrorism.

“The head of the snake is in Tehran, the epicenter of terrorism and warmongering,” said Rajavi, the leader of the People's Mujahedin Organization of Iran.

Rajavi’s remarks came a day after police in Spain arrested three people in connection with the Nov. 9 shooting of politician Alejando Vidal-Quadras in Madrid. 

Vidal-Quadras, who was shot in the face, is one of the founders of the Spanish rightwing political party Vox.

He had been sanctioned by the government in Tehran in part due to his ties with the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, or MEK, and though the arrested suspects were European there is speculation they could have ties to Iranian leader Ali Khamenei. 

Iran’s strong opposition to MEK is reportedly part of a global effort to assert geopolitical influence, including in the Joe Biden White House, in connection with the U.S. government’s policies toward the Islamic Republic. 

“The Iranian regime does not want to find a balance of power between us, it wants to wipe us off the face of the Earth,” Vidal-Quadras wrote Wednesday from the hospital. “As long as we do not understand and accept this terrible truth we will fail, and we will be defeated.”

In her address Wednesday to Parliament, Rajavi, who is head of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), praised Vidal-Quadras for his stance against Iran. MEK is the NCRI’s militant wing.

“I was deeply touched by Mr. Vidal-Quadras’s courageous and inspiring message,” Rajavi said. “As always, [he has been] resilient and steadfast in his support for the cause of freedom in Iran with an exceptionally high morale.”

Rajavi’s comments took place at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, and it was attended many members of the European Parliament as well as various other leading European political figures including former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt, former former Polish Foreign Minister Anna Fotyga, and Former German Defense Minister of Franz Josef Jung, all of whom addressed the gathering. All told, more than 200 people were in attendance at the event. 

Rajavi made the case that the war between Russia and Ukraine, the clashes between Israel and Hamas, and other global conflicts are made by the role Iran plays in directly and indirectly supporting Russia and Hamas. 

Rajavi’s appearance in Strasbourg comes five months after the return of the Free Iran Conference at Paris’s Place de Vauban, the first meeting in the French capital after a five year absence. 

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