Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists

Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists

Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK TerroristsTehran Times, May 07 2021:… Asadollah Asadi is an Iranian diplomat, who was arrested while returning to his residence in Austria on a highway in the German state of Bavaria on June 10, 2018. He was accused of being involved in an attempted bombing at a gathering of the so-called National Council of Resistance of Iran (a Mojahedin-e-Khalgh organization branch). Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists 

Tehran Times, May 07 2021:... Asadollah Asadi is an Iranian diplomat, who was arrested while returning to his residence in Austria on a highway in the German state of Bavaria on June 10, 2018. He was accused of being involved in an attempted bombing at a gathering of the so-called National Council of Resistance of Iran (a Mojahedin-e-Khalgh organization branch). Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists Once again the arrested bombers turn out to be MEK (Maryam Rajavi cult) members.

Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists

Tehran strongly protests Belgian court verdict against Iranian diplomat

TEHRAN— After the Belgian Court of Antwerp sentenced Asadollah Asadi, an Iranian diplomat to 20 years of jail, the Iranian Embassy in Belgium released a statement condemning the sentence and questioned the authority of the Belgian court.

The statement released by the Iranian Embassy reads as follows:

“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Most Merciful

The Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Brussels refers to its previous Press Release dated 4 February 2021 on the verdict of the Court of Antwerp in the case of the Iranian diplomat, and seizes the occasion to state the following regarding the current developments:

As stated in the previous Press Release, the Islamic Republic of Iran has strongly protested the violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (1961) by Germany and Belgium, and deems the actions on the part of the said governments to be a stark contravention of customary international law and established diplomatic practices. 

The verdict of the Court of Antwerp of 4 February 2021 indicated that the Belgian judicial system does not heed the binding nature of commitments under the Vienna Convention. The Islamic Republic of Iran has officially rejected the Belgian court’s competence in two Note Verbales to Belgium and Germany on the grounds of the court’s violation of the immunity of Mr. Asadi’s person as a diplomat under the 1961 Convention. 

In line with the above notes, the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right to resort to all legal mechanisms, including the Vienna Convention’s optional protocol concerning the compulsory settlement of disputes.”

Negotiations Bad For MEK – Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – Apr 30, 2021

Asadollah Asadi is an Iranian diplomat, who was arrested while returning to his residence in Austria on a highway in the German state of Bavaria on June 10, 2018. He was accused of being involved in an attempted bombing at a gathering of the so-called National Council of Resistance of Iran (a Mojahedin-e-Khalgh organization branch) in Villepinte, north of Paris.

On February 4, 2021, Asadi was sentenced to 20 years in prison for “attempted murder and involvement in terrorism.”

Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, had condemned the verdict, stating that “the Islamic Republic of Iran strongly condemns the announcement of the Belgian Court of Antwerp to issue a 20-year prison sentence for Asadi”

He had said that Belgium and some European countries are heavily influenced by the MEK.

He had noted that as Iran has stated several times, all stages of Asadi’s detention, the judicial process, the issuance of the recent sentence are illegal and in flagrant violation of international law, particularly the provisions of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

The international community considers the MEK a terrorist group. Its members jointed Iraq’s Saddam Hussein in the war against Iran in the 1980.

For decades, the infamous group has carried out various attacks against Iranian civilians and government officials.

Following concerted lobbying by groups affiliated with Saudi Arabia and other regimes hostile to Iran, the U.S. State Department removed the MEK from its list of designated terrorist organizations in 2012

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Sheltering Mujahedin-e-Khalq Terrorists Unacceptable -Iran Slams EU for violating Human Rights

Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists

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https://iran-interlink.org/wordpress/iranian-diplomat-was-set-up-using/

Iranian diplomat was set up using a demented woman and her small cult

Iranian diplomat was set up using MEKHossein Jelveh, Press TV, Tehran, February 18 2021:… It is worth noting that the accusation against Mr. Assadi is that he was involved in a bomb plot against an anti-Iran group known as the MKO, or more commonly the MEK, a small cult of deranged individuals who have spent most of their lives confined to camps wishing to topple the Iranian government. Their leader, a demented woman who teaches celibacy and armed opposition to Iran, views herself as Iran’s president-in-waiting. The Israeli regime is known to have tapped healthier MKO members to conduct terror attacks inside Iran. Iranian diplomat was set up using a demented woman and her small cult 


MEK Propaganda Message: Death to Diplomacy:


Iranian diplomat was set up using a demented woman and her small cult

Holding an Iranian diplomat cannot lead to ‘maximum diplomacy’ with Iran

Iranian Diplomat Taken Hostage by Using MEK Terrorists

EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Joseph Borrell (R) has said the former US President Donald Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign has to be replaced with “maximum diplomacy.” EU member state Belgium is, meanwhile, holding an Iranian diplomat, Assadollah Assadi (L), in contravention of the Vienna Convention.

(Hossein Jelveh is an independent Iranian journalist based in Tehran. He has graduated with a master’s degree from the Faculty of World Studies at the University of Tehran. You can follow him on Twitter @hossein_jelveh.)

The European Union is a peculiar construct. The idea behind its establishment was to — by jam-packing different political and economic units into one giant entity — create a powerhouse that is politically and economically uniform and competitive. But the result has been an unwieldy structure that struggles to impose unity on its components on matters of internal and external policy and that is submissive to traditional power players, including those inside the Union itself.

Germany and France, among the world’s top 10 economies, seem to lay an outsized claim to authority as political and economic decision-makers in the EU, even though the bloc has appointed senior representatives for policymaking. All the while, poorer, outlying members differ on policy and budget assignment.

That disequilibrium has been on display in the EU’s approach toward Iran, too. While the Union’s high representative for foreign policy seems to be in favor of sound diplomacy with Iran, individual member states, mostly the more powerful ones, have been singing their own tune.

The latest instance is the case of an Iranian diplomat who has been accused of involvement in an alleged bomb plot in Europe. Diplomat Assadollah Assadi, posted originally to EU member Austria, was arrested in EU member Germany in 2018 and was moved to EU member Belgium, where authorities claimed they had intercepted him communicating with alleged suspects planning to bomb a gathering of anti-Iran cultists in France, also an EU member.

Those countries are using their membership in the Union to easily have Mr. Assadi arrested in one member state and move and try him in another, but are conveniently refusing to acknowledge his diplomatic immunity on the grounds that it applies only to one member state, namely Austria. Essentially, they are being EU members when prosecuting Mr. Assadi but unconnected individual units when it comes to acknowledging his immunity.

That duplicitous behavior is confounded when juxtaposed with the position of the Union’s top representative for foreign and security policy, Josep Borrell, who has said he seeks “maximum diplomacy” with Iran.

I asked Belgian Ambassador to Tehran Véronique Petit to comment on the apparent confliction of positions for this article. She declined via the Belgian Embassy on the grounds that it is a “judicial case,” even though the matter is political and she represents all branches of the Kingdom of Belgium in Iran.

It is worth noting that the accusation against Mr. Assadi is that he was involved in a bomb plot against an anti-Iran group known as the MKO, or more commonly the MEK, a small cult of deranged individuals who have spent most of their lives confined to camps wishing to topple the Iranian government. Their leader, a demented woman who teaches celibacy and armed opposition to Iran, views herself as Iran’s president-in-waiting. The Israeli regime is known to have tapped healthier MKO members to conduct terror attacks inside Iran.

Of course Iran has rejected the accusation against Mr. Assadi and demanded his swift release. (The international convention protecting his diplomatic immunity is, ironically, named after the capital of the European country where he was posted to.) His prosecution comes at a time when there are hopes the parties to the Iran deal could move to revive the agreement in light of the change of administration in the United States. When Mr. Borrell advocated “maxim diplomacy” with Iran, he said it should replace the former Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against the country.

That is a long way from happening. But Mr. Borrell has seemed eager to work to that end. He has already traveled to Russia and China, the two parties to the deal that are not Western-aligned. Crucially though, the simple question is: who is he speaking for when he speaks of “maximum diplomacy” with Iran while Union members are holding an Iranian diplomat?

The Union may justify by saying it cannot impose policy on individual members, which would take us back to the inherent absurdity at the heart of the EU. If Union members can do something that is contrary to stated Union policy, how can they exist as a union?! The EU can either want to pursue “maximum diplomacy” with Iran or hold an Iranian diplomat hostage. It cannot do both at the same time.

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Iranian diplomat was set up using a demented woman and her small cult 

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https://iran-interlink.org/wordpress/harming-iran-eu-relation-by-using-mek/

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK . Tehran Summons Belgian Envoy

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEKPress TV, February 09 2021:… The detention and the ensuing judicial process was in line with the plots hatched the Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO) terrorist group with the goal of harming Iran-Europe relations. He said even statements by certain Belgian authorities and the judicial process were clearly reflective of the terror outfit’s rhetoric. The Iranian official further asked the Brussels government to respect humanitarian rules in dealing with Assadi and swiftly free the diplomat. Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK . Tehran Summons Belgian Envoy 

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEKUsing Mojahedin Khalq (aka MEK, MKO, Rajavi cult) to damage Iran EU relationship

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK . Tehran Summons Belgian Envoy

Tehran summons Belgian envoy to protest unlawful ruling against Iranian diplomat

Tehran has summoned the Belgian ambassador to protest the 20-year jail term handed down by an Antwerp court against an Iranian diplomat on baseless charge, stressing that the Islamic Republic does not recognize the ruling, which violates international law.

The Belgian envoy was called in to the Iranian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday to file Tehran’s “strong representations” with Brussels over the unlawful verdict issued in the case of Assadollah Assadi.

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK

At the meeting, the Foreign Ministry’s director-general for Western Europe slammed the ruling as a violation of international law, which disregards Belgium’s commitments to the Islamic Republic.

Earlier this month, a court in the Belgian city of Antwerp handed down the 20-year jail sentence to Assadi, claiming that he had plotted a supposed attack against a gathering of the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MKO) anti-Iran terrorist cult in Paris in 2018.

Tehran has rejected the verdict and said it was a result of Belgium’s falling under the influence of the anti-Iran MKO terror group, which is freely active on Europe’s soil.

Assadi’s arrest, trial and sentencing is a breach of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and thus lacks legitimacy, the official added.

The detention and the ensuing judicial process was in line with the plots hatched the Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO) terrorist group with the goal of harming Iran-Europe relations.

He said even statements by certain Belgian authorities and the judicial process were clearly reflective of the terror outfit’s rhetoric.

The Iranian official further asked the Brussels government to respect humanitarian rules in dealing with Assadi and swiftly free the diplomat.

In turn, the Belgian ambassador said he would submit Tehran’s note of protest to the government in Brussels.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry has slammed the “unlawful” jail term issued in Belgium against an Iranian diplomat as a “clear violation” of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, saying Tehran is making all-out efforts to clear him of the charges and secure his release as soon as possible.

“Iran regards the arrest, the legal procedures and the verdict issued against Assadollah Assadi as unlawful and a blatant violation of international law, specifically the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations,” the ministry’s Public Relations Department said in a statement on Tuesday.

The ministry said it had pursued all political, intelligence and legal channels to secure the freedom of the Iranian diplomat and has protested to the governments of Germany, Austria and Belgium over the illegal detention and holds them accountable for the repercussions of the arrest.

“The Foreign Ministry reserves its right to follow up on the issue through legal and diplomatic channels and, on this basis, [necessary] measures are being taken,” the statement said.

In June 2018, Belgian authorities said that the Belgian police had intercepted a car carrying homemade explosives and a detonation device, claiming that Assadi had handed the materials to two people in Belgium earlier.

Assadi, himself, was apprehended in Germany the next day and told he could not apply his diplomatic immunity.

Dimitri de Beco, the Iranian diplomat’s defense lawyer, said back then that the plaintiffs were turning the case into a political trial on behalf of the MKO, the most hated terror group in Iran.

The MKO has conducted many assassinations and bombings against Iranian officials and civilians since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. It notoriously sided with former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein during the 1980-88 war that he had imposed on Iran.

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK . Tehran Summons Belgian Envoy

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Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomat

Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomatMehr News, Tehran, February 05 2021:… The West’s support for the anti-Iran terrorist group of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq Organisation (MKO), showed once again itself in the form of convicting an Iranian diplomat by the name of Assadollah Assadi, on baseless charges to 20 years in prison. The Iranian government believes that the plot against Assadi was initially designed by the Israeli Mossad. The Iranian diplomat was convicted Thursday of masterminding a thwarted bomb attack against the exiled MKO terror group, which has brutally assassinated and killed more than 12,000 Iranian officials and civilians since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979. Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomat 

Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomatAlbanian MEK and Mossad Definitely Together On Assassination

Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomat 

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK 

Tehran condemns Belgian court ruling against Iranian diplomat

TEHRAN, Feb. 04 (MNA) – Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman said that the Islamic Republic strongly condemns Belgian court ruling against Iranian diplomat.
Saeed Khatibzadeh made the remarks on Wednesday, noting that the Islamic Republic strongly condemns the 20-year prison sentence given to Iranian diplomat Assadollah Asadi by a court in Antwerp, Belgium.

He went on to say that Assadollah Assadi was tried while his detention was illegal and against the rules and procedures of the international community and the provisions of the 1961 Vienna Convention.

He added that Belgium and some European countries have adopted such a measure under the influence of the MKO terror group, noting that Tehran will resort to all diplomatic means to safeguard the rights of the diplomat and hold European countries accountable for this gross violation of international law.

In violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, a court in Belgium has sentenced an Iranian diplomat to 20 years behind bars on the charges that Iran had previously rejected.

The West’s support for the anti-Iran terrorist group of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq Organisation (MKO), showed once again itself in the form of convicting an Iranian diplomat by the name of Assadollah Assadi, on baseless charges to 20 years in prison.

The Iranian government believes that the plot against Assadi was initially designed by the Israeli Mossad.

The Iranian diplomat was convicted Thursday of masterminding a thwarted bomb attack against the exiled MKO terror group, which has brutally assassinated and killed more than 12,000 Iranian officials and civilians since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979.

MNA/FNA 13991116000743

News Code 169507

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Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomat 

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK 

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https://iran-interlink.org/wordpress/trial-or-mko-propaganda-false-alarm-in-eu-assassination-in-tehran/

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in Tehran

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in TehranPress TV, November 28 2020:… De Beco also added that the plaintiffs were turning the case into a political trial on behalf of the MKO. The MKO has conducted many assassinations and bombings against Iranian officials and civilians since the 1979 victory of Iran’s Islamic Revolution. It notoriously sided with former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein during his 1980-88 war on Iran. Out of the nearly 17,000 Iranians killed in terrorist assaults since the Revolution, about 12,000 fell victim to the MKO’s acts of terror. Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in Tehran 

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in TehranCovert strikes against Iran recount Israeli campaign against Iraq

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in Tehran

Iranian diplomat refuses to attend ‘political trial’ in Belgium

An Iranian diplomat, who was arrested back in 2018 on the false charges of being linked to a bomb attack plot in the French capital of Paris, has refused to turn up for trial in Belgium.

In June 2018, Belgian authorities said that Iranian diplomat Assadollah Assadi had been arrested in Germany over suspicions of plotting a bomb attack on a meeting of the terrorist Mujahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) in Paris attended by US President Donald Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and several former European and Arab ministers.

The authorities added that Belgian police had intercepted the suspect, along with a 38-year-old man and a 33-year-old woman, in Belgium with 500 grams of the homemade explosive TATP and a detonation device found in their car.

Germany extradited to Belgium the 46-year-old diplomat in defiance of Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961.

Dimitri de Beco, the Iranian diplomat’s defense lawyer, said he would be representing his client and that Assadi did not attend the court on Friday as he was seeking diplomatic immunity.

De Beco also added that the plaintiffs were turning the case into a political trial on behalf of the MKO.

The next session of the trial is scheduled to take place on Thursday and the court is then expected to adjourn its verdict before ruling early next year.

Following Assadi’s apprehension in Berlin, the director general for Europe affairs at Iran’s Foreign Ministry met German ambassador Michael Klor-Berchtold to convey the Islamic Republic’s strong opposition to the arrest, detention and extradition of the Iranian diplomat and said the move was part of a manufactured plot by those opposing Iran-Europe relations and was planned by the MKO itself.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also said that the claims about Assadi constituted a “sinister false flag ploy.”

The MKO has conducted many assassinations and bombings against Iranian officials and civilians since the 1979 victory of Iran’s Islamic Revolution. It notoriously sided with former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein during his 1980-88 war on Iran.

Out of the nearly 17,000 Iranians killed in terrorist assaults since the Revolution, about 12,000 fell victim to the MKO’s acts of terror.

The terrorist outfit was on the US list of terrorist organizations until 2012. Major European countries, including France, have also removed it from their blacklists. The anti-Iran terrorists enjoy freedom of activity in the US and Europe, and even hold meetings with American and EU officials.

Western and European countries have also kept silent about the latest targeted killing of Iranian physicist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh by terrorists in his vehicle in a small city east of the capital Tehran.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry roundly condemned the terror attack, saying there were “serious indications” of the Israeli regime’s role in the assassination.

Fakhrizadeh’s name was mentioned multiple times in a presentation in 2018 by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, during which he repeated baseless claims about the Iranian nuclear program.

Netanyahu described the scientist as the director of Iran’s nuclear program and threatened, “Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh.”

The Tel Aviv regime has made several attempts over the past years to throw a wrench in Tehran’s peaceful nuclear work.

The regime has been behind the assassination of several Iranian nuclear scientists. It has also conduced cyberattacks on Iranian nuclear sites.

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in Tehran 

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK 

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Covert strikes against Iran recount Israeli campaign against IraqMossad and MEK (Rajavi cult, Mojahedin Khalq) Assassinated Iran’s Top Nuclear Scientist Majid Shahriari

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https://iran-interlink.org/wordpress/iran-allegations-against-asadullah-assadi-mek-fabrications/

Iran: Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK Fabrications

Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK Fabrications Iran Front Page, October 20 2020:… The Islamic Republic of Iran considers the arrest of Mr Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian diplomat in Europe, as a move that is basically unlawful and in blatant violation of international practices and the contents of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations,” Khatibzadeh said. Assadi, who will go on trial in late November, was charged with planning to bomb a Paris rally of the MKO terrorist group. Tehran says European states harbour MEK, which is responsible for the killing of 17,000 Iranians, according to Iran’s official statistics. Iran: Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK Fabrications 

Mossad info, MEK sources – Resorting to bribery, to blame Iran for AMIAMossad info, MEK sources – Resorting to bribery, to blame Iran for AMIA

Iran: Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK Fabrications

Iran Denies Allegations against Its Diplomat Arrested in Belgium

Harming Iran EU Relation By Using MEK 

By IFP Editorial Staff

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh has rejected the allegation that the Iranian diplomat arrested in Belgium has threatened Belgian officials with retaliation, describing the claim, raised by Reuters and some other European media, as shallow fabrication.

Such baseless reports are fabricated and published so as to be capitalized on in the future,” Khatibzadeh said in a Wednesday statement, describing such allegations as part of a media campaign.

The Islamic Republic of Iran considers the arrest of Mr Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian diplomat in Europe, as a move that is basically unlawful and in blatant violation of international practices and the contents of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations,” Khatibzadeh said.

Accordingly, he added, Iran has already conveyed its strong official protest to relevant European authorities.

“We believe the violation of Mr Assadi’s diplomatic immunity and his arrest and prosecution in Belgium is an unacceptable heresy. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs still considers the countries involved in this case to be responsible for violating the Iranian diplomat’s rights, and reserves the right to a proportionate response,” he added.

Assadi, who will go on trial in late November, was charged with planning to bomb a Paris rally of the MKO terrorist group.

Tehran says European states harbour MEK, which is responsible for the killing of 17,000 Iranians, according to Iran’s official statistics.

The group was on the United States’ terrorism list from 1997 to 2012, but its rallies in recent years have been headlined by the likes of US President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani and former US national security adviser John Bolton.

Assadi was arrested while on holiday in Germany and handed over to Belgium. The Western European nation says it arrested two of his suspected accomplices with an explosive and a detonation device.

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Iran: Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK Fabrications

Mossad and MEK Terrorist behand plot against Iranian diplomat 

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Iranian diplomat and the alleged terror plot on MEK Gathering in Paris

Borzou Dargahi, Independent, February 05 2019:… MEK, a bizarre but influential Iranian political cult dedicated to overthrowing the government in Tehran. The group has cultivated strong ties to the Trump administration and others in Washington, as well as to Saudi Arabia, Iran’s arch-nemesis. Several leading Trump administration figures including John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani spoke at the 30 June event, though neither had yet been named to Mr Trump’s team.

Allegations Against Asadullah Assadi MEK FabricationsMossad admits cooperating with Mojahedin Khalq (MKO, MEK, NCRI …) terror group over anti-Iran plot

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Intercepted chats tie Iranian diplomat to alleged Paris terror plot, official says

European security officials have intercepted communications that suggest an Iranian diplomat was not only involved in an alleged plot last year to bomb a meeting of Tehran opponents outside Paris, but coordinated efforts with colleagues back in Iran, a well-placed western official told The Independent.

The communications between Iranian diplomat Asadollah Asadi and counterparts in Iran were described as text messages, or chats, that have been collected by European intelligence services.

“Evidence of his contacts with the regime are recorded chats,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity while disclosing sensitive information.

An Iranian official dismissed the claims of evidence, insisting that the alleged Paris plot and others in Europe were fabricated to put pressure on Tehran as it faces off against the US and regional adversaries Israel and Saudi Arabia.

The French case is among several alleged plots carried out by Iranians on European soil that have strained relations between Tehran and European nations, and potentially jeopardised a commitment to uphold the nuclear deal penned in 2015 but abandoned last year by the administration of Donald Trump.


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Over the weekend, UK, French and German officials unveiled a bartering system called Instex, which is meant to allow trade between Iran and Europe that bypasses US controls on the global financial system. A European official called Instex “a small but concrete step to respond to US unilateralism”.

But Iran’s judiciary chief Sadeq Amoli Larijani quickly rejected the conditions for the exchange that include complying with global anti-money-laundering rules and curtailing its missile programme.

Taken together, Iran’s dissatisfaction with Europe’s attempts to resume business with the Islamic republic and European anger over alleged Iranian clandestine operations targeting dissidents and its missile programme threaten to diminish support for the nuclear deal, which promises Iran normalised trade ties in exchange for putting limits on its atomic programme.

Iranian media described a tense 8 January meeting in Tehran between European and Iranian diplomats. Europeans sought to deliver a complaint about Iranian missiles, while Iranians demanded an apology for a lack of progress on upholding the deal and for harbouring terrorist groups.

The next day the EU placed Iranian deputy minister of intelligence Saeid Hashemi-Moqaddam as well as Mr Asadi on a list of sanctioned individuals.

Mr Asadi, who served as diplomat in the Iranian embassy in Vienna, is currently in detention in Belgium, facing terrorism charges. He allegedly handed powerful plastic explosives to a Belgian-Iranian couple to use against a 30 June gathering of the Mujahedin-e-Khalq organisation, or MEK, a bizarre but influential Iranian political cult dedicated to overthrowing the government in Tehran.


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The group has cultivated strong ties to the Trump administration and others in Washington, as well as to Saudi Arabia, Iran’s arch-nemesis. Several leading Trump administration figures including John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani spoke at the 30 June event, though neither had yet been named to Mr Trump’s team.

According to the unnamed western official, the intercepts provide strong evidence of Mr Asadi’s involvement in the foiled plot to bomb the Paris gathering but don’t confirm whether the top echelons of the regime knew about the scheme.

In an interview published last month by the semi-official Iranian ISNA news organisation, Iran’s former ambassador to Germany, Ali Majedi, said the evidence that the Europeans had collected against Mr Asadi would be difficult to ignore, though he declined to specify the evidence, and how he knew about it.

“European countries have tabled evidence that cannot easily be dismissed, although they cannot easily prove it either,” he was quoted as saying.

The Iranian official suggested Mr Majedi had an axe to grind because he was withdrawn from his job in Germany in November. “Claims by Mr Majedi are criticised inside Iran as political, as he was recently removed from his post as ambassador,” the official said.

The alleged Paris operation, along with alleged plots by regime operatives against Iranian Arab exiles in the Netherlands and Denmark, prompted EU sanctions against Iran’s ministry of intelligence and security last year. Another alleged foiled plot against the the MEK compound in Albania prompted the Nato member to expel two senior diplomats last month.

Last week, German authorities reported that a 47-year-old Iranian dissident in Berlin had claimed he was beaten by unnamed masked men speaking Persian in what he told police he believed was an attack related to his political activities.

Iran has challenged Europe to produce evidence of the plots, and has demanded the release of Mr Asadi, whom it insists enjoys diplomatic immunity. “Europeans detained this person and after several months they are still struggling to introduce evidence,” said the Iranian official. “His arrest in itself is against international law. If he was a normal citizen, his continued arrest without trial would be illegal, too.”

(End)

Trial Or MKO Propaganda? False alarm in EU, Assassination in Tehran 

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MSNBC_Massoud_KhodabandehThe MEK’s man inside the White House (Maryam Rajavi cult, Mojahedin Khalq)

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MEPs discuss Mojahedine-E Khalq (MEK) Threat in #Albania

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