OIAC IS A PROUD SPONSOR OF 2017 ANNUAL IRAN FREEDOM RALLY FOR #FREEIRAN
Organization of Iranian American Communities
Iran- Human Rights (Women, Minorities, Ethnics)
Iran between presidential elections, support of terrorism The Axis
Watch the Interview- Clip
interview with Dr. Majid Sadeghpour Political Director of OIAC,
Organization of Iranian American Communities.
A resolution recently introduced in the US House of Representatives condemned an atrocity that most Americans, indeed most Westerners, have never heard of: The 1988 killings of approximately 30,000 political prisoners in Iran.
Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle chose to try to right that wrong by introducing Resolution 188, which deplores the murder of victims who “included thousands of people, including teenagers and pregnant women, imprisoned merely for participating in peaceful street protests and for possessing political reading material, many of whom had already served or were currently serving prison sentences.”
Thirty prisoners in Zabol Central Prison are reportedly in imminent danger of execution after their death sentences were confirmed by Iran’s Supreme Court.
Zabol, located in the province of Sistan & Baluchestan, is one of the poorest cities in Iran. Zabol Central Prison is located in the southern part of the city and hundreds of prisoners are held here.
There are multiple worrying reports from the prison of the ill-treatment of prisoners by the prison officials, frequent water outages, overcrowdedness, lack of air conditioning, and poor-quality and lack of food. On May 16, 2017, a prisoner by the name of Ramezan Koohkan reportedly died in Zabol Central Prison after receiving rough treatment by the head of prison security and suffering a concussion.
“About 80% of the prisoners in this prison are Sunni, but all the prison guards and authorities are Shia. This has caused numerous problems in the prison,” a prisoner in Zabol Central Prison tells Iran Human Rights.
About 60% of the prisoners in Zabol Central Prison are held on drug related charges, and many of them are on death row. At the current time, the death sentences of 30 prisoners in this prison have been confirmed by the Supreme Court. These prisoners are on death row for various charges, including murder, drug trafficking, or kidnapping. According to unconfirmed reports, three of these prisoners were under the age of 18 at the time of their arrest. The 30 prisoners may be executed at any moment.
A cabinet minister appointed by centrist President Hassan Rouhani has admitted that the Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Technology filtered “seven million” websites during Rouhani’s first term (2013-17).
“In the past three years, we have closed seven million (web) addresses reported to us from authoritative agencies and blocked 121,000 important software and filter breakers,” said Minister of Communication and Technology Mahmoud Vaezi during an open session of Parliament on June 6, 2017.
The minister also claimed that websites and online services considered to be problematic by the state were reduced from eight percent to 1.5 percent by automated “smart filtering” methods.
Smart filtering in Iran refers to the selective blocking of content within a website, as opposed to the complete blocking or shutting down of an entire website.
The terror attacks in Iran earlier this week have been largely criticised throughout the world, but the Iranian Regime cannot pretend that it is a “victim” of terrorism, according to a political analyst and expert.
Paulo Casaca, founder and executive director of the Brussels-based South Asia Democratic Forum (SADF), told DW in an interview on Thursday, June 8, that the Iranian Regime, who are the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world, should expect to effectively reap what they sow.
Casaca, who was a Portuguese member of the European Parliament from 1999 to 2009, said: “Iran has a long tradition of supporting terrorist groups not necessarily aligned with the Shiite sect of Islam, for instance Al Qaeda, Hamas or the Taliban. Still, as it happens with other states that support jihadi groups, Iran cannot stop its own creations from turning against it.” The attacks, on the Iranian Parliament and at a shrine to the former Supreme Leader, were apparently committed by Iranian citizens on behalf of the so-called Islamic State.
To get their news and entertainment, many people in the world turn to the sky, especially in oppressive regimes.
In places like China, Cuba and Iran, satellite receivers and dishes are illegal. Police even conduct regular raids of homes suspected of using satellite, still people’s thirst for freedom of information persists. In a story from last year about Iran destroying 100,000 siezed satellite dishes and receivers, Al Jazeera reported:
Iranian police regularly raid neighbourhoods and confiscate dishes from rooftops, and under Iranian law, satellite equipment is banned and those who distribute, use, or repair them can be fined up to $2,800…
“This means that 70 percent of Iranians violate the law” by owning satellite dishes.
Since the early days of the Islamic Revolution, Iran’s prisons and legal systems have been frequently used by the regime as a method to eradicate all its outspoken political opponents, as well as to instil terror into the population.
At the time of the 1988 massacre, many of those being hung, had been held in custody for several years, suffering under a horrific regime of torture and abuse. The majority of those held were one-time political allies of Khomeini that had turned against him, after realizing he was replacing one violent dictatorship with another. Others were those deemed by their accusers to be a threat to the fledgling regime, due to their popularity amongst the Iranian people.
Countless numbers of these political prisoners had been incarcerated for organizing street demonstrations against Khomeini’s rule, or had spoken openly condemning it. While many others had committed no crime at all, except for having taken part in street demonstrations.
‘Sowing corruption on earth’
Having been convicted by revolutionary courts on charges as vague as “sowing corruption on earth” or “crimes against the Revolution”, all had been convicted without access to a lawyer, because whatever the outcome of any interrogation, their fate had been sealed anyway.
Quote of the Week
Iran- Terrorism Activities (Middle-East)
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representatives Peter J. Roskam (R-IL) and Ted Deutch (D-FL) sent a letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense James Mattis urging them to take all necessary action to prevent Iran from establishing a permanent military presence in Syria.
In the letter, the lawmakers wrote:
“The Islamic Republic seeks to solidify its access to the Mediterranean Sea by building a permanent seaport and constructing numerous military installations throughout the country. A permanent Iranian military presence in Syria would greatly harm U.S. interests in the region and decrease the likelihood of reaching a political agreement to end the Syrian civil war.”
Iran’s government has a clear aim which is creating a reality that suits it and that imposes itself when deciding Syria’s fate and that expands its role in Iraq later. To achieve this aim, it is leading Iraqi militias, other militias it had established and groups which it influences in Iraq towards Syria to engage in major battles and control border crossings in Damascus and vital areas. This means the conflict will prolong for years and regional countries will be pushed to support other groups that oppose Iran. This will produce ISIS again and thwart the war on terrorism.
The Tehran regime uses different excuses to justify its project, such as fighting terror groups and protecting the Iraqi borders. However, Iran is mapping its areas of control, controlling border crossings in Syria and trying to impose its presence on most of the 300 kilometers, and then cross with the Iraqi militias to Syrian territories.
Donald Trump embarked on his first trip overseas as President on May 19th. Destination, Saudi Arabia, of all places. After all the controversy about campaign rhetoric regarding Islam and his executive orders on travelers from Middle Eastern countries, his choice of what he called “the heart of the Muslim World’ as his first stop on his first trip came as quite a surprise to many.
Even more unexpected were the “yes” responses by more than 50 Muslim heads of state to attend the Arab Islamic American Summit on May 21st.
The timing, place and reception of the American president’s remarks at the Summit really should have come as no surprise. They reflect the shared goal of western and Muslim nations of “a coalition of nations who share the aim of stamping out extremism.” And in that context, in comments long overdue for their clarity and lucidity, the American president called out the world’s number-one state sponsor of terrorism: Iran.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the recent attacks in Iran, but it’s important to consider history before offering sympathy to the Iranian regime.
For the first time on June 7th ISIS claimed responsibility for staging an attack in Iran, involving a twin assault on two sites in Tehran, the capital. This terrorist attack left 17 killed and dozens of others wounded in the parliament and the tomb of former Iranian regime leader Ruhollah Khomeini.
Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, condemned the shedding of innocent people’s blood under any pretext.
“ISIS’s conduct clearly benefits the Iranian regime’s Supreme Leader Khamenei, who wholeheartedly welcomes it as an opportunity to overcome his regime’s regional and international impasse and isolation. The founder and the number one state sponsor of terror is thus trying to switch the place of murderer and the victim and portray the central banker of terrorism as a victim,” Mrs. Rajavi added.
How Iran’s Mullahs Welcome The ISIS Attack, is the title of an article by Heshmat Alavi, first appeared in Forbes.com, the following is the full text.
A total of six assailants armed with AK47 rifles and explosive vests launched two simultaneous attacks in Tehran targeting two heavily secured sites in the Iranian capital Wednesday morning.
The unexpected twin assault left 17 killed and dozens more wounded in Iran’s parliament and the mausoleum of former Iranian regime leader Ruhollah Khomeini located south of the capital.
“Islamic State claimed responsibility and released a video purporting to show gunmen inside the parliament building and one body, apparently dead, on the floor,” according to Reuters in a wire from inside Iran.
The attackers, disguised as women, apparently were able to find their way in the parliament through the main entrance, the semi-official Tasnim news agency cited Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Hossein Zolfaghari. Four hours into the entire rampage Iranian state media reported the incident over with all six assailants dead.
Anyone who understands and has followed the character of Iran’s political establishment for decades knows that Saudi King Salman’s recent speech articulately laid out critical truths about Iran’s government.
The first issue is linked to its role in spreading terrorism. Several US State Department reports indicate that Iran is the top state sponsor of terrorism. In addition, based on my research at Harvard, Tehran directly or indirectly supports roughly 40 percent of the world’s designated terrorist groups.
This includes financial, military, advisory and political assistance. Iran’s major organization that establishes and backs militia groups across the region is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), and its affiliate branches such as the Quds Force led by Qassem Soleimani.
Iran- Nuclear Activities
David Asher, who previously served as an adviser to Gen. John Allen at the Defense and State Departments, told the House Foreign Affairs Committee Thursday that top officials across several key law enforcement and intelligence agencies in the Obama administration “systematically disbanded” law enforcement activities targeting the terrorism financing operations of Iran, Hezbollah, and Venezuela in the lead-up to and during the nuclear negotiations with Tehran.
“Senior leadership, presiding, directing, and overseeing various sections [of these agencies] and portions of the U.S. intelligence community systematically disbanded any internal or external stakeholder action that threatened to derail the administration’s policy agenda focused on Iran,” he testified.
London – Iranian government spokesman Mohammad Bagher Nobakht said on Tuesday that his country’s policy on developing the national ballistic missiles program is not negotiable.
Nobakht’s commentary was delivered following a neat roll back on anti-ballistic-missile-program sentiment by Iran’s re-elected ‘moderate’ President Hassan Rouhani.
“The Iranian nation has decided to be powerful. Our missiles are for peace and for defense … American officials should know that whenever we need to technically test a missile, we will do so and will not wait for their permission,” Rouhani said in a news conference, broadcast live on state TV.
Second Deputy of the Parliament Ali Motahari urged the quick formation of a qualified administration that would include popular personalities like Tehran Mayor Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf.
Motahari’s suggestions come amid talks on replacing the current conservative parliament chairman Ali Larijani.