Leading Iranian opposition coalition, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) U.S. Representative Office issued a new book on Thursday warning against any measures intended to take the Iranian regime’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) off the U.S. State Department’s Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) list, adding such a measure will “heighten terrorism and mayhem” across the Middle East.
There are growing concerns that the Biden administration is weighing such a move during the ongoing nuclear talks in Vienna focusing on the regime’s controversial nuclear program and reaching a weaker 2022 version of the already highly flawed 2015 nuclear deal.
“A potential IRGC exclusion from the FTO list and taking these individuals off the terror blacklist, as requested by Iran’s ruling theocracy, will no doubt heighten terrorism and mayhem in the region,” the NCRI U.S. Office report released Thursday said.
'#IRAN: Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), The Machinery of Terrorism – Why Tehran Wants the IRGC Off US Terror List'
NCRI-US' report, released today, makes the case why IRGC belongs to the #FTO list & why Tehran persistently demands its removal.https://t.co/cENN74Ha2P pic.twitter.com/DuJ7szXuDf
— NCRI-U.S. Rep Office (@NCRIUS) March 10, 2022
The mullahs’ regime has been demanding the removal of the FTO designation imposed on the IRGC by the Trump administration back in 2019 during the Vienna talks.
The report by the NCRI, a coalition struggling for a secular, democratic, and non-nuclear Iran, emphasizes that the FTO designation “handicapped many of the IRGC-related foreign financial transactions.”
The report details the IRGC’s involvement in military and terrorist operations in other countries throughout the region via its vast network of terrorist groups and proxies, and the training of foreign mercenaries in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. This recent release supports the NCRI’s previous reports about the IRGC’s use of drones and naval proxies.
“The IRGC’s involvement in research & development of weapons of mass destruction, ceaseless terrorist activities to foment mayhem, destruction, and instability across the Middle East, its financial empire to fund its nefarious activities inside Iran and abroad, make this terror outfit a serious global threat,” the report adds.
Iranian dissidents warn that removing IRGC's terror designation will lead to ‘terrorism and mayhem’https://t.co/eK7lLxIAjq
— Fox News (@FoxNews) March 10, 2022
The new NCRI also outlines how the IRGC is used against the Iranian people as the main branch of the regime’s expansive domestic crackdown machine. This is particularly important following uprisings during the past few years by protesters who have taken the streets in uprisings that have shaken the regime’s very pillars of power.
The NCRI emphasizes that the outreach and JCPOA talks by the U.S. and its allies continue to embolden the regime to further its hallmark terrorist activities.
“The continued offers of concessions by Western countries and lack of accountability for the regime’s terrorism, have emboldened Tehran to step up its terrorism in the region,” said Alireza Jafarzadeh, deputy director of the NCRI’s Washington office, to Fox News’ Adam Shaw with the release of the report.
Any initiative to lift the IRGC’s FTO designation would be “counterproductive at best,” Jafarzadeh warned.
Told @FoxNews that kowtowing to #Iran regime's demands to lift IRGC terror designation would be counterproductive, because "Instead of holding the regime accountable for its stepped-up terrorism, the West would be rewarding terrorism, leading to even more violence." #IranTalks https://t.co/yVC69Edz1S
— Alireza Jafarzadeh (@A_Jafarzadeh) March 10, 2022
“Instead of holding the regime accountable for its stepped-up terrorism, the West would be rewarding terrorism, leading to even more violence,” he highlighted, arguing instead that in fact, more sanctions are necessary due to the regime’s ongoing terrorist campaign across the Middle East.
Concerns over an FTO removal are also circulating among members of Congress. A bipartisan group of 21 House members, including 11 Democrats, wrote to U.S. President Joe Biden recently voicing concern that a new Iran deal may not be tough enough.
“Among other issues, we are highly concerned about reports indicating the potential lifting of the Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) designation of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and of the sanctions placed on members of the office of the Supreme Leader,” the letter reads.
The NCRI report was released two days after the IRGC launched a second reconnaissance satellite into space, raising further concerns and eyebrows over the regime’s use of a space program as a cover to advance their ballistic missile arsenal.
Dissident group to Biden: Trump was right to list Iran’s IRGC as terrorist organization – https://t.co/xjkyaY2Sqg
— The Washington Times (@WashTimes) March 10, 2022
Read NCRI report here:Iran-IRGC-The-Machinery-of-Terrorism-14March2022