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UK Parliamentarians Join Iranian Students to Discuss Uprising and University Role

In a session held at the House of Lords in the United Kingdom, members of both houses of Parliament and representatives from the Iranian student community residing in the country discussed the role of universities and Iranian students in the uprising for freedom and a democratic republic in Iran. Speakers at the session emphasized the stability and resilience demonstrated by the Iranian people, especially the youth and students, in their fight against the ruthless rulers in Iran, highlighting how universities have become vital centers for activism and resistance.

In her remarks, Baroness O’Loan, a member of the UK House of Lords, described Iran’s universities “as the epicenter for the establishment of a democratic republic,” sharing insights from her extensive academic background as well as a recent participation in the International Women’s Day Conference in Paris, organized by the National Council of Resistance of Iran.

Drawing from her experience as an academic and former chair of the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Baroness O’Loan highlighted the pivotal role of universities as hubs for activism and resistance, where ideas flourish and the seeds of change are sown. She also said, “I think the recent sham elections in Iran serve as a stark reminder of the regime’s desperation and its grip on power. The Iranian people have resoundingly rejected the regime’s attempts to legitimize itself. And that rejection is a testament to great courage and to the growing calls for change and for the establishment of a democratic republic in Iran.”

Baroness O’Loan reiterated her commitment to advocating for the prescription of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and endorsed Mrs. Maryam Rajavi’s Ten-Point Plan as a comprehensive vision for Iran’s future. She concluded by affirming solidarity with the Iranian people in their pursuit of a better tomorrow.

The Democratic Unionist Party’s (DUP) Member of Parliament, Jim Shannon, emphasized the interconnectedness of human rights and freedom of religion, asserting that both are essential components of a democratic society.

Reflecting on the recent sham elections in Iran, MP Shannon condemned the regime’s attempts to maintain power through rigged electoral processes. He applauded the Iranian people for rejecting the regime’s legitimacy and highlighted the need for solidarity in supporting their aspirations for a free and democratic Iran.

MP Shannon praised the resilience of Iranian women in leading the fight for justice and equality, acknowledging the systematic oppression they face under the regime. He also said, “Universities have emerged as vital centers of resistance, where students and faculty alike bravely confront the injustices of the regime, and demand a better future for themselves, or for future generations. I very much admire Mrs. Rajavi, because of the Ten-Point Plan that offers a very detailed, comprehensive road map for the establishment of a democratic republic in Iran, grounded in principles of democracy, of human rights, of social justice, of religious freedom, and supporters of the Iranian resistance movement.”

Concluding his remarks, the MP expressed his support for the PMOI-led Resistance Units and called for support the Iranian people’s legitimate right to defend against the brutal attacks of the IRGC. While criticizing the UK government for its delay, Mr. Shannon called for proscribing the IRGC.

Member of Parliament Martyn Day conveyed his unwavering support for the people of Iran and their struggle for freedom. Reflecting on the personal testimonies shared at the event, he expressed deep empathy, acknowledging the unimaginable hardships faced by those subjected to torture, imprisonment, and execution under the oppressive Iranian regime.

MP Day commended the courage and resilience of Iranian Resistance Units, applauding their relentless pursuit of freedom despite the regime’s brutality. He emphasized the importance of lending voices and advocating for decisive action from governments, including the prescription of the IRGC, which he described as a vital step towards confronting state-sponsored terrorism.

Expressing concern over diplomatic relations with Iran, MP Day called for an end to such engagements, citing the regime’s use of embassies and foreign diplomacy to spread terrorism globally. He stressed the need for full support of the opposition and encouraged efforts to empower individuals fighting for change within Iran.

Acknowledging the immense bravery displayed by Iranians, particularly women and students, Baron Whitty highlighted their unwavering commitment to fighting for freedom despite facing severe repercussions. He said, “It has been an awful situation for young people in Iran. We noticed these political activists, but I think what has happened over the last few weeks is that the complete failure of the election, the so-called election in Iran, to give any endorsement to the regime, has shown that even the passive members of the population in Iran, who won’t go on the streets, but they do have no faith in the ability of the current regime to improve the situation.”

Baron Whitty noted the growing dissatisfaction with the current regime’s inability to address the country’s challenges, which he found heartening for the prospects of change in Iran.

Baron Whitty underscored the importance of international awareness and support for the Iranian Resistance, particularly among the student and academic communities in the West. He urged for solidarity and action to help those risking their lives to bring about change in Iran.

Robert Ward, Deputy of the Seldon and Edington City Council, highlighted the global challenge posed by the Iranian regime, offering the NCRI, led by its elected president, as a viable alternative. He underscored the importance of considering Mrs. Rajavi’s Ten-Point Plan, emphasizing its sustainability and democratic nature, urging support for this alternative approach.

During the gathering, individuals from the Iranian British community, along with university professors, scholars, and human rights activists, voiced their experiences and motivations for participating in the struggle for freedom and democracy in Iran. They reaffirmed their unwavering commitment to continue advancing this cause.