Excerpts of speech by Dr Alejo Vidal-Quadras, vice-president of the European Parliament on April 9, 2014:
“The only realistic option for Iran is regime change and the establishment of real, and I underline real, democracy.This is not a dream or ideal. There is a real alternative capable of directing this transition and many in this house understand that Mrs Rajavi is a true democrat and a true leader who shows great instincts even under pressure and at times of terrible difficulties. I have seen this working closely with her over the the past 12 years.
What makes the NCRI a viable alternative? Firstly, their program based upon legitimate, logical and dependable political lines. Despite the differences in the region, culture, religion and history between Iran and Europe, we have never had any difficulties defending them in the European parliament. Their values are consistent with ours. The 10-point plan that Mrs Rajavi is committed to is as democratic as any European party’s platform. For instance, I could defend this platform in my own election in Spain with comfort. The PMOI and NCRI are not compromising on fundamental issues such as the overthrow of the regime.
They have shown real ability to find solutions that benefit both parties engaged in a dialogue such as the process of the removal from the European Union and US blacklist or the transfer from Ashraf to Liberty that they agreed to although it was dangerous in order to show compromise with other parties and they paid a very high price for it.
We are looking forward to the next NCRI gathering, Ms. Maryam Rajavi, in Paris next June. It is a really colorful event and it is a feast of democracy and always a pleasure to participate.
In spite of facing torture and executions inside Iran, and terrorism and blackmail outside Iran over the past 35 years, this movement was able to maintain its organization and strength. This would have not been possible without such broad social support.
Thirdly, this organization and its members have some major characteristics, such as willingness to sacrifice and pay the ultimate price for their inspirations. It is through this kind of sacrifice that they were able to endure torture and executions. They have also knowledge, skills and wholehearted dedications.
The people I met on my visit to Ashraf, and those in the NCRI I meet frequently, have all proved to me that they are reliable and truly committed to the values we share.
Fourthly, this Resistance has met major challenges in recent years, being bombed, placed on the terror list, transfer of protection of Ashraf from US to Iraqi forces, forced transfer from Ashraf to liberty, repeated massacres by the Iraqi forces, just to name a few.
Management and leadership through these crisis were peaceful, comprehensive, proving the ability of the movement for regime change into effectively manage the Iranian society afterwards.
Any one of these crisis would have been able to bring down a movement, even a very powerful one. They are the clear proof of the mullah’s fear of the NCRI. I want to call the words of a Dutch member of this parliament who is one of the key advocates of the increased ties with the regime.
After she visited Iran a few months ago, she said: “It was also remarkable that in each and every meeting that we had, we were criticized as Europeans because some members of our parliament have met with the PMOI and it was clearly a very sensitive issue. There was real concern on the Iranian side about such meetings taking place.”
Dear colleagues, to conclude, I should say that we, in Europe, in the west, by not understanding the real position of the resistance, have lost a great deal. The European Union should listen to the democratic opposition to promote the policy of a regime change for a free and democratic Iran.
If we want to be consistent with our values, if we want to prove real commitment to democracy and human rights, we should not and can not be neutral and passive or hesitant.
In the long and dedicated fight of the democratic opposition of Iran, against the totalitarian regime that oppresses its own people with such cruelty, we must be clearly and firmly on one side. The side of NCRI, the side of Mrs Rajavi, the side of those who are in Camp Liberty, and give their lives for the common cause of peace, tolerance, human dignity and freedom.
Mrs. President, be sure that our support will not fade until the final victory, the victory you deserve and we all hope to share with you one day.”