A court in Antwerp, Belgium will announce its verdict about Iran’s diplomat-terrorist Assadollah Assadi and his three accomplices on February 4. 2021.
According to Belgian prosecutors and based on the evidence, the Iranian regime had tasked Assadi and three other terrorists to target the Iranian opposition rally in France on June 30, 2018. According to the prosecutors, the primary target was Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the opposition’s president-elect. Assadi had instructed his operatives to plant the bomb as close as possible to her.
In an article on January 13, the French daily Le Monde revealed how the regime in Iran had mobilized its efforts to save Assadi.
Le Monde revealed that a new piece of evidence in the Belgian investigations, which has been recently published, “confirms the amount of attention that Tehran is paying” to Assadi’s case.
“A note drafted by security and sent to the federal prosecutor’s office, in charge of terrorism cases, detailed, in August 2019, the numerous visits by Iranian officials to Mr. Assadi, then in preventive detention in Belgian Limburg,” Le Monde added.
Le Monde underlined that at least “fourteen personalities” of the regime in Tehran visited Assadi. Besides the regime’s ambassador to France and some Iranian doctors and lawyers living in France and Belgium, “five other visitors, connected to the Iranian government,” visited Assadi, based on the note Le Monde saw.
“They had come from Tehran as a delegation and told Belgium that they were members of the foreign ministry. However, the Belgian authorities have only been able to identify three of them.”
Le Monde then referred to Mrs. Rajavi’s testimony, during which she “gave investigators a note detailing the role of some of these officials. One of them was, in fact, one of the main leaders of the Ministry of Intelligence and Security, in charge of overseeing agents stationed in foreign countries and acting undercover.”
“A special committee bringing together different services has also been set up in Tehran to follow up on the Assadi case,” Le Monde wrote, adding, “Assadi threatened Belgium with possible retaliation if it condemns him.”
Besides its diplomatic pressure, the regime has tried to use its hostage-taking tool and blackmailing campaign to force Belgian authorities to release Assadi.
Simultaneous with Assadi’s trial, the regime announced it would execute Ahmadreza Djalali, an Iranian-Swedish academic who taught in Belgium. In reaction to the regime’s extortion campaign, the Belgian Parliament adopted a resolution, threatening to cut all relations with Tehran’s regime if Mr. Djalali was executed. The regime was thus forced to momentarily halt his execution.
Having failed to blackmail Belgium, the regime tried to undermine the Belgian court’s legitimacy of holding Assadi on trial.
Despite having its diplomat-terrorist caught red-handed, Tehran’s regime has tried to portray him as an innocent “diplomat” on duty.
A regime that has massacred over 30,000 political prisoners in 1988 and has one of the main perpetrators of this massacre, Ebrahim Raisi, as its Judiciary Chief – who continues the extrajudicial punishments – called the Belgian court “illegitimate.”
Assadi’s trial is historic since it is the first time Iran’s career diplomat has gone on trial for terrorism in Europe and could mark a precedent. Therefore, Assadi’s trial has infuriated the regime.
Since Assadi’s arrest, the regime’s official policy has insisted on Assadi’s so-called “diplomatic immunity” and that the Belgian authorities cannot prosecute Assadi. Despite being caught red-handed, Assadi also repeated the same bogus claim and has refused to appear in court.
Yet, during Assadi’s trial, the prosecutor said that according to Belgium’s 2002 legislation, even if Assadi had diplomatic immunity, Belgian authorities could have arrested him. The prosecutor added that even according to Austrian law, Belgian authorities were entitled to arrest Assadi since he planned to commit mass murder. International law allows authorities to strip Assadi of his diplomatic immunity and arrest him.
Assadi’s trial is the trial of the entire regime. “According to the long investigation by the Belgian justice, state security, and the intelligence service, the whole operation was designed at the highest level in Tehran, in connection with the defendants who had worked for a long time for the [regime’s] Ministry of Intelligence and Security,” Le Monde wrote in this regard.
According to Le Monde, “Jaak Raas, the head of the Belgium security, said the action was instigated ‘in the name of Iran, under its leadership.'”
The 2018 bombing plot was an act of state-sponsored terrorism by the Iranian regime and Assadi was tasked to carry out this plot on behalf of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence with coordination with the Foreign Ministry.
Assadi has been clinging to his so-called diplomatic immunity. He will continue doing so this since his boss, the regime’s Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif, who played a crucial role in facilitating the bomb plot, still enjoys his “diplomatic immunity” and is greeted by the European leaders.
Assadi’s trial marks a moment for the EU to end the regime’s terrorism and blackmailing campaign by ending the appeasement policy.
The EU should shut down all Iranian regime’s embassies and expel its so-called “diplomats”. This would undoubtedly send the right message to Tehran that its terrorism on European soil will not be tolerated.