Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), delivered a speech on the advent of the holy month of Ramadhan. In her message, while referring to the regime’s cover-up of the coronavirus outbreak, which has so far claimed lives of 36,200 people, Mrs. Rajavi prayed for the Iranian people and condemned regime’s criminal inaction and cover-up and encouraged youth to rise up against the religious fascism ruling Iran. While referring to the restive Iranian society, Mrs. Rajavi said: “the Army of Freedom will rise up and come to the people’s aid.”
The full text of this message is below:
Maryam Rajavi’s speech on the advent of the Holy Month of Ramadan
Dear sisters and brothers,
Greetings to all of you.
May your prayers and fasting be accepted.
Certainly, those who rise up in quest of freedom and justice are also the ones whose prayers and fasting are genuine.
Ramadan has arrived. It is month in which through Taqva (restraint), we liberate ourselves from the routine, strengthen our resolve and prepare ourselves as much as possible to wage an ever greater battle against the enemies of our people’s lives, liberties, and rights.
It is the month to ask about the reasons for starvation and privations suffered by the destitute. May fasting arouse the conscience of humanity to rebel against this enduring suffering, and ask how much longer will this injustice and starvation last? How much longer do the people have to be victimized by illness and impoverishment?
Yes, Ramadan is the time to ask about the misfortune of those without any savior, to ask about the fate of the sick, and about those who have been eliminated, shunned and driven out to the slums.
It is the time to ask about the people who have been stripped of their right be healthy. It is the time to ask about the people whose right to live in freedom and equality has been trampled upon by the barbaric and plunderer mullahs.
Ramadan is also the month of Imam Ali, the leader of the deprived and the oppressed, the champion of justice and equity. On the meaning of justice, Imam Ali said: «وَالْعَدْلُ سَائِسٌ عام»
Justice safeguards everyone, i.e. the entire society and people; it is a universal ethos. In diametric opposition to Ali, the mullahs’ religion and conduct rest on oppression, crime and plunder.
In Ramadan the ruling mullahs become more and more disgraced for what they have done to the masses.
Ramadan contrasts the images of the owners and passengers of cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, with the overwhelming majority whose suffering from illness, poverty, hunger, and oppression in spreading.
It contrasts the colorful dining tables of a small minority with the empty baskets of tens of millions of plundered Iranians.
It contrasts the palaces, villas and royal living conditions of the detested billionaire mullahs with millions of slum dwellers who suffer from abject poverty.
People lacking jobs to make ends meet, lacking suitable housing to live in, and lacking medication and care to dispense with illness and disease; those who would not have anything to eat unless they go out to earn their meager food every day even in the midst of the outbreak. Not to mention that their damp, tiny and crowded homes do not protect them from the coronavirus.
Why are they suffering from such a predicament? Because the ruling mullahs have usurped the people’s wealth and rights. As it has been stated in the Quran:
Have you seen those who attribute falsities to the religion?
The very people who drive away the orphans,
And do not encourage feeding of the destitute.
So, woe to the worshippers!
Those who are neglectful and not honest in their prayers,
Those who prevent and monopolize the sources of production and public wealth.
In his book, Partovi az Quran (A ray of light from the Quran), Ayatollah Seyed Mahmoud Taleghani explains the meaning of this Sura, called Maun: “If worshippers pray with the intention of getting closer to God and stay away from duplicity, then they must endeavor so that everyone has access to the resources and the means necessary for livelihood. They must uphold the people’s legitimate rights. They must look up to God, but extend their hands and reach out to the poor and the oppressed. If they acted as such and if they held themselves responsible for the people, then it could be said that they have upheld both the meaning and form of prayer. Otherwise, they are only hypocrites, not worshippers…
“Maun (Arabic for means of production) are naturally for public to benefit from. The individuals who prevent the public from benefiting from these (sources of livelihood) are those who place obstacles and abuse the public’s rights. So, to return to the original and natural conditions where the sources of wealth are for everyone’s benefit, the obstacles and people who prevent this from happening must be removed and forced to relinquish their grip.”
Yes, the grip of oppressive and plundering rulers on the people of Iran must be relinquished. The tyrannical rule built on injustice, theft and pillage must be brought down.
Under the mullahs’ rule, every Ramadan has been a month of starvation, deprivation, and coercion for most people. More tragically this year, there is added pain and grief as a result of the spread of the coronavirus and tens of thousands of fatalities due to the mullahs’ rule. The coronavirus outbreak is of course a global pandemic, but in Iran, because of the inhuman, anti-Islamic and anti-Iranian rule of the mullahs’ religious fascism, the situation is different.
As the Leader of the Iranian Resistance, Massoud Rajavi, pointed out, one must not compare the circumstances in Iran and the clerical regime’s policies during the catastrophe to any other country. It would be misleading to apply the Chinese, European, or American models in this regard.
In Iran, the policy adopted by Ali Khamenei (the regime’s supreme leader) and Hassan Rouhani (the mullahs’ president) could be summarized in one short sentence: Protecting the regime from the danger posed by uprisings. So, as was the case in the unpatriotic Iran-Iraq war and in the massacre of political prisoners in 1988, the regime has adopted the strategy of inflicting wholesale and enormous human casualties and essentially sending waves of human beings into coronavirus minefields. The regime’s Health Ministry predicts that the number of coronavirus cases will exceed 1,160,000 by mid-May. Add to all these, patients abandoned in the streets or at hospital entrances, writhing in pain, countless graves being dug, an appalling number of deaths, the risk of rampant starvation and famine, the army of the hungry, and even tens of thousands of hungry chicks buried alive…
Yes, this is the situation in the restless society of Iran under the rule of an inhuman regime.
An inhuman regime with an inhuman record
The record of this inhuman regime is replete with inhuman practices over the past 40 years, and now contains yet another inhuman policy.
In 1982, in the appraisal of the first year of the nationwide armed resistance, Massoud Rajavi said, “We believe the Khomeini regime is an inhuman and demagogic dictatorship… Why do we use the word inhuman? Because the words ‘unpopular’ and ‘counterrevolutionary’ are not sufficiently expressive. These terms could be applied to the Shah’s regime. But the Khomeini regime arises from a pre-capitalist mentality. And in view of all their crimes and the fact that the mullahs are intent on annihilating all of Iran’s material and human resources, the word ‘inhuman’ is more expressive.”
On that basis, let’s consider the clerical regime’s record since the outset of its rule to today. The best descriptor for the catastrophic havoc it has wreaked is “inhuman.” Suppression and plunder are not all the mullahs have done; they have also destroyed, burnt, dried up and eradicated. This can be seen everywhere: in the environment, in the economy, in the society’s ethics and culture, in education, in basic infrastructure, in villages and cities, in water resources for industry and agriculture, in healthcare, and the system of social security. Yes, they have destroyed everything, everywhere.
Forty years of the mullahs’ rule has dismantled the country’s medical, health and welfare foundations to a large extent, leaving our country and society unable to defend against pandemics.
Regime cover-up, inaction, the cause of the rapid spread of the coronavirus in Iran
When it comes to the novel coronavirus, when the virus spread to Iran and the first instances of fatalities were seen as a result, the mullahs covered it up in order to conduct their theatrics on the anniversary of the 1979 Revolution on February 11 and their sham parliamentary elections. The mullahs’ Minister of Interior even explicitly admitted that he did not accept suggestions and requests to postpone the sham elections. In other words, the virus was spreading and the regime was holding that charade.
The NCRI Security and Counterterrorism Committee exposed dozens of documents obtained from inside the regime’s National Emergency Organization and the State Security Forces, leaving no doubt that Rouhani is lying when he claims that he learned about the outbreak on February 19. The evidence shows that ambulances were busy transferring infected patients since the final days of January. After three months of denials, the regime’s officials and figureheads started admitting the truth in mid-April.
Finally, Rouhani’s own Minister of Health has acknowledged that at least a month before February 19, the date that Rouhani claims he first found out about the outbreak, he had asked for an emergency meeting to stop flights to and from China and had asked the closure of schools, public gatherings and religious sites.
At the same time, Gholamreza Jalali, the Head of the regime’s Civil Defense Organization, also asserted on state television that with the spread of the outbreak in China, “we had internal meetings in January. We appraised the situation and monitored what was happening… Our first official meeting was held on January 25, and we invited all the relevant parties.”
It is, therefore, very clear that the regime leaders’ failure to take any action in January was a deliberate attempt to prevent news of the outbreak from leaking out. This is what accelerated the spread of the virus to all over the country.
And when the catastrophic surge in the death toll did not leave any room for further denials and disavowals, Khamenei and Rouhani resorted to inhuman policies and actions.
Downplaying the dangers of the coronavirus crisis
This policy has been adopted, and is being advanced, on several fronts:
1. Downplaying the coronavirus crisis in a bid to normalize conditions. Khamenei keeps repeating that “This is not such a big calamity. There have been worse instances.”
And Rouhani claims that the situation is improving. They underreport the number of deaths in order to avoid taking action to fight the pandemic.
Lockdown, the regime’s minimum responsibility
2. The mullahs have abandoned the obligations that any government fulfils when faced with emergency conditions.
They refuse to quarantine hotspots. They do not provide hospitals with required funding, equipment, and salaries for doctors and nurses. They have dodged rapid construction of new hospitals. They refuse to pay the salaries of workers, employees and other job holders who must not go to work.
They have also refrained from deploying the government’s resources, particularly its financial and technological resources consolidated in the IRGC’s holdings and companies as well as by Khamenei’s Headquarters.
The strategy of colossal human fatalities and sending people to the altar of coronavirus
3. They are tilting the present circumstances toward triggering wholesale casualties. They have ordered workers and vulnerable people on a vast social scale to go back to work, without providing them any protective equipment, without first responder or emergency medical teams, and without creating the preconditions to prevent transmission and spread of the virus.
After all, what can multitudes of workers, government employees, and clients of government agencies do when they are packed in metro trains, buses, and work spaces? Does that leave any doubt about the regime’s intention to deliberately push people to their deaths? But why?
Because Khamenei and Rouhani are implementing the exact model that was instituted during their unpatriotic war (with Iraq in the 1980s) and the massacre of political prisoners (in 1988) as a way to preserve their regime from the danger of uprisings and from the threat of being overthrown. They have thus adopted the strategy of triggering massive human casualties by sending people to their deaths on the minefields of the coronavirus.
In his book the “Islamic State,” published before he seized power in Iran, Khomeini says that it is permissible to cause mass deaths “of a tribe” in favor of the state’s interests.
Then, after he took power, he called his ominous war with Iraq “a divine gift.” That was a war that he intended to use as a platform to reach Quds (Jerusalem) through Karbala (in Iraq) at the cost of one million deaths on the Iranian side alone.
And when he lost the war, in order to save his regime, he ordered the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners who were still serving their prison sentences.
Now, his successor, Khamenei, callously says, “this problem is very small compared to many other problems.”
Let’s not forget that it was Khamenei who ordered the chain murders (of intellectuals) in the 1990s.
And on the first day after the eruption of protests in November, he was the one who ordered slaughter of protesters and authorized his forces to fire at will.
It was Khamenei who ordered the deportation of Médecins sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders) from Iran after they had arrived in Isfahan to set up a field hospital on the basis of a previous agreement with the Foreign Ministry of the regime itself.
Indeed, it was also Khamenei who issued the demented and un-Islamic fatwa to wash, shroud and bury the victims of COVID-19 just like normal circumstances. The edict is nothing but a deliberate attempt to spread the virus.
All this shows why, since the start of this outbreak, Massoud Rajavi targeted the “virus of the velayat-e faqih” (absolute clerical rule).
Indeed, Khamenei’s enterprise is the epicenter for spreading death, disease, terrorism, torture, plunder and corruption. This is why the rebellious youths and the popular protests and uprisings cannot wait to bring down and destroy it.
The minimum duties of a people’s government
My fellow compatriots,
If instead of the mullahs’ religious dictatorship, people’s sovereignty was in place and all the people’s votes were respected, the elected government would have at least done the minimum:
From the outset, it would have announced a national state of emergency and informed the public about the situation. It would not have kept more than 80 million Iranians in the dark or surprise them about a life-or-death issue that affects them all.
It would have wrapped up all the plans for the anniversary of the revolution and the parliamentary elections.
Instead of clerics, the IRGC, the Bassij and the notorious Ministry of Intelligence agents, it would have leveraged the expertise of specialists and doctors to shut down any public places that would be necessary, from mosques and holy shrines to movie theaters. It would have stopped all flights and banned travel to contaminated regions and it would have quarantined wherever necessary.
A nationalist government would also relegate administrative authority to popular councils in all districts and neighborhoods in every city and village. And it would have summoned all its energy to provide for the needs of people and hospitals.
It would have paid the salaries of workers, office employees, teachers and all working people during the lockdown.
It would make available to people all the funds and assets of people under state control.
A nationalist government would strongly support all the nurses and doctors, providing a comfortable life for their families and children.
A nationalist government would increase the number of emergency workers, providing the essential equipment to prevent infection of doctors, nurses and all medical staff in hospitals. It would have increased their salaries so that they could care for patients.
It would also undertake industrial loans, especially for small businesses, in order to prevent their bankruptcy and lay-off of their employees.
A nationalist and popular government would certainly leverage the cooperation and support of farmers, garden owners, livestock owners and producers of food products to produce healthy food at low prices.
Let me also point out two issues in parenthesis here:
First, the population of Iran is significantly smaller than those of China, India, Indonesia or Bangladesh. Second, Iran’s wealth is truly much more than many other countries. This wealth includes oil, gas and mineral resources and the donations made to the Imam Reza Shrine in the Astan-e Qods-e Razavi.
In March 2018, the mullahs’ former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wrote that the wealth hogged by foundations under Khamenei’s control amount to some 700 trillion tomans (156 billion USD at the time). In those days, the value of the Iranian currency against the US dollar was 3.5 times what it is today. The US dollar was exchanged in Tehran’s market for a maximum rate of 4,495 tomans, whereas today this rate is closer to 16,500 tomans.
So, I must reiterate: 1. Iran’s population is smaller compared to China and India; and 2. Iran’s wealth is much more than many other countries. Therefore, our country’s persistent problem has been the rule of kings and clerics (Shah and Sheikh) and not shortages.
I outlined the duties of a nationalist government. But as far as the clerical regime is concerned, we say that this regime itself can afford to pay the wages of workers and salaries of government employees for at least the duration of the lockdown period.
It can provide the public with free equipment and medications needed to fight the coronavirus to enable our people to get through this period.
Hospitals and clinics must consider it a national duty and an imperative to treat infected patients free of charge. The government must pay for these expenses by relying on Iran’s wealth and resources, which belong to the people of Iran in their entirety.
All military and skilled industrial centers must undertake the production of necessary equipment and items to fight the coronavirus.
In my Nowruz (Persian New Year) message this year, I highlighted the horrific figure of 60 million people living under the poverty line in Iran, which includes temporary workers, poor farmers, slum dwellers, the unemployed and the hungry.
Indeed, why is it that the mullahs’ regime, which claims to be Islamic and a supporter of the oppressed, does not exempt these 60 million people from paying their utility bills?
Why do the farmers, villagers, garden workers, livestock owners, and producers of food products not provided with financial, technical and training support and facilities?
The conclusion is that we can and must triumph over the coronavirus, but not with this government and this regime.
For this regime the priority is preserving the system and not people’s health
The mullahs are the cold-hearted enemies of Iran and its people. They have robbed safety from the Iranian people, leaving them without any form of support or refuge.
The Iranian people, especially the hardworking and destitute, are left alone in face of the monster of poverty. They are defenseless in the face of the monster of disease. They have no solutions. As the Quran says, they are crying out:
O’ Lord, help us out of this land of oppressors, bless us with qualified leadership, and assign one of your strong and helping hands to assist us.
Khamenei and his allies have chosen to preserve their decadent regime at the cost of the lives of millions of Iranians. They see the regime’s survival as the most essential necessity. This is why they have stationed their Revolutionary Guards, Bassij and Ministry of Intelligence agents in hospitals to prevent leaks of real news and statistics, to prevent revelation of identities of those who die or are infected. They seek to prevent people from protesting, and if anyone dares to speak up, they will engage in suppression and arrests.
Essentially, the clerical regime does not deem the health of people and society as fundamental. The fundamental aim is to protect their regime in the face of uprisings and against the threat of being overthrown.
This is why they have increased the number of patrols and additional controls everywhere. This is why they have resumed the executions of prisoners and terrorize the public to the maximum degree.
And all this unfolds in the month of Ramadan. As the Quran says:
Woe to the blasphemers,
Woe to the oppressors,
Woe to the criminal liars.
There is no doubt that the criminal mullahs who have dragged the people of Iran into such an abyss of disease and death, will not be able to save their regime.
So far, confusion and instability have plagued the regime so much that state-run media, analysts, and even members of the regime’s parliament have been warning each other about further uprisings and “a colossal protest movement.”
The state-run daily Jahan San’at wrote on April 22, “Today, the economic consequences of the coronavirus and subsequent social consequences of the disease have begun to emerge in the country. Economic collapse followed by a social collapse will be inevitable in the near future, leading to another eruption of economic and social discontent. This time, of course, the protests will be more intense and accompanied by more violence. They could be described as a colossal protest movement, in which the lower and middle class sectors will participate more.” (Jahan-e San’at – April 22)
Yes, today, the entire regime is taking its last breaths and has no cure. Missile and satellite launch theatrics are no longer effective.
Everywhere, the regime must be targeted
The only path to salvation and freedom is for the Iranian people to take their destiny in their own hands.
In Ramadan, the month of Imam Ali, “one must rely on this triumphant lion of God to target the regime everywhere.”
As Massoud Rajavi said, “If every death is an opportunity and a blessing for the mullahs’ religious fascism, we must rebel and wage a battle against the regime that is a hundred times more intense, and turn these deaths into the countdown for the regime’s overthrow.” Yes, “Rebels will create victories.”
Yes, I repeat, the people of Iran and their valiant children will rebel against the coronavirus and the virus of the theocratic regime, and they shall overcome.
Look at the innocent prisoners rebelling in the prisons of Khorramabad, Aligoudarz, Mahabad, Adelabad of Shiraz, Saqqez, Ahvaz, Tabriz, Hamadan and Fashafuyeh in Tehran.
Look at the courageous youths and the Resistance Units who have taken the initiative, disseminating the message of hope and rebellion everywhere.
These are the sparks of a volcano which will soon erupt. And the Army of Freedom will rise up and come to the people’s aid.
Dear Lord, in your month and your feast, we are praying to you.
We ask you to bless our patients in all cities and villages, bestowing them health and recovery.
O’ God, our defenseless and homeless people, our innocent patients, our oppressed and plundered compatriots have no one to ask for help other than you.
So, we ask for your mercy in the face of this disease and in the face of the evil of the ruling mullahs.
O’ Great Lord, increase the endurance of our people in the face of the coronavirus crisis, keep them safe, and save and liberate Iran and all Iranians from the evil virus of the mullahs’ religious dictatorship.
Dear Lord, help our prisoners and captives in the torture dungeons of the mullahs’ Judiciary, IRGC and Ministry of Intelligence to grow their strength and resistance.
Help the selfless nurses and physicians who have protected patients for the past few months. Bless them with ever greater patience and tolerance and keep them safe from the coronavirus, and the evil of the mullahs and the IRGC.
O’ God, help the Resistance Units that have risen up against the virus of the velayat-e faqih, and boost their resistance and fighting spirit.
O’ Great God!
Massoud Rajavi’s cry of agony and outrage over the Iranian people’s helplessness, inspires everyone, especially the youth, to rise up and rebel, and to unite and express solidarity. Help him lead our wounded country through his qualified leadership to the shores of freedom, health and justice.
Give him, his supporters and the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) the ability to overthrow the velayat-e faqih regime and to liberate the Iranian people from the evil of these inhuman enemies.
Dear Lord, the MEK, and members and supporters of this Resistance, are in great agony over the suffering of their people and the calamities inflicted on them. Help them turn their grief and drive into a battle that is a hundred times more intense. Give them greater power in adhering to their pledge to liberate their enchained people and homeland and forge ahead on this path so that Iran would be cleansed of the two vicious viruses of the mullahs and coronavirus.
Dear Lord, help bring to ultimate fruition the sacrifices that the Mojahedin have made for you and in your path, namely the freedom of the Iranian people.
God, make us full of perseverance;
Strengthen our steps;
And grant us victory over regressive forces and those who conceal the truth;
Ramadan will be blessed in this way.
May God bless the people of Iran with health, goodness and prosperity.
Passing of Massoumeh Joshaghani, a sincere supporter of the PMOI
Unfortunately, this morning, my dear sister, Massoumeh Joshaghani, one of the loyal supporters of the PMOI, passed away in Paris and left the large family of the Iranian Resistance in grief.
Many of PMOI women who were in prison in 1980s and those who have been in touch with the National Council of Resistance of Iran, know her very well.
Massoumeh Joshaghani was a former political prisoner who had endured much torture in the regime’s jails. She was a long-time supporter of the PMOI since the beginning of the clerical regime’s rule. And throughout the years, she remained a loyal supporter of the PMOI and made sincere contributions to the Iranian Resistance.
My deep sympathies go out to Dr. Mohammad-Ali Sheikhi, chairman of the NCRI Universities Committee, and to my dear Maryam, Sara, and Amistis, who lost such a great mother. I also extend my condolences to all PMOI members and the family of the Iranian Resistance.
At this time, everyone in the PMOI and the Iranian Resistance share the grief of Dr. Sheikhi who has struggled relentlessly for 40 years alongside the Resistance’s Leader Massoud Rajavi and has always adopted admirable positions in defense of the principles of the NCRI.
Despite long years since her imprisonment, Massoumeh remained resistant and inspired by the symbols of perseverance in prison. She published her prison memoirs in the name of Shourangiz, i.e. Dr. Massoumeh Karimian, who was a symbol of staunch resistance in the regime’s prisons.
Massoumeh was a tireless advocate for and defender of the PMOI throughout the years. She defended her sisters and brothers in Ashraf and Camp Liberty. She used to say, “All my soul is with the residents of Ashraf and especially, the sisters who were my cellmates.”
May she rest in peace. I am sure that she will always be remembered for her goodness, purity and fortitude which are part of the movement’s conscience. We will miss her at this moment in time, but her demise adds to the responsibility of all members of the Resistance in leading their battle for freedom to its ultimate destination.
We pay tribute to my dear sister, Massoumeh, and her passion for freedom and resistance.