Saeed Kamali Dehgahn, The Guardian, London, October 03 2018:… This is not the first time Iran International has been heavily criticised. The television previously gave extensive live coverage to a rally by the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MeK), a cult-like organisation that espouses regime change and has links to Saudi Arabia. The controversy over the coverage of the MeK rally led to the channel ceasing its cooperation …
Ofcom investigates TV network over interview praising attack in Iran
Saudi-linked Iran International TV gave airtime to supporter of assault that killed 24 at parade
Ofcom is investigating a UK-based Saudi-linked television network after it gave airtime to the spokesman for an extremist separatist group who praised last month’s terrorist attack in the Iranian city of Ahvaz, which killed at least 24 people, including children.
The investigation by the media watchdog highlights the growing influence of Saudi-linked stations operating from London, which is increasingly becoming a key media battle ground for the proxy wars in the Middle East.
Iran International TV, based in Chiswick, west London, was the first Farsi language media organisation to interview Yacoub Hor al-Tostari, a spokesman for the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahwaz, after the 22 September attack.
Tostari said the National Resistance of Ahvaz, an umbrella group linked to the Struggle Movement, had carried out the attack, and praised the killings, later condemned by the UN security council as a “heinous and cowardly terrorist attack”, which he said had hit “legitimate” military targets.
“Today’s operation was carried out by the National Resistance of Ahvaz against legitimate targets, which are Revolutionary Guards, and military members of the Islamic Republic,” he said.
Told that civilians were among the dead, he said: “What was targeted was the viewing platform [of the military parade] where officials stood. Ordinary people were not on that platform.” He added: “I insist that armed resistance is part of our resistance.”
Tostari’s group later backpedalled on the claim. The Ahvaz attack has also been claimed by Isis.
Ofcom confirmed it was investigating the interview. “We are assessing this news programme as a priority against our broadcasting rules,” a spokesperson said. It has not opened a formal investigation.
Iran’s ambassador to the UK, Hamid Baeidinejad, tweeted that the embassy had filed a complaint.
Iran International is one of an increasing number of London-based television stations backed by Middle Eastern interests that are trying to influence audiences thousands of miles away. Questions have been raised over the network’s funding and its links to Saudi Arabia, Tehran’s arch-enemy. Many Iranians compared the interview to giving airtime to Isis after a terrorist attack in the west.
Rob Beynon, the acting head of the channel, stood by the decision to broadcast the interview and said it had referred to the Ahvaz shooting as a “terrorist attack”.
“We and the BBC [Persian] and Radio Farda interviewed the same person during that day and we’ve already said that it was done because we wanted to find out the background to it,” he told the Guardian. “There isn’t a ban on interviewing that person as far as I am aware.”
He said his network would comply with Ofcom but said he did not think the interview with Tostari had broken the rules since he said the spokesman did not incite violence.
“[Tostari] explained his reasons as he saw them and he was challenged by the presenter,” he said. “It doesn’t mean that we agree with him.”
Iran International was launched in May 2017 shortly before presidential elections in Iran. Two other Farsi-language networks, BBC Persian and Manoto TV, are also based in London. Iran International pays generous salaries – one employee said pay was double that offered by competitors – and its 100-strong staff works out of a modern newsroom and studio.
Iran International’s licence is held by its parent entity, a company called Global Media Circulating, according to Ofcom’s records. Adel Al-Abdulkarim, one of the company’s two directors, is also a shareholder, and a Saudi national with a history of working with Saudi Arabian media moguls such as Abdulrahman al-Rashed, the former general manager of the Saudi-owned Al Arabiya, and formerly editor-in-chief of newspaper Alsharq Alwsat.
A source who has worked with the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, said Iran International’s money came from the Saudi royal court, estimated to be about $250m (£192m).
“The money is coming from Saudi Arabia, it is from the royal court,” the source said, questioning whether private investors would risk that amount of money with such a small chance of return.
Beynon did not answer questions on the channel’s funding. He said the day-to-day editorial and technical operations of Iran International were managed by DMA Media Ltd, which is a UK news company owned by private UK shareholders. The Guardian has asked Beynon to explain the precise relationship between DMA Media Ltd and Global Media Circulating.
He added: “Iran International can be judged by its output and the editorial policy implicit in that. It is not reflective of the views of any government and aims to provide news and views of interest to all Farsi speakers.”
This is not the first time Iran International has been heavily criticised. The television previously gave extensive live coverage to a rally by the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MeK), a cult-like organisation that espouses regime change and has links to Saudi Arabia.
The controversy over the coverage of the MeK rally led to the channel ceasing its cooperation with Mehdi Jami, a respected journalist who spoke out on internal discontent over the decision. At least one journalist left the network after the coverage of the Ahvaz attack.
Shia-majority Iran and Sunni monarchy Saudi Arabia are engaged in proxy conflicts across the Middle East, including in Syria and Yemen. Iran has its own Arabic-language television, Al Alam, which broadcast its own version of events.
It is irked by London becoming a hub for exiled channels it views as subversive. Manoto TV is perceived to be close to monarchists, focusing extensively on pre-revolutionary Iran and depicting the era as glamorous. It lost £33m in 2016 and 2017, according to its latest accounts. Manoto has not disclosed its sources of funding since 2012 and did not respond to a request to explain these.
In 2012, Iran’s English-language state-run Press TV was forced off air in the UK after Ofcom revoked its licence for broadcasting forced confessions of a journalist imprisoned in Iran.
Saudi Arabia Bankrolled Iran’s MEK with Tons of Gold, Rolexes (Mojahedin Khalq, MKO, NCRI, Rajavi cult)
Sputnick and Press TV, September 19 2018:… Massoud Khodabandeh explained that 3 tons of solid gold, a minimum of four suitcases of customized Rolex watches and fabric that had been used to cover the Muslim holy site of Kaaba in Mecca were among the commodities shipped from Saudi Arabia to MEK operatives in Baghdad as …
Saudi Arabia Bankrolled Iran’s MEK with Tons of Gold, Rolexes – Report
Sputnick, September 19 2018
Link to the source
A former high-ranking MEK official confirmed long-held suspicions that Saudi Arabia has been financing the political-militant group bent on violent regime change in Iran through sophisticated channels to provide the group with valuables like gold and Rolex watches, according to a new report.
In an interview with Jordanian news outlet Al-Bawaba Tuesday, a former MEK member who oversaw the transfer of hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of materials explained how the group has stayed financially afloat.
Massoud Khodabandeh explained that 3 tons of solid gold, a minimum of four suitcases of customized Rolex watches and fabric that had been used to cover the Muslim holy site of Kaaba in Mecca were among the commodities shipped from Saudi Arabia to MEK operatives in Baghdad as part of the scheme. From there, the valuables would be sold on the black market in Jordan’s capital, Amman, to Saudi-aligned merchants.
“Aided by two Iraqi and two Saudi representatives, Khodabandeh smuggled three trucks filled with gold bars from Saudi Arabia to Baghdad. He estimated that each truck held about a ton of gold, making the shipment’s contemporary worth almost $200 million,” Al-Bawaba reports. After selling the gold, funds would be sent to offshore MEK bank accounts, Khodabandeh said.
The report says that the US also supported the MEK by providing the UN Refugee Agency with $20 million in order to transport thousands of MEK members from Iraq to Albania. The US then gave Albania funds to construct a “military-style facility for the MEK, in which it is currently holed up.”
War hawks in Washington point to the MEK as the most viable proxy force for bringing down the Iranian government. The group doesn’t support within Iran, according to Saeed Jalili, a Tehran-based writer. “I have not heard anyone asking them [MEK] to make a comeback in Iran or anything like that,” Jalili told Al Jazeera in March.
“There is a viable opposition to the rule of the ayatollahs. And that opposition is centered in this room today,” John Bolton, once the US ambassador to the UN and now White House national security adviser, said during a speech at an MEK conference in Paris last year.
Bolton went so far as to conclude his remarks by predicting the overthrow of the Iranian government by the end of 2018, according to Iranian expat journalist Bahman Kalbasi. “Any that’s why, before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran,” Bolton said to a round of roaring applause.
— Bahman Kalbasi (@BahmanKalbasi) March 22, 2018
“We resettled a lot of the MEK people from Iraq in Albania,” Daniel Benjamin, the State Department’s counterterrorism coordinator at the time, told Foreign Policy in April. “It became the goal of the US government to get them out of there. That is the reason they were delisted” from the US list of terror groups in 2012.
“It happened under the secretary’s authority, not because they had met the requirements for not being a terrorist group,” said Benjamin, who is now director of the Center For International Understanding at Dartmouth University. Hillary Clinton was the US secretary of state from 2009 to 2013, before John Kerry assumed the post until the arrival of the Trump administration in 2017.
“Bolton is positively predisposed to the MEK,” a foreign policy Capitol Hill staffer told Foreign Policy in April, when Bolton joined the White House as national security adviser. “They will have some access to this White House at least.”
‘Saudis gave MKO gold, Rolex watches worth hundreds of millions of dollars’
Press TV, September 19 2018
Link to the source
An ex-member of the Mujahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) has shed light on Saudi Arabia’s financial support for the anti-Iran terror group, explaining how the Riyadh regime funneled, in one instance, gold bars and other valuables worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the notorious outfit.
Massoud Khodabandeh, a former high-ranking MKO element, made the revelations in an interview with Jordanian news website al-Bawaba released on Tuesday.
He said officials of the Saudi spy agency, formerly led by Prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud, gave the MKO three tons of solid gold, at least four suitcases of custom Rolex watches as well as fabric covering the Ka’aba, Islam’s holiest shrine.
Khodabandeh personally oversaw the transfer.
Gold and other valuable commodities, he added, were later sold in black markets in the Jordanian capital, Amman, via Saudi-linked businessmen and the money went to offshore accounts linked to the MKO.
Khodabandeh also noted that he had himself smuggled three truckloads of gold bars from Saudi Arabia to Baghdad with the help of two Iraqi and two Saudi representatives.
Each truck held about a ton of gold, “making the shipment’s contemporary worth almost $200 million.”
“After a few days I arranged for it to go to Amman to be sold,” he said. “We knew a few businessmen who could do this for us and move the money to offshore accounts.”
The ex-MKO member further unveiled that some of the money the organization received from its dealings was allocated to the purchase of military vehicles.
Through the Saudi-linked businessmen in Amman, he said, the MKO “bought large fleets of Toyota semi-military vehicles and many other logistical needs.”
Khodabandeh also stressed that in addition to regular payments from former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, the MKO also received sums from Iraqi oil exports to Britain.
He explained that after the fall of Saddam, Prince Turki became the terror outfit’s main supporter.
“I would say that after the fall of Saddam, the MKO which was then being run by Massoud [Rajavi] under the patronage of Saddam, changed to the organization run by Maryam [Rajavi] under the patronage of Prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud,” he said.
The MKO is listed as a terrorist organization by much of the international community. Its members fled Iran in 1986 for Iraq, where it enjoyed Saddam’s backing.
The MKO has carried out numerous attacks against Iranian civilians and government officials over the past three decades.
Out of the nearly 17,000 Iranians killed in terrorist assaults since the victory of Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, about 12,000 have fallen victim to MKO’s acts of terror.
In 2012, the US State Department removed the MKO from its list of designated terrorist organizations.
A few years ago, MKO members were relocated from their Camp Ashraf in Iraq’s Diyala Province to Camp Hurriyet (Camp Liberty), a former US military base in Baghdad, and later sent to Albania.
Elsewhere, the al-Bawaba report said that the US had paid $20 million to the UN Refugee Agency to transfer thousands of MKO terrorists from Iraq to Albania, and had even given Tirana funds to build a military-style facility for the group.
The shadowy cult Trump advisors tout as an alternative to the Iranian government
Channel 4 News, September 07 2018:… National Security Advisor John Bolton said US policy should be regime change in Iran. He and other Trump advisers have long touted a shadowy exiled cult as an alternative to the Iranian government. The Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) has had a very active propaganda wing for years, but now they have influence at the highest level. They also have a secretive camp in Albania …
6 Sep 2018
The shadowy cult Trump advisors tout as an alternative to the Iranian government
Lindsey HilsumInternational Editor
President Trump sees the Iran as America’s biggest enemy. And before assuming office, his National Security Advisor John Bolton said US policy should be regime change in Iran.
He and other Trump advisers have long touted a shadowy exiled cult as an alternative to the Iranian government. The Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) has had a very active propaganda wing for years, but now they have influence at the highest level. They also have a secretive camp in Albania, 30km from the capital, Tirana.
Trump sees Iran’s regime as America’s biggest enemy – and his advisers have long touted a shadowy exiled cult as an alternative to the Iranian government. @LindseyHilsum has been to their secretive camp in Albania to investigate. https://www.channel4.com/news/the-shadowy-cult-trump-advisors-tout-as-an-alternative-to-the-iranian-government …
Trump sees Iran's regime as America's biggest enemy – and his advisers have long touted a shadowy exiled cult as an alternative to the Iranian government. @LindseyHilsum has been to their secretive camp in Albania to investigate. https://t.co/4npOdh5obE
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) September 6, 2018
The MEK’s man inside the White House (Maryam Rajavi cult, Mojahedin Khalq)
Richard Engel, NBC, May 25 2018:… How did a fringe Iranian opposition group with a history of assassinating Americans get so cozy with the likes of John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani? By paying them thousands to speak at its events, where they advocate for MEK-led regime change inside Iran …
Link to the source
A report by Richard Engel
On assignment with Richard Engel
How did a fringe Iranian opposition group with a history of assassinating Americans get so cozy with the likes of John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani? By paying them thousands to speak at its events, where they advocate for MEK-led regime change inside Iran.
VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: We obtained never-before-seen footage of the MEK's secret base in Albania. The MEK is an Iranian opposition group with a history of terrorism. More recently it's paid thousands to @AmbJohnBolton & @RudyGiuliani. More tonight at 9PM ET @MSNBC @RichardEngel pic.twitter.com/teaGhQeVZy
— On Assignment with Richard Engel (@OARichardEngel) May 25, 2018
On MSNBC @OARichardEngel I explained that no decent American intelligence officer would say MEK is trustworthy because it is a Destructive Cult.
Examining how @AmbJohnBolton and @RudyGiuliani were paid to speak for Maryam Rajavi. pic.twitter.com/U83F12h5ko
— Massoud khodabandeh (@ma_khodabandeh) May 27, 2018
.@realDonaldTrump has always been a gambler and a showman. But now — with high-stakes bets from #Iran to #NorthKorea — he's gambling with US national security. #OnAssignment pic.twitter.com/y2E5xApnQx
— On Assignment with Richard Engel (@OARichardEngel) May 27, 2018
MEK expert @joanne_stocker estimates that @AmbJohnBolton has been paid upwards of $180K by the group to speak at its events. Now he's in a position to advocate for it from inside the White House. @RichardEngel #OnAssignment pic.twitter.com/kxoi2FQ5dn
— On Assignment with Richard Engel (@OARichardEngel) May 27, 2018
"It's pretty remarkable that a group with American blood on its hands — even if it is a former terrorist group — has contacts like @RudyGiuliani and @AmbJohnBolton," says former State Dept. counterterrorism official @Benjamin05055. #OnAssignment @RichardEngel pic.twitter.com/EfX2sYQkOl
— On Assignment with Richard Engel (@OARichardEngel) May 27, 2018
Meet the MEK, a fringe Iranian opposition group with a history of assassinating Americans. Now it pays thousands to the likes of @AmbJohnBolton and @RudyGiuliani to speak at its events. @RichardEngel pic.twitter.com/08rFua1bPM
— On Assignment with Richard Engel (@OARichardEngel) May 27, 2018
False Flag Op In Albania Would Drive A Wedge Between The EU And Iran
Anne and Massoud Khodabandeh, Lobe Log, August 31 2018:… The question for America’s anti-Iran pundits currently is how to engineer distance between Europe and Iran. One way would be if it could be demonstrated that Iranian terrorism has reached Europe itself, a theme that Pompeo himself addresses at virtually every Iran-related opportunity. While rational observers recognise that any such activity would …
False Flag Op In Albania Would Drive A Wedge Between The EU And Iran
16 MEK graves in the public cemetery in Tirana, Albaniam in 2018 (Anne Khodabandeh)
President Trump’s floundering Iran policy was firmed up earlier this month when Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced a new ‘Iran Action Group’. According to Pompeo, “The Iran Action Group will be responsible [for] directing, reviewing, and coordinating all aspects of the State Department’s Iran-related activity, and will report directly to me.”
As the name indicates, action rather than diplomacy now tops the State Department’s agenda toward Iran. Action that will surely include increased sanctions, economic warfare, cyber warfare, inciting protest, and very possibly support for terrorist groups. Not a new repertoire. But Iran has proven remarkably vigilant and resilient in withstanding all these pressures, fending off various terrorist groups on its borders, some cities, and even an attack on the Majlis (parliament). More recently, attempts to subverteconomic protests in the country have come to nothing. Other means are called for.
As America pressures the European Union to line up behind its sanctions regime and end trade with Iran, there are indications that this could open another front for confronting Iran. The question for America’s anti-Iran pundits currently is how to engineer distance between Europe and Iran. One way would be if it could be demonstrated that Iranian terrorism has reached Europe itself, a theme that Pompeo himself addresses at virtually every Iran-related opportunity.
While rational observers recognise that any such activity would be political suicide for Iran, we are clearly not living in rational times. There are signs that the groundwork for a covert false-flag operation have been in place for some time that would blame Iran for an atrocity conducted outside its borders.
Such a possibility was hinted at in June when an Iranian diplomat was arrested in Germany over an alleged bomb plot on the eve of President Rouhani’s visit. Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted “how convenient.” Iran claimed that the Belgian couple found to be behind the fake plot were Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) activists. The target for the bombing was the MEK rally in Paris which would then presumably be blamed on Iran. How convenient indeed.
That the MEK is named in this way is no surprise. While other terrorist groups have been contained by Iran, MEK has proven tenacious, due in main to the support it receives from Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the U.S. This is also due to its cult conditions which enslave and brainwash its members. But the fact that MEK is now based in Albania, far away from Iran’s border, might have doomed the group to obscurity if MEK’s violent regime change agenda didn’t so closely coincide with the desires of hawks in the Trump administration.
Trump, deliberately or unwittingly, has surrounded himself with MEK supporters. John Bolton, National Security Advisor, is a long-time MEK advocate and Rudy Giuliani, currently tackling Trump’s legal problems, has regularly spoken at MEK rallies. Now with former CIA man Pompeo as Secretary of State and taking a hard-line regime-change stance in all but words, all that all that remains is for an action plan to be put in place.
It could be that this is already taking shape in Albania where the MEK has deliberately curated a false narrative through its own websites that Iran is sending agents to attack and kill its members. This narrative is then repeated as established fact by political supporters and paid advocates.
In July, Pompeo repeated ‘news’ of the alleged bomb plot and also referenced the MEK-manufactured allegation that two retired Iranian journalists had been sent by Iran to conduct terrorism against them in Albania. It was MEK itself that falsely tipped off policeto arrest the two innocent men. Building on this, Raymond Tanter, part of a cabal of mostly ex-CIA and former military officials who advocate for MEK, inserted this false information into a long article promoting the group MEK as bringers of peace and democracy to Iran. Nothing could be further from the truth.
MEK has a long history of covert as well as overt activities aimed at regime change against Iran. Over the years, when events were blamed on Iran, MEK often insinuated itself in various ways—as it did, for instance, in the 1994 bombing of the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires. After extensive investigation, the primary testimonyimplicating Iran’s leadership came from four high-ranking intelligence officers from MEK—specifically, Hadi Roshan Ravan, the chief witness who not coincidentally also served as the head of MEK intelligence. In 2013, Israel arrested a Swedish Iranian man, Ali Mansouri, who “confessed” to be spying for Iran in Tel Aviv. He turned out to be an MEK member. MEK’s role in publicizing intelligence on Iran’s nuclear program and alleged complicity with Israel in the murder of Iranian nuclear scientists is widely known. Whether or not MEK was directly involved in many of such activities or not, its propagandizing role is indisputable.
Since arriving in Albania between 2013 and 2016, MEK has already shown itself to be aggressive, criminal, and dangerous. Recently a scandal erupted after a British Channel 4 film crew, headed by prominent journalist Lindsey Hilsum, was assaulted by MEK operatives while filming outside the MEK’s closed camp in Manez, Albania. A few days later, Aaron Merat, a journalist with The Guardian, was also subjected to an assault by MEK operatives during his investigations. MEK accused them of being “agents of the Iranian regime.”
This news, shocking as it is, did not find an audience outside Albania. So far, so local. But it demonstrated the ease and impunity with which MEK uses violence when the outside world encroaches on its secrecy. Albanians were even more shocked that their security services tried to hide these events.
Interestingly the group’s self-portrayal of victimhood largely serves its own internal dynamics. MEK moved 2000+ members to a closed camp in Manez to prevent more members leaving the group. MEK leaders claim that Iran has sent various intelligence agents to Albania plot against them and kill them and the camp is their only protection. While this serves to frighten its own members and stiffen their thirty-year resolve to continue their struggle, it also fits the kind of false narrative that leads to the kind of false-flag operations that could be blamed on Iran.
Former CIA Director Pompeo’s Iran Action Group is a sub-group in the State Department answering only to him. This also favors the kind of covert operation with which the MEK is only too willing and able to engage. Worryingly, the attacks on foreign journalists could serve to escalate and accelerate secret plans already in place for a false-flag operation in Albania which would be blamed on Iran. The first victims would be MEK members. The next targets could be Albanian. And this time, in order to convince Europe that Iran is a dangerous sponsor of terrorism, people would die.
Albanian Police No Match For MEK Commanders Trained By Saddam’s Mukhabarat
Massoud Khodabandeh, Iranian.com, August 09 2018:… Afamily drama playing out in Albania has caught the attention of media and public opinion. But this is no ordinary drama. It is the story of Iranian born Mostafa and Mahboubeh Mohammadi, who are Canadian citizens and their twenty-one-year struggle to rescue their daughter from a dangerous terrorist cult. In 1997, Somayeh and …
Albanian Police No Match For MEK Commanders Trained By Saddam’s Mukhabarat
Afamily drama playing out in Albania has caught the attention of media and public opinion. But this is no ordinary drama. It is the story of Iranian born Mostafa and Mahboubeh Mohammadi, who are Canadian citizens and their twenty-one-year struggle to rescue their daughter from a dangerous terrorist cult.
In 1997, Somayeh and her brother Mohammad, were deceptively recruited into the violent extremist group, Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK). Somayeh was seventeen. They travelled to Iraq for a two week visit to the MEK training camp, and never returned home. Their parents were supporters of MEK and at first simply appealed directly to the group’s leaders for their children’s return to their studies and family. MEK ignored their requests.
It wasn’t until the fall of Saddam’s regime in 2003 that Mostafa was able to travel to Iraq independently of MEK and reach out to his children. He managed to rescue Mohammad and bring him back to Canada. But Somayeh was under constant supervision by MEK commanders who used coercive control to confuse and intimidate the girl. She was afraid to leave, even though she had written several times to the US Marines guarding the camp asking for help.
Somayeh and Mohammad Mohammadi in Camp Ashraf Iraq
Her parents made repeated attempts to meet freely with Somayeh, so they could reassure her of her future with them in Canada. MEK closed all doors to them and in doing so, alienated a whole family which had been ardent supporters. Mostafa had even volunteered to take part in the MEK orchestrated self-immolations in 2003 to protest the arrest in Paris of MEK leader Maryam Rajavi. He was only saved when a friend snatched the lighter from his hand after Mostafa had doused himself in petrol. Now, instead of returning Somayeh to Canada and having a family of active supporters for their cause, MEK has destroyed the life of a young woman and broken the hearts of her family.
Mostafa and Mahboubeh Mohammadi interviewed by Albanian media
Somayeh was brought to Albania with another 3,000 MEK after Iraq expelled the terrorist group. From their first arrival in Tirana in 2013, MEK members frightened ordinary citizens with their intimidatory behaviour. Intense and forceful but somehow disengaged, MEK members swept through the capital like a plague. In place of a de-radicalization programme, the Americans in charge of them allowed them to retreat behind the closed walls of a purpose-built terrorist training camp in a rural town, Manez in the district of Durres. In spite of this, over four hundred have managed to escape the group and are willing to endure hardship rather than continue to associate with MEK. One recent escapee described conditions inside MEK as “slavery”.
In this context, Mostafa and Mahboubeh are now in Tirana making another attempt to meet their daughter. This time, without the presence of MEK minders. They have appealed to the Albanian authorities to help them. They refused.
Instead, MEK has been allowed to go berserk, instigating a campaign of propaganda and intimidation that has created a real crisis for the country; for its citizens, its government and its security and law enforcement services.
Albanian media presents this as a family dispute. But there is no equivalence between the ordinary parents from Canada and the people who are surrounding Somayeh. These are people whose background reveals how dangerous they are. So that when the Albanian police are called to an incidence of public disorder, they are not expecting nor are they quipped through training or resources to deal with radicalised violent extremists trained by Saddam Hussein’s Republican Guards, many with blood on their hands. Yet this is what the government has imposed on them. Even the security and intelligence services of Albania are inadequately prepared to deal with the criminal unpredictability and unaccountability of MEK.
The MEK commanders and agents involved in delivering MEK’s version of Somayeh’s story are as follows:
The female commander, Jila Deyhim, was recruited as a student at Manchester University in the UK at the time of Iran’s 1979 Revolution. Her husband Ahmad Shadbakhti was killed in an armed clash with security forces in Tehran. Jila left their daughter in the UK to be raised by her brother Khosro Deyhim (aka Haji) in Newcastle Upon Tyne while she went to join MEK in Iraq.
Jila is the head of MEK Operations in Tirana. As well as being present when two MEK operatives publicly assaulted Mostafa in a street in Tirana, she organised for over 60 MEK to surround Police Station 4 in Tirana while two arrested MEK members were being questioned by police. Afterwards, JIla sent the 60 MEK to spread through the city to hunt down and intimidate and beat up ex-MEK members. (Local police officers, used to dealing with ordinary crimes and criminals, were so shocked by the MEK behaviour that they wrote to the Interior Ministry saying they are not equipped to deal with sixty potential suicide bombers and to ask that the security forces in charge of MEK make sure the police will not have to deal with these ‘guests of the state’ again.)
Historically, Jila served as a commander during the Kurdish massacres – Operation Morvarid (Pearl) in 1991 – as well as many other operations. Witnesses have given further testimony of her torturing and killing disaffected members in MEK/Saddam Hussein prisons in Camp Ashraf. Jila ‘graduated’ as a highly trained intelligence officer under Saddam Hussein’s security service. In addition, she undertook field training, tank driving, basic combat and SWAT command.
Jila Deyhim in Iraq and in Albania
Homayoun Deyhim – in the pink shirt assaulting Mostafa Mohammadi – is a brother of Jila. He studied Electrical Engineering in Newcastle University in the UK just before the Revolution. During the Revolution he went to India to study for an MSC. In India he worked for MEK, but was later recruited by Jila to go to Iraq.
Homayoun never achieved any significant rank, working mostly in the technical and repair departments. But he is famous inside MEK for agreeing to do anything to get promoted. Hence, on many occasions he was involved in punitive beating and humiliating of other members in Camp Ashraf. Homayoun undertook basic military training and Republican Guards operations training.
In Police Station 4 in Tirana after his arrest for assaulting Mostafa, Jila instructed Homayoun to claim that Mostafa had attacked him. They did not know at that time that there was videoed evidence from the scene which shows what actually happened.
Homayoun Deyhim in Iraq and Albania
Behzad Saffari from Isfahan went to the UK to study dentistry He was recruited by MEK and sent to Iraq after Rajavi moved there. He was injured in operation Eternal Light (Forough Javidan) in 1988 and brought back to London to recover before being sent back to Iraq. Witnesses allege that Behzad was involved in beatings in MEK prisons. Behzad cheated his family out of their life savings – which he gave to MEK – by falsely claiming to have left the organisation. His father sent money to family members in Canada, but it ended up in MEK accounts in the UK.
Behzad was involved in liaising with the UNHCR during the transfer process from Iraq to Albania. Former members recount how the UNHCR gave each individual 100 USD for the journey and after their arrival. When the members arrived in Tirana airport, Behzad took the $100 from each one of them and gave them one hundred Albanian LEK as local currency (around one US dollar).
Behzad is currently involved with the teams harassing ex-members and journalists in Tirana. Behzad Saffari is liaising with the MEK lawyer and answers to Jila Deyhim.
Behzad Saffari in Iraq and Albania
Ahmad Taba (aka Akbar), was a student in UMIST (Manchester) at the time of the Iranian Revolution in 1979. He was recruited by MEK to work in London and was then transferred to Iraq after Massoud Rajavi went there.
Ahmad was trained as a helicopter pilot by the Iraqi Army. He graduated from training by Saddam’s Republican Guards, which included guerrilla war and SWAT tactics. He also underwent a 9-month course with Saddam’s Mukhabarat, from which he graduated as an Intelligence officer. He killed many civilians in the Kurdish attacks and there are witnesses connecting him to the torture of prisoners in Camp Ashraf.
Ahmad Taba in Albania and Iraq
Somayeh Mohammadi herself has not left the MEK camps in Iraq or Albania for twenty-one years. She has no idea about what is happening in the outside world. It is incomprehensible that a woman who claims to be freely pursuing a political struggle for violent regime change against Iran is incapable of meeting alone with her parents to tell them face to face of her decision. Her parents, who know her so well, say it is clear she is afraid and not acting freely when she speaks out against them. Surrounded by the above MEK characters, it is clear that she is under control and is unable to speak or act for herself in any meaningful way. This is not a family dispute, Somayeh is a hostage.
Under the pressure of coercive control, experts can easily recognise in Somayeh a victim who, in the hands of MEK, has been forced to the edge of a cliff over which she may be pushed or fall. If it is subsequently reported that she has disappeared, committed suicide, drowned in a reservoir or otherwise come to harm, there can be no doubt that the government of Albania must be held accountable. She cannot save herself from harm, yet the possibility of MEK harming her is very high. She is in great danger.
Albania may be a failed state, but it is not a rogue state like Saddam’s Iraq. It is a state with pretensions to joining the European Union. The government can and should be held accountable for whatever happens to Somayeh Mohammadi. The way to prevent such an outcome is to step in and separate her from her captors.
Një dramë familjare që po shfaqet në Shqipëri ka tërhequr vëmendjen e mediave dhe opinionit publik. Por kjo nuk është një dramë e zakonshme. Është historia e çiftit iranian Mostafa dhe Mahboubeh Mohammadi, të cilët janë qytetarë kanadezë dhe prej njëzet e një vitesh luftojnë për të shpëtuar vajzën e tyre nga një kult i rrezikshëm terrorist.
Në vitin 1997, Somayeh dhe vëllai i saj Mohammad, u rekrutuan në mënyrë mashtruese në grupin e dhunshëm ekstremist, Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK). Somayeh ishte shtatëmbëdhjetë vjeç. Ata udhëtuan për në Irak për një vizitë dyjavore në kampin e trajnimit të MEK-ut dhe kurrë nuk u kthyen në shtëpi. Prindërit e tyre ishin përkrahës të MEK-ut dhe së pari thjesht iu drejtuan drejtuesve të grupit për kthimin e fëmijëve të tyre në familje. MEK i shpërfilli kërkesat e tyre.
Deri në rënien e regjimit të Sadamit në vitin 2003, Mostafa ishte në gjendje të udhëtojë në Irak pavarësisht nga MEK dhe të arrijë tek fëmijët e tij. Ai arriti të shpëtojë Muhammedin dhe ta çonte atë në Kanada. Por Somayeh ishte nën mbikëqyrje të vazhdueshme nga komandantët e MEK që përdorën kontrollin shtrëngues për të ngatërruar dhe frikësuar vajzën. Ajo kishte frikë të largohej, megjithëse kishte shkruar disa herë marinës amerikane që ruanin kampin duke kërkuar ndihmë.
Somayeh dhe Mohammad Mohammadi në Kampin Ashraf, Irak
Prindërit e saj bënin përpjekje të përsëritura për t’u takuar lirshëm me Somayeh dhe për ta rikthyer atë në familjen e tyre në Kanada. MEK i mbylli të gjitha dyert dhe duke vepruar kështu, tjetërsonte një familje të tërë që kishte qenë përkrahës i zjarrtë. Mostafa madje vullnetarisht mori pjesë në MEK-un në vitin 2003 për të protestuar kundër arrestimit në Paris të liderit MEK Maryam Rajavi. Por edhe pas kësaj sakrifice të Mostafa, MEK nuk e ktheu Somayeh në familjen e saj, por e mban mbyllur duke i shkatërruar jetën dhe duke thyer zemrat e familjarëve të saj.
Somayeh u soll në Shqipëri nga MEK pasi Iraku dëboi grupin terrorist. Që nga ardhja e tyre e parë në Tiranë në vitin 2013, anëtarët e MEK-ut i frikësuan qytetarët me sjelljen e tyre intimidatore dhe menjëherë ata u përhapën në qytet si një murtajë .
Në vend të një programi de-radikalizimi, amerikanët përgjegjës për to i lejuan të tërhiqen prapa mureve të mbyllura të një kampi stërvitjeje të ndërtuar në një qytet rural të Durrësit, Manëz. Përkundër kësaj, më shumë se katërqind njerëz kanë arritur të shpëtojnë nga grupi dhe janë të gatshëm të përballojnë vështirësitë në vend që të vazhdojnë të lidhen me MEK. Një i arratisur i kohëve të fundit përshkroi kushtet brenda MEK si “skllavëri”.
Mostafa dhe Mahboubeh janë tani në Tiranë duke bërë një përpjekje tjetër për të takuar vajzën e tyre. Ata u janë lutur autoriteteve shqiptare për t’i ndihmuar. Ata refuzuan.
Në vend të kësaj, MEK-u është lejuar të nxisë një fushatë të propagandës dhe frikësimit që ka krijuar një krizë të vërtetë për vendin, për qytetarët e saj, qeverinë e saj, sigurinë e saj dhe shërbimet e zbatimit të ligjit.
Mediat shqiptare e paraqesin këtë si një mosmarrëveshje familjare . Por nuk ekziston ekuivalenca mes prindërve të zakonshëm nga Kanadaja dhe njerëzve që po rrethojnë Somayeh. Këta janë njerëz, prejardhja e të cilëve zbulon sa të rrezikshëm janë. Kështu që kur policia shqiptare është thirrur në një incident të çrregullimit publik, ata as nuk janë përfshirë në trajnime apo burime për t’u marrë me ekstremistët e dhunshëm të radikalizuar të trajnuar nga rojet republikane të Saddam Husseinit, shumë prej të cilëve me gjak në duart e tyre. Megjithatë, kjo është ajo që qeveria u ka imponuar atyre. Edhe shërbimet e sigurisë dhe të inteligjencës së Shqipërisë nuk janë të përgatitur në mënyrë adekuate për t’u marrë me paparashikueshmërinë dhe mosgndërgjegjshmërinë kriminale të MEK.
Komandantët dhe agjentët e MEK-ut të përfshirë në dorëzimin e versionit të MEK-ut për historinë e Somayeh janë si më poshtë:
Komandantja femër, Jila Deyhim, u rekrutua si studente në Universitetin e Manchesterit në Mbretërinë e Bashkuar në kohën e Revolucionit të Iranit në 1979. Burri i saj Ahmad Shadbakhti u vra në një përleshje të armatosur me forcat e sigurisë në Teheran. Jila la vajzën e tyre në Britani të Madhe për t’u rritur nga vëllai i saj Khosro Deyhim (aka Haji) në Neëcastle Upon Tyne ndërsa ajo shkoi të bashkohej me MEK në Irak.
Jila është kreu i Operacioneve të MEK-ut në Tiranë. Përveç faktit se dy oficerë të MEK-ut e sulmuan publikisht Mostafën në një rrugë në Tiranë, ajo organizoi për më shumë se 60 MEK që rrethonin Stacionin e Policisë 4 në Tiranë, ndërsa dy anëtarë të arrestuar të MEK-ut u pyetën nga policia. Më pas, JIla dërgoi 60 MEK për tu përhapur nëpër qytet për të ndjekur, frikësuar dhe rrahur ish-anëtarët e MEK. (Zyrtarët e policisë lokale, të përdorur për t’u marrë me krimet e zakonshme dhe kriminelët, u tronditën aq shumë nga sjellja e MEK-ut dhe ata i shkruan Ministrisë së Brendshme duke thënë se nuk janë të pajisur për t’u marrë me gjashtëdhjetë vetë sulmues vetëvrasës potencialë”.)
Historikisht, Jila shërbeu si komandante gjatë masakrave kurde, në Operacionin Morvarid (Pearl) në 1991, si dhe shumë operacione të tjera. Dëshmitarët kanë dhënë dëshmi të mëtejshme për torturimin dhe vrasjen e anëtarëve të pakënaqur në burgjet e MEK. Jila ‘u diplomua’ si një oficere e inteligjencës e trajnuar nën shërbimin e sigurisë së Sadam Huseinit. Përveç kësaj, ajo ndërmori trainim në terren, vozitje tank, luftë bazë dhe komandë SWAT.
Jila Deyhim në Irak dhe në Shqipëri
Homayoun Deyhim, që sulmoi Mostafa Mohammadin është vëllai i Jilas. Ai studioi Inxhinieri Elektrike në Universitetin e Neëcastle në Mbretërinë e Bashkuar vetëm para Revolucionit. Gjatë Revolucionit ai shkoi në Indi për të studiuar për një MSC. Në Indi punoi për MEK, por më vonë u rekrutua nga Jila për të shkuar në Irak.
Homayoun kurrë nuk ka arritur ndonjë gradë të rëndësishme, duke punuar kryesisht në departamentet teknike dhe të riparimit. Por ai është i famshëm brenda MEK-ut për të rënë dakord të bëjë diçka për t’u promovuar. Prandaj, në shumë raste ai ishte i përfshirë në rrahjen dhe poshtërimin e anëtarëve të tjerë në Kampin Ashraf. Homayoun ndërmori trajnimin bazë ushtarak dhe trajnimin e operacioneve të rojave republikane.
Në Stacionin Policor 4 në Tiranë, pas arrestimit të tij për sulm ndaj Mostafës, Jila e udhëzoi Homayoun të pohonte se Mostafa e kishte sulmuar atë. Ata nuk e dinin në atë kohë se kishte prova video nga skena që tregon se çfarë ndodhi në të vërtetë.
Homayoun Deyhim në Irak dhe Shqipëri
Behzad Saffari nga Isfahan shkoi në Mbretërinë e Bashkuar për të studiuar stomatologji. Ai u rekrutua nga MEK dhe u dërgua në Irak pasi Rajavi u transferua atje. Ai u plagos në operacion Dritën e Përjetshme (Forough Javidan) në vitin 1988 dhe u kthye në Londër për t’u rimarr para se të kthehej në Irak. Dëshmitarët pohojnë se Behzad ishte i përfshirë në rrahje në burgjet e MEK. Behzad mashtroi familjen e tij nga kursimet e tyre të jetës, të cilën ai i dha MEK duke pretenduar në mënyrë të rreme që të kishte lënë organizatën. Babai i tij i dërgoi paratë anëtarëve të familjes në Kanada, por ajo përfundoi në llogaritë e MEK në Britani të Madhe.
Behzad ishte i përfshirë në kontakt me UNHCR-në gjatë procesit të transferimit nga Iraku në Shqipëri. Anëtarët e mëparshëm tregojnë se si UNHCR-ja i dha çdo individi 100 dollarë për udhëtimin dhe pas mbërritjes së tyre. Kur anëtarët arritën në aeroportin e Tiranës, Behzad mori 100 $ nga secili prej tyre dhe u dha atyre njëqind Lek Shqiptar si monedhë vendase (rreth një dollar amerikan).
Behzad aktualisht është i përfshirë me ekipet që kërcënojnë ish-anëtarë dhe gazetarë në Tiranë. Behzad Saffari po bashkëpunon me avokatin e MEK dhe përgjigjet ndaj Jila Deyhim.
Behzad Saffari në Irak dhe Shqipëri
Ahmad Taba (aka Akbar), ishte student në UMIST (Manchester) në kohën e Revolucionit iranian në 1979. Ai u rekrutua nga MEK për të punuar në Londër dhe më pas u transferua në Irak, pasi Massoud Rajavi shkoi atje.
Ahmedi u trajnua si një pilot helikopteri nga Ushtria Irakiane. Ai u diplomua nga rojet republikane të Sadamit, ku përfshiheshin luftërat guerile dhe taktikat SWAT. Ai gjithashtu pbëri një kurs 9-mujor me Mukhabaratin e Sadamit, nga i cili u diplomua si oficer i inteligjencës. Ai vrau shumë civilë në sulmet kurde dhe ka dëshmitarë që e lidhin atë me torturimin e të burgosurve në Kampin Ashraf.
Ahmed Taba në Shqipëri dhe Irak
Somayeh Mohammadi vetë nuk ka lënë kampet e MEK në Irak apo Shqipëri për njëzet e një vjet. Ajo nuk ka asnjë ide se çfarë po ndodh në botën e jashtme. Është e pakuptueshme që një grua që pretendon se po ndjek lirisht një luftë politike për ndryshimin e dhunshëm të regjimit kundër Iranit, është e paaftë të takohet me prindërit e saj për t’iu treguar ballë për ballë vendimin e saj. Prindërit e saj, të cilët e njohin atë aq mirë, thonë se është e qartë se ajo ka frikë dhe nuk vepron lirshëm kur flet kundër tyre. I rrethuar nga personazhet e MEK-ut të mësipërm, është e qartë se ajo është nën kontroll dhe nuk është në gjendje të flasë ose të veprojë për vete në ndonjë mënyrë kuptimplotë. Kjo nuk është një mosmarrëveshje familjare, Somayeh është një peng.
Nën presionin e kontrollit shtrëngues, ekspertët lehtë mund të njohin në Somayeh një viktimë e cila, në duart e MEK, është detyruar në buzë të një shkëmbi mbi të cilin mund të shtyhet ose të bjerë. Nëse më vonë raportohet se ajo është zhdukur, ka kryer vetëvrasje, është mbytur në një rezervuar, nuk ka dyshim se qeveria shqiptare duhet të mbajë përgjegjësi. Ajo nuk mund të shpëtojë veten nga dëmtimi, por mundësia e dëmtimit të MEK-ut është shumë e lartë. Ajo është në rrezik të madh.
Shqipëria mund të jetë një shtet i dështuar, por nuk është një shtet bandit si Iraku i Sadamit. Është një shtet me pretendime për t’u bashkuar me Bashkimin Evropian. Qeveria mundet dhe duhet të mbajë përgjegjësi për çfarëdo që ndodh me Somayeh Mohammadi. Mënyra për të parandaluar një rezultat të tillë është ndarja e saj nga MEK.
Burimi: The Iranian/ Gazeta impakt
PARALAJMËRIMI NGA IRANI: POLICIA SHQIPTARE E PAAFTË, MUXHAHEDINËT TË TRAJNUAR NGA GARDA E SADDAMIT
Publikuar tek: AKTUALITET, më 20:11 08-08-2018
Prej disa ditësh në mediat shqiptare qarkullon historia e një gruaje muxhahedine me banim në Shqipëri, e cila refuzon të bashkohet me prindërit e mbërritur nga Kanadaja në Tiranë.
Somayeh i quan prindërit e saj “agjentë iranianë”, ndërsa i ka bërë disa herë thirrje publike shtetit shqiptar t’i vijë në ndihmë.
Nga ana tjetër, prindërit Mostafa dhe Mahboubeh Mohammadi thonë se vajza e tyre është pjesë e një kulti të rrezikshëm terroristësh, MEK apo Mojahedin-e Khalq.
Faqja “online” iranian.com tregon versionin tjetër të historisë dhe ngre alarmin për rrezikshmërinë që paraqesin muxhahedinët që strehohen në Shqipëri.
“Iranian” identifikon disa prej muxhahedinëve për të cilët thotë se janë trajnuar nga Garda e diktatorit Saddam Hussein me taktika lufte të avancuara. Në artikull thuhet se ata dhunojnë dhe intimidojnë muxhahedinët që braktisin kampin në Shqipëri.
“Në rast mosbindje apo revlotë”, policia shqiptare por edhe shërbimet inteligjente shqiptare “janë të paafta përballë këtij rreziku të madh që i kanoset”, shkruhen ndër të tjera në artikull.
Mojahedin Khalq, MEK, Rajavi cult in Iraq No more
اتمام قائله مجاهدین خلق، فرقه رجوی در عراق
The End of the Path – Teaser 1
پایان یک راه – تیزر اول
Mojahedin Khalq, MEK, Rajavi cult in Iraq No more
اتمام قائله مجاهدین خلق، فرقه رجوی در عراق
The End of the Path – Teaser ۲
پایان یک راه – تیزر دوم
Albania: MEK rebrands by assassinating unwanted members
Massoud and Anne Khodabandeh, Balkans Post, June 22 2018:… The mysterious disappearance of a member of the Mojahedin Khalq (MEK) terrorist group in Albania has once again drawn attention to this controversial group. Malek Sharaee, 47, originally from Khuzestan Province in Iran, was reportedly drowned in the Rrotull village irrigation water reservoir. After three days, divers have not found his body even though the …
Albania: MEK rebrands by assassinating unwanted members
Massoud Keshmiri: Killed Iran’s PM and President – last seen in Germany after escaping MEK
The mysterious disappearance of a member of the Mojahedin Khalq (MEK) terrorist group in Albania has once again drawn attention to this controversial group. Malek Sharaee, 47, originally from Khuzestan Province in Iran, was reportedly drowned in the Rrotull village irrigation water reservoir. After three days, divers have not found his body even though the water channel is only 3.5 meters deep. However, a MEK representative and three MEK witnesses say his clothes were found at the water’s edge. Police are now investigating this as a possible criminal offense. Even so, unless they gain access to Camp Ashraf Three, the MEK’s purpose-built training camp in Manez, they are unlikely to unearth the truth – MEK impunity is far greater than this small country can deal with or penetrate.
MEK (aka Saddam’s Private Army) was unknown in Albania until they arrived after 2013. Their bizarre behavior and controversial activitiessoon became the focus of media attention.
But the MEK’s dark history began long before this. Along with well-publicised military-style terrorist attacks on Iran since the 1980s, the MEK was also trained by Saddam Hussein’s Mukhaberat (Secret Services) and later by Israel’s MOSSAD, in intelligence gathering and secret operations. As a result, MEK has also conducted many covert terror acts and assassinations over the years. Several of these were deliberately staged to make it look like Iran was involved. Such as the 1994 bombing of the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires. In spite of extensive investigation, the primary evidence linking Iran came from four high ranking intelligence officers from MEK. In 2011, a man connected to Mexican drug dealers was arrested for the attempted murder of the Saudi Ambassadorto America. The US quickly accused Iran, but after two weeks the perpetrator was linked to MEK. In 2013, Israel arrested a Swedish Iranian man, Ali Mansouri, who ‘confessed’ to be spying for Iran in Tel Aviv. He turned out to be a MEK member.
The underlying pattern behind these events is of deception and callous, cynical murder. These examples are not unique. MEK has a long history of highly sophisticated and brutal undercover activity. However, the reported death of Malek Sharaee in Albania this week also points to a new phase in MEK covert activity. This time individual MEK members who were previously involved in known acts of violence are now themselves becoming victims of their own organization.
Internal assassinations are not new – Commander Ali Zarkesh was deliberately killedduring a military operation in 1988 because he had become critical of the leadership. There have been hundreds of reports of suspicious deaths and actual murders over the last three decades committed against critics and rivals.
In 2013, former MEK member Massoud Dalili was identified as the 53rd victim of a massacre at Camp Ashraf in Iraq. MEK only acknowledged his death when the Iraqi authorities formally identified him via his DNA. Dalili’s body had been deliberately disfigured (his face and hands burned) to hide his identity. Massoud Dalili had been one of the personal security personnel for leader Massoud Rajavi. He had undergone training with Saddam’s Republican Guards and the MEK’s own specialist training. Before coming to Iraq, Dalili had headed a small MEK team in Gilan Province where he was responsible for scores of deaths, including civilians.
Another victim killed during the same attack was Zohreh Ghaemi, She had commanded the assassination of General Sayad Shirazi in 1999. Of the other victims that day, at least ten are known to have participated in known acts of violence for MEK. No one claimed responsibility for the attack on Camp Ashraf.
In 2015, in the Netherlands, Mohamad Reza Kolahi was killed by a criminal gang on the order of MEK. Investigators confirmed that Kolahi was responsible for the 1981 bombing of the headquarters of the Islamic Republic Party in Tehran in which 72 high-ranking politicians and party members were killed.
Another MEK member, Massoud Keshmiri, responsible for the bombing which killed PM Bahonar and President Rajai in 1981, was last seen with MEK in Germany some years ago. He has since vanished and could be dead. Although these deaths cannot be said to be directly linked, there is a common thread whose purpose becomes clear when we remember 2016 when Prince Turki al-Faisal, former Saudi Intelligence chief, announced the death of MEK leader Massoud Rajavi. It is clear from this that MEK is being purged from top to bottom of all the individuals who have had involvement or are associated with its violent past – rebranding by assassination to make the group legally acceptable.
Anne Khodabandeh with recently escaped MEK slaves in Tirana
Modern Slavery is usually a hidden phenomenon, it goes on behind closed doors and can be hard to detect. Victims are often isolated individuals – domestic servants or cannabis ‘farmers’ – locked away behind closed doors. Nobody knows of their existence because they have been illegally trafficked. Even those more openly kept in brothels for sexual exploitation are unable to escape for fear of reprisals against themselves and their families back home.
But there is another form of slavery hidden in plain sight: political slavery. This is not difficult to detect because the kinds of groups which practice it actively seek publicity and influence over worldwide politics. The exiled Iranian Mojahedin Khalq organisation (MEK aka MKO, NCRI, Rajavi cult) is one such group. It describes itself as a democratic political organisation, the main opposition to the Islamic Republic of Iran. But the life of the members speaks of a very different story.
A year ago, the last of nearly three thousand MEK members were finally expelled from Iraq where they had been operating under the patronage of Saddam Hussein. America paid millions of dollars to the UN and the Albanian government to have the group to settle there. Part of the deal was to establish a de-radicalization programme to return the members to normal life. This did not happen.
Instead, the group closed ranks and over the past year, several high-profile US politicians and former officials opportunistically visited Albania to heap praise on the MEK for its anti-Iran stance. John Bolton, Senator John McCain, among others have unabashedly promoted the group by meeting its leader Maryam Rajavi there.
Of greater concern was that during this same period the families of these MEK members in Albania complained to the UNHCR and the Albanian government about the treatment of their loved ones. They said that many, perhaps the majority of MEK members want to leave the group but have nothing – no money, no place to go, no officially recognised status and no language skills – to help them do so. They are effectively being held in a state of modern slavery.
A report by an Albanian lawyer (acting for MEK members who managed to separate from the group) after meeting with the UNHCR in Tirana reveals that under a secret agreement struck between the Americans, the government of Albania and the MEK leader, the UNHCR supervised the transfer of approximately 3,000 MEK from Iraq to Albania not as refugees but on a ‘humanitarian basis’. In other words, they have no official status in the country.
According to this agreement, all the expenses for the MEK members are to be doled out by the MEK itself. This means that members are totally dependent on the MEK leadership for their subsistence. Those who have expressed their desire to separate from the group, for whatever reason, must continue to obey MEK rules and restrictions, they must accept MEK imposed conditions so that they are given accommodation and food.
As such, they are forced to pay lip service to a belief system they no longer believe in. They are forced to give allegiance to a pseudo-political terrorist entity. Under these conditions, they are modern political slaves, trapped in plain sight in a circle of fear, coercion and isolation.
When counter-terrorism expert Anne Khodabandeh visited Tirana on 5-7 November to investigate the plight of former members, several media interviews she gave were pulled from broadcast due to MEK and Albanian Mafia intimidation when she revealed that the MEK are actively recruiting Albanian youth to their cause.
But a more sinister turn of events is taking place right now. The MEK is moving over 2,500 members to a remote camp in the north of Albania far away from any local communities. This desperate act serves several purposes. One is to recreate the isolation the cult enjoyed in Iraq where coercion and brainwashing were a daily occurrence – the new camp is called ‘Ashraf Three’. Another reason is to prevent families from reaching their loved ones and prevent members from escaping. The other is to empty the old university buildings in Tirana to make way for a new round of political slaves to take up residence. This time, families of Daesh fighters who have fled Iraq and Syria are rumoured to be ready to move to Albania on ‘humanitarian grounds’.
While America turns a blind eye to political slavery, the European Union takes a very different view. Not only have Albania’s efforts to accede to the EU been completely stymied by the MEK’s activities there, the group’s alignment with the Albanian Mafia and the threat of a new wave of political slaves means Albania is now regarded as a security threat on the border of Europe rather than a potential partner country.
IMPAKT 97: Jihad 2.0? What are the Iranian Jihadis (MKO, Rajavi cult) doing in Albania? (part 1)
IMPAKT 97: Jihad 2.0? What are the Iranian Jihadis (MKO, Rajavi cult) doing in Albania? (part 2)
nga Massoud Khodabandeh.
Një raport i Britanisë së Madhe mbi skllavërinë moderne identifikon raste nga m të ndryshmit si shfrytëzimi seksual, shfrytëzimi në punë dhe robërimi në vend, duke dalë në përfundimin se rritja e ndërgjegjësimit rezulton në rritjen e zbulimeve dhe raportimeve të rasteve. Por trafikimi njerëzor si pjesë e skllavërisë moderne është një fenomen mbarëbotëror, i cili nuk mund të kufizohet në perëndim apo në ndonjë vend tjetër.
Skllavëria Moderne është zakonisht një fenomen i fshehur i cili ndodh prapa dyerve dhe është i vështirë për t’u zbuluar. Viktimat shpesh janë individë të izoluar, shërbyes shtëpish ose fermerë kanabisi të cilët qëndrojnë të mbyllur padrejtësisht mbrapa dyerve të kycura. Askush nuk di për ekzistencën e tyre, sepse ata janë të trafikuar ilegalisht. Edhe ata që mbahen më hapur nëpër shtëpi publike për shfrytëzim seksual, nuk janë në gjendje të shpëtojnë nga frika që kanë prej hakmarrjes dhe dëmtimit që mund tu shkaktohet familjeve të tyre.
Por ekziston edhe një formë skllavërie e fshehur nga syri normal: skllavëria politike. Kjo nuk është e vështirë për t’u zbuluar, sepse grupet që e praktikojnë atë në mënyrë aktive kërkojnë publicitet dhe ndikim mbi politikat mbarëbotërore. Organizata iraniane në mërgim, Mojahedin Khalq (MEK aka MKO, NCRI, kulti Raxhavi) është një grup i tillë. Ai e përshkruan veten si një organizatë politike demokratike, opozita kryesore e Republikës Islamike të Iranit. Por jeta reale e anëtarëve tregon një histori shumë më ndryshme.
Një vit më parë, pjesa e mbetur e rreth tre mijë anëtarëve të MEK u dëbuan nga Iraku ku ata kishin vepruar nën patronazhin e Sadam Huseinit. Amerika pagoi miliona dollarë për OKB-në dhe qeverinë shqiptare për ta vendosur grupin në Shqipëri. Një pjesë e marrëveshjes mbi dërgimin në Shqiperi ishte krijimi i një programi de-radikalizues për ti kthyer anëtarët në jetën normale. Kjo nuk ndodhi.
Në vend të kësaj, grupi i mbylli radhët dhe u izolua edhe më tej. Gjatë vitit të kaluar, shumë politikanë të nivelit të lartë amerikan vizituan Shqipërinë për të falenderuar dhe përgëzuar MEK-un për qëndrimin e tij kundër Iranit. John Bolton dhe Senatori John McCain e kanë promovuar pa masë grupin duke u takuar edhe me udhëheqësen e tij Merjem Raxhavin.
Një shqetësim më i madh gjatë kësaj periudhe ishte se familjarët e anëtarëve të MEK-ut u ankuan në UNHCR dhe tek qeveria shqiptare për trajtimin e të afërmve të tyre. Ata thanë se shumë prej tyre, ndoshta edhe shumica e anëtarëve të MEK duan të largohen nga grupi, por nuk munden sepse nuk kanë asgjë, as para, as vend ku të shkojnë, as status të njohur zyrtarisht dhe nuk kanë edhe aftësi gjuhësore për t’i ndihmuar që të largohen. Ata në këtë mënyrë po mbahen në një gjendje të skllavërisë moderne.
Një raport i një avokati shqiptar (që vepron për anëtarët e ndarë të MEK) pas takimit me UNHCR-në në Tiranë zbuloi se në marrëveshjen sekrete të arritur mes amerikanëve, qeverisë shqiptare dhe udhëheqësit të MEK, UNHCR do mbikëqyrte transferimin e rreth 3,000 anëtarëve të MEK nga Iraku për në Shqipëri, por jo si refugjatët e zakonshëm por si persona të klasifikuar në ‘baza humanitare’. Me fjalë të tjera, ata nuk kanë asnjë status zyrtar në këtë vend.
Sipas kësaj marrëveshjeje, të gjitha shpenzimet për anëtarët e MEK-ut duhet të përcaktohen nga vetë MEK-u. Kjo do të thotë se anëtarët janë krejtësisht të varur nga udhëheqja e MEK-ut për jetesën e tyre. Ata që kanë shprehur dëshirën e tyre për t’u ndarë nga grupi, për çfarëdo arsye, duhet të vazhdojnë t’i binden rregullave dhe kufizimeve të MEK-ut. Ata duhet të pranojnë kushtet e vendosura nga MEK në mënyrë që t’u jepet strehimi dhe ushqimi.
Prandaj, ata janë të detyruar ti ofrojnë shërbimin e tyre një sistem besimi të cilin ata nuk e besojnë më. Ata janë të detyruar ti japin besnikëri një entiteti terrorist pseudo-politik. Në këto kushte, ata janë bërë skllevërit modernë politikë, të bllokuar nga syri i lirë, të rrethuar nga frika, forca dhe izolimi.
Tregimet e atyre që janë arratisur janë tronditëse. (Shih videot më poshtë.) Në MEK, çdo fjalë kundërshtuese dënohet. Si? Me poshtërim publik, rrahje, izolim dhe vdekje. Më shumë prekës në këtë histori është se kontaktimi me familjen konsiderohet një mëkat i dënueshëm që i bëhet liderit. Përkushtimi duhet të përqëndrohet vetëm tek Merjem Raxhavi duke përjashtuar cdo njeri tjetër. Kjo është dicka shqetësuese për mënyrat dhe arsyet se si këta individë janë skllavëruar. Kjo njihet si abuzimi i kultit për shkak të përfshirjes në një sistem besimi. Njerzit e MEK janë pengje politikë, mendjet e të cilëve janë rrëmbyer për një kauzë që shumica e tyre tani nuk po e besojnë më. Urgjentisht nevojitet ndihmë për t’i shpëtuar këta njerëz. Por aktualisht nuk ka shumë shpresë për këtë gjë. Madje zëvendës koordinatorja e antitrafikimit në Shqipëri, Dr Elona Gjebrea, e cila është gjithashtu zëvendës ministre e brendëshme, i është gjunjëzuar Merjem Raxhavit.
Ekspertja e anti terrorizmit, Anne Khodabandeh vizitoi Tiranën në datat 5 dhe 7 nëntor për të hetuar gjendjen e vështirë të ish-anëtarëve. Disa intervista që ajo dha për mediat shqiptare u tërhoqën nga transmetimi për shkak të kërcënimit nga MEK dhe nga mafia shqiptare pasi ajo zbuloi se MEK ishte duke rekrutuar në mënyrë aktive të rinjtë shqiptarë.
Por kthesa më e keqe e ngjarjeve po ndodh tani. MEK po transferon 2,500 anëtarë të saj në një kamp të largët në veri të Shqipërisë, larg nga çdo komunitet vendas. Ky akt i dëshpëruar shërben për disa qëllime. Njëra është rikrijimi i izolimit që kulti ka pasur dhe gëzuar në Irak ku imponimi dhe lavazhi i trurit ishin dukuri e përditshme. Kampi i ri quhet ‘Ashraf tre’. Një arsye tjetër është parandalimi i familjeve nga vizitat e të afërmve të tyre dhe parandalimi i arratisjes së anëtarëve. Arsyeja tjetër është që të boshatisin ndërtesat e vjetra universitare në Tiranë për ti hapur rrugën një raundi të ri të skllevërve politikë për tu siguruar atyre akomodim të ri. Këtë herë thuhet se familjet e luftëtarëve të ISIS-it që janë larguar nga Iraku dhe Siria janë gati që të lëvizin në Shqipëri për ‘arsye humanitare’.
Ndërkohë që Amerika bën një sy qorr ndaj skllavërisë politike, Bashkimi Evropian po mban një qëndrim krejt ndryshe. Jo vetëm që përpjekjet e Shqipërisë për të hyrë në BE janë pezulluar tërësisht si pasoje e aktiviteteve të MEK-ut, por përafrimi i grupit Mek me mafian shqiptare dhe kërcënimi nga vala e re e skllevërve politikë nënkupton se Shqipëria tani po konsiderohet më shumë si një kërcënim për sigurinë e kufijve të Evropës sesa një vend partner potencial.
IMPAKT 97: Xhihadi 2.0? Cfarë po bëjnë xhihadistët iranianë (MKO, kulti Raxhavi) në Shqipëri? (Pjesa 1)
IMPAKT 97: Xhihadi 2.0? Cfarë po bëjnë xhihadistët iranianë (MKO, kulti Raxhavi) në Shqipëri? (Pjesa 2)
burimi:huffingtonpost/ Gazeta Impakt
Massoud Khodabandeh, Balkans Post, July 23 2017:… Although the MEK are experts at intimidation and propaganda, in reality the expulsion of the MEK from Europe should be neither controversial nor unexpected. No government in Europe supports the presence of extremists in their midst and the MEK has a long history of extremist behaviour and messaging. The self-immolations in western capitals are an example of their actual behaviour …
Anne Khodabandeh (Singleton), Open minds, July 08 2017:… Anne Khodabandeh. After twenty years in the terrorist cult Mojahedin-e Khalq, Anne (with her husband Massoud Khodabandeh) established the English language www.iran-interlink.org website in 2001 to expose the group as a cult and support former members. Anne works with families of MEK campaigning to rescue their loved ones. Anne has written extensively …
Massoud Khodabandeh,, Huffpost, June 28 2017:… Like many statements and petitions over the years which mention the MEK this looks like fake news. Anyway, it would have been much easier to pass this off as genuine if Deprez had also published the names of the 265 signatories. As parliamentarians, it is doubtful they would feel endangered by publicly announcing their views in this way. Unless, of course, they had spotted the …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffpost, June 27 2017:… Perhaps the time is finally ripe for a new appraisal of what zero tolerance means for France. The MEK’s messages promoting violent regime change should no longer be tolerated. President Emmanuel Macron’s new centrist movement has won a large majority in the French parliament giving him a strong hand to play. He already revealed himself to be a shrewd and …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Iranian.com, June 20 2017:… The following piece has been written by somebody I know well. He does not want his real name to be used because that would jeopardize the sensitive nature of his current work in counter terrorism in Europe – Massoud Khodabandeh… As a former member of the Mojahedin Khalq terrorist organization (MEK), I followed the news of terrorist attacks on Tehran with shame, guilt and anger. My shame and guilt stem …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffpost, June 02 2017:… The meeting was organised by Ana Gomes, SND (Portugal) and seconded by Marietje Schaake, ALDE (Netherlands) and Michael Gahler, Christian Democrats (Germany). Two expert speakers were invited to address the meeting: Nicola Pedde, Director Institute for Global Studies, Italy and Massoud Khodabandeh, Director Middle East Strategy Consultants, UK. …
Massoud and Anne Khodabandeh, Huffpost, May 18 2017:… In Albania, Elona Gjebrea also has close ties to the United States on the issue of people trafficking and slavery. The US embassy in Tirana, Albania acknowledged the State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons report in June 2016 by saying, “The United States appreciates the close cooperation with the Government of Albania, civil society and especially National …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Top topic, May 08 2017:… Rajavi then publishes these alongside letters signed by American personalities in support of the MEK. The letters from the Americans are addressed to the Albanian Prime Minister and bear the familiar hallmark of MEK authorship. (One letter published by the MEK is signed in blue ink. We can only speculate how the MEK obtained the original letter which should have been sent directly from the Americans to the Albanian PM!) …
National Geographic, March 04 2017:… Leading MEK members squirm under the knowing gaze of Michael Ware. Watch the shifty looks and glances as the MEK representatives try to lie about their true intentions. They admit to wanting regime change, but claim to be pacifists. Ware asks ‘Why does a political organization still need to have a para-military organization?’ He then cleverly gets them to …
Associated Press, February 16 2017:… The group at one point successfully infiltrated the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, according to a State Department report. And a series of bombings attributed to the MEK accompanied visits by presidents Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter to Iran, including one to target an American cultural center. In 1973, MEK assailants wearing motorcycle helmets shot dead U.S. Army Lt. …
Iran Interlink, February 15 2017:… The following OpEd by MEK advocate Col. Wes Martin was published first in The Hill, followed by Mojahedin Khalq’s “Iran Probe” and the “NCRI” websites. Iran Interlink has published it here as indication of how hysteria has become the new normal in American published writing. A form of madness appears to have infected US politics and now all and sundry are dancing …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffington Post, February 07 2017:… He also signals that his war is not with ISIS but with the country Iran. Donald Trump rose to victory in part on the promise to take on ISIS and defeat the group. Yet ISIS cannot be defeated except by a coalition of forces that includes Iran. The facts on the ground in Syria and Iraq demonstrate unequivocally that ISIS forces in Aleppo and Mosul have been defeated largely due to the involvement
Gazeta Impakt, Albania, Translated by Iran Interlink, January 01 2017:… According to Fatos Klosi, former director of the National Intelligence Service, the American CIA chief has warned Albania that Donald Trump will renounce support for the MEK terrorists and it will be the Albanian Government itself which must deal with internal security and must confront a group trained militarily from the time of Saddam Hussein …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffington Post, December 24 2016:… That can only happen if journalists and investigatory bodies (human rights, nuclear experts, war crimes, etc) are able to base their work on facts and not the fake and fictionalised fantasies of stooges like the MEK, which are clearly designed to misinform on these issues. The information laundry cycle is not difficult to follow – the Washington Times takes its report …
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffington Post, November 12 2016:… In particular, Rudi Giuliani, John Bolton and Newt Gingrich. Putting aside their weak personalities as well as their individual neoconservative agendas, the common thread which links these names together is their decade long support for the Mojahedin Khalq terrorist organisation (also known as Saddam’s Private Army or Rajavi cult). It is certain that … .
Iran Interlink, October 30 2016:… Local observers in Tirana are reporting that the Mojahedin Khalq cultic terror group (MEK) is buying and creating several sandwich and kebab shops in the city and is using the MEK members to work in these fast-food businesses. On the surface this may look like a positive move. In an article titled ‘Albania: What would a de-radicalization program for the Mojahedin Khalq involve’, it was …
Anne and Massoud Khodabandeh, Iran Interlink, October 16 2016:… In spite of American promises, no de-radicalisation programme is in place to deal with over 2500 members of the Mojahedin Khalq terrorist group who have relocated to Tirana from Iraq. The MEK has a long history of violent and criminal activity. This has not stopped now they are in Tirana. Unless the Albanian government introduces its own programme, it must accept …
Anne and Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffington post (and Top Topic), October 09 2016:… For the local citizens, mystery surrounds their arrival and their lifestyle. Should these secretive and covert neighbours be treated with suspicion or kindness? At a local level, the first thing neighbouring families need to be aware of is that among all MEK members, sexual relations have been banned for over 25 years. This means there are no marriages or children or young people in the organisation. More troubling …
Massoud & Anne Khodabandeh, Huffington Post, July 14 2016:… Whether Rajavi is already dead or now killable is not known – only he can answer this – but he and his whole organisation are certainly now, body and soul, in the capable hands of the Saudi Prince. If he is still alive, Rajavi’s only role is to act as go-between to instruct his wife what she must do on behalf of the Saudis. If he is dead
Massoud Khodabandeh, Huffington Post, July 08 2016:… Clearly this message is not aimed at Iranians. The clamour for regime change in Iran does not emanate from inside the country in spite of its many social, civic and political problems. Who then is Maryam Rajavi’s constituency? Fro
Massoud Khodabandeh, Toptopic, July 03 2016:… So, back to the recent advertising campaign. Any publicity campaign will be successful if it is newsworthy. Maryam, however, simply churns out the same scenario ad infinitum. Starting with describing a terrible situation in Iran – based on news items that can be gleaned from any serious report