European NGOs gather on the eve of European summit in solidarity with the Iranian people

After a series of actions, Europe decided to impose new sanctions on Iran. (Photo Igor Pliner)

After a series of actions, Europe decided to impose new sanctions on Iran. (Photo Igor Pliner)

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM, December 13, 2022 / -- The persecution carried out by the Iranian government was the topic of discussion during a rally that took place in the political epicenter of Europe on the 13th of December, 2022. The demonstration was a huge political success because in the meantime, on the occasion of this demonstration, a letter was also handed to Josep Borell, the high representative of the European Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and another letter was handed to the President of the European Parliament. Both of these letters were handed on the occasion of the European Summit that will take place at the same spot in the European capital Brussels on December 14th 2022 in which the decision to impose sanctions on Iran will be finalized. These sanctions are being imposed for a number of reasons, including Iran's assistance to Russia during its genocide against the Ukrainian people as well as Iran's ongoing violations of human rights.

The speech introduced by Manel Msalmi, the head of the European Association for the Defense of Minorities stresses the fact that "The Iranian dictatorship carried out its second execution despite worldwide indignation and in defiance of it." The Iranian government hanged a second demonstrator in connection with the country's almost three-month-old protest movement on Monday, despite worldwide condemnation of its use of this mode of punishment. Following the murder of a teenage Kurdish-Iranian Mahsa Amini, who was imprisoned by the Islamic Republic's morality police, the Iranian people have been protesting for around three months. These demonstrations represent the greatest threat to the Iranian government since the fall of the Shah's regime in 1979. They were confronted with violence and repression. In Tehran, women fought the morality police yesterday and threw them off a bus. "We remove our headscarves daily and do not tolerate morality police harassment. We will stop the system of inequality between the sexes ". Dozens of women in the provincial capital of Zahedan hoist banners that proclaim "Woman, Life, Freedom," one of the most famous slogans of the protest. It is the first time that women and minorities, who have been regarded as second-class citizens for the last four decades, have taken to the streets together to demand their fundamental rights. In addition to the president of the Liberal women in Brussels and president of the European Association for the Defense of Minorities Manel Msalmi, many dignitaries were present. Carlo Van Grootel (editor in chief of the Liberal world and political advisor for Open VLD, Belgian Liberal Party), Serge De Patoul ,honorary Belgian deputy, Baharak Bashar, Kurdish author and human rights defender, Paulo Casaca, former Mep and founder of South Asia forum, Nigel Goodrich ,CEO of IMPAC, Mehdi Nobari ,president of the Iranian International Human Rights organisation in Belgium and Andy Vermaut, president of the World Council for Public Diplomacy and Community Dialogue.

A potential game changer
Former member of the European Parliament Paulo Casaca stated that :‘Iranians have challenged their own repressive forces before, but this time they are doing it in a massive, continuous, national way – despite bullets, despite hundreds fatalities and tens of thousands arrests – in their call for a democratic, republican form of government. Iranian authorities have repeatedly attacked Iraqi Kurdistan, targeting Iranian Kurdish refugees in Erbil and Sulaymaniah. The repression has been particularly violent in both Kurdistan and Baluchistan, where authorities have committed indiscriminate killings of civilians.In spite of the repression and the repeated assurances by the officials in charge that they were able to quash popular discontent – the last one to date by Khamenei on November the 22nd – Iranians from the all social and ethnic spectrums continue to show their will to reverse the dictatorship.The Western establishment has severe difficulties in understanding these toxic polarisation tactics which allow the enemy to play simultaneously on both sides of the conflict. Otherwise, if the high maturity level shown by the Iranian people in the present revolution is accompanied by a responsible and knowledgeable stance by Western countries, there are real chances to see democracy established in Iran. The consequences of such a development in the region and in the world at large can hardly be overstated.”

People in danger
Andy Vermaut, president of the World Council for Public Diplomacy and Community Dialogue said that:”We all know why we are here, Women, children and people who are peaceful and don't do anything wrong are targeted by the Iranian government. It makes me really sad to see that so many children and young people are dying. Iran has been doing bad things and making trouble in the Middle East and all over the world since 1979. Iran is the biggest supporter of terrorism in the world, and its efforts to make nuclear weapons put the rest of the world in danger.The cruel state terrorists who work for the Iranian government need to stop putting the lives of ordinary Iranians in danger. Iran also keeps teaching terrorist groups like Hezbollah how to attack civilian targets with terrorist attacks. The Iranian dictatorship also makes the terrible civil wars in the region worse. We should all work together to stop President Ebrahim Raisi. We need to throw him out. So, stopping Ebrahim Raisi could send a strong message to all Iranian state terrorists: If you care about your life, you won't put the lives of your people in danger.As Europe decides what to do about Iran's attacks on its own people, the European Union should put the IRGC on the European terrorist list.

Today, everyone wants the European Union to get much more involved in the peace process in the Middle East so that the fighting in Iran stops. Respect for women, life, and freedom is what Iranians aspire to see in a future government .Iran should never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon because of how they treat their own people and how they export terrorism to peaceful countries. I am ready to join the revolution of all Iranians who want to live in peace in a secular nation where all minorities can live together.”

International Human Rights Organisation
Mehdi Nobari ,president of the Iranian International Human Rights organisation in Belgium mentioned that:"For more than 40 years, the ayatollah's theocratic regime has continued to violate the rights of children, women, ethnic minorities, etc. in an appalling manner. Among the more than 700 victims of the Iranian uprising during the current 3 months, there are 60 of minor children. Sarina Ismailzadeh was a 16-year-old aspiring YouTuber. Nika Shakarami is another victim of the regime's barbarity. Nima Shafaghdoust, a 16 year old boy. Dozens of children were violently massacred on Friday September 30 in Zahedan by the Revolutionary Guards in southeastern Iran. These children were returning home after Friday prayers. This Thursday, December 8, the prisoner of the uprising Mohsen Shekari, 23, was executed on the orders of Khamenei. This great crime will inflame the anger of the people and the insurgents, especially the youth. We strongly condemn the execution of Mohsen Shekari. In short, the regime's violent murder of minor children is not limited to the recent uprising. These recent killings come at the height of Iran's crisis of impunity.The current uprising is turning into a revolution. The international community must be on the right side of history. The only way to end the current impunity in Iran and the regime's human rights violations is to change the Ayatollah's regime, then recognize the Iranian people's right to resistance and legitimate self-defense. Any other solution would only allow the regime to continue killing innocent people, especially children, who aspire to change their future.”

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