NIAC’s pro-Tehran campaign

August 1, 2012

The National Iranian American Council (NIAC) has launched a vast campaign to keep the Mojahedin -e- Khalgh (MEK) in the list of State Department designated foreign terrorist organizations. NIAC’s president, Trita Parsi, personally leads this campaign. Sending newsletter, fund raising, holding seminars in DC and circulating petitions against MEK have become NIAC and Parsi’s main activities. In April 2011, the Iraqi forces attacked the MEK refugee camp Ashraf in Iraq and killed 36 and injured more than 300 unarmed residents. The attack prompted a wave of sympathy around the world and as a result, the human rights organizations intensified their efforts to rescue Ashraf residents and prevent future massacre. A main obstacle to find a new home for Iranian refugees has been the US listing of MEK as a terrorist organization. At the same time, the Iranian regime and its advocates are working hard to block a resolution to this humanitarian impasse. They are simultaneously working on several fronts: pushing the Iraqi government to invade the camp, threatening European countries that would accept Ashraf’s resident and most importantly, lobbying in Washington to ensure that the MEK remains on the black list. This campaign is carried out by NIAC. Founded in 2002, National Iranian American Council (NIAC) and its president Trita Parsi have been leading the advocacy efforts in Washington for a friendlier policy toward the Iranian regime. The government press in Tehran called NIAC the “Iranian lobby in US”. One of the prominent leaders of the Green movement Mohsen Makhmalbaf told Washington Times that: “I think Trita Parsi does not belong to the Green Movement. I feel his lobbying has secretly been more for the Islamic Republic.” The Iranian community has been very critical toward NIAC mainly because of its friendly attitude toward the Clerical regime. In response to its critics, NIAC launched an intimidation campaign and filed a lawsuit against one of them, Hassan Dai, an Arizona based investigative journalist who has published many reports and articles disclosing NIAC’s lobbying efforts for IRI. The discovery process was very damaging to NIAC president as NIAC’s internal documents showed his intimate relation with Iranian ambassador at UN and Parsi’s “secret diplomacy” acting as Ahmadinejad’s ambassador at large. These documents show that Parsi collaborated with people inside Iran to launch and advanced his lobby in US. These people work with Iranian government. In November 2009, Washington Times published part of these discovery documents that led to an official letter by Senator John Kyl to Attorney General requesting an investigation into NIAC’s lobby in favor of the Iranian regime. NIAC’s campaign against MEK has also a broader impact on Iranian democratic movement that struggles to oust the Iranian regime. NIAC and its allies have for so long preached coexistence with the regime and Parsi asked the US to share the Middle East with Iranian dictators. Since the start of the Iranian uprising in 2009 and because the regime’s chance of survival have significantly vanished, NIAC and its Washington supporters try to isolate the opposition groups to ensure that the regime’s factions keep the upper hand in case a new popular uprising erupts in Iran. The Green Party of Iran strongly condemns NIAC’s campaign against the Iranian opposition groups in favor of Tehran’s regime. One more time, we emphasize that placing MEK in the US designated terrorist list, was a wrong gesture by President Clinton to appease the Mullahs. As the policy of appeasement has been proved wrong, the MEK should be delisted and then, Tehran’s advocates on top of them NIAC should be included in the black list.

The Green Party of Iran

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