On February 23, in an interview with Khabar Fouri website, former Deputy Speaker of the Iranian regime’s Parliament (Majlis) Ali Motahari raised questions about the case of Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian diplomat sentenced to 20 years in prison by a Belgian court for his role in a bombing attempt against a rally of the Iranian opposition in 2018.
“Was Assadollah Assadi’s bomb operation against the [Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK)] a personal initiative or a mission of the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS)?” Motahari said.
Assadi was a career diplomat in Tehran’s embassy in Vienna. In 2018, he used his diplomatic cover to transfer and deliver 1lb of TATP explosive material to his agents in Luxemburg.
According to undeniable evidence and Belgian prosecutors’ investigations, Assadi was the mastermind of a bomb attack against the Free Iran 2018 Rally, the annual gathering of the Iranian opposition coalition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) on June 30, 2018.
At the time, German law enforcement detained the Vienna-based Iranian diplomat after delivering the bomb to his operatives Nasimeh Naami and Amir Sadouni, both of whom were arrested by Belgian authorities. Mehrdad Arefani, a fourth agent, was arrested by French police. German police also seized two booklets containing instructions about detonating the bomb and receipts of his payments to his operatives. The details proved the so-called diplomat’s role as the chief of Tehran’s intelligence station in Europe.
Nonetheless, the conviction of Assadollah Assadi has currently ignited a new round of political rivalries at the cusp of Iran’s 2021 Presidential election. In this context, former Deputy Speaker Motahari slammed so-called reformists’ potential candidate Zarif and the Foreign Ministry’s secrecy.
“Imagine, should the story of Mr. Assadollah Assadi not be followed? Actually, has it happened? Did he want to bomb? Was [the operation] a personal initiative or a task of our MOIS?” said Motahari addressing Assadi’s background as an MOIS agent, which had been disclosed by the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) in 2018.
“They do not even tell the people whether it was true or not… They should explain. If this story was true, they must be prosecuted. Is this our manners?” he questioned, concealing 42 years of the Iranian regime’s sponsor of terrorism.
“This is not our method, and if someone took such actions, they must be identified and punished. However, they say nothing and only say, ‘A Belgian court has wrongly convicted [Assadi] to 20 years in prison. They don’t utterly explain the issue to the people. Did the court convicted him for nothing?” Motahari challenged the Foreign Ministry and the entire regime’s secrecy.
“They should explain and say that the issue did not actually happen, and if it was true, the perpetrators must be sentenced. These individuals are harming the [Islamic] Revolution’s view, and the government must stop such actions,” he ended.
Motahari’s remarks are definitely the tip of the iceberg, which has opened its way through official or semiofficial media. The fact is that the Iranian diplomat’s unprecedented conviction is an irreparable blow to the Iranian regime’s terrorism, as NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi had said.
This verdict goes beyond the conviction of an individual diplomat of the regime. It is a political defeat for the mullahs, a judicial conviction for the regime, and the neutralization of many of its policies and tactics. #EUTime4FirmIranPolicyhttps://t.co/ZZyRa3AB42
— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) February 4, 2021
“This verdict goes beyond the conviction of an individual diplomat of the regime. It is a political defeat for the mullahs, a judicial conviction for the regime, and the neutralization of many of its policies and tactics,” tweeted Mrs. Rajavi on February 4.
Now, it is time for the international community to clarify its priorities, European citizens’ security and safety, or temporary economic interests by the hands of the mullahs who fund, promote, and implement terror attacks on European soil. This is a choice that will have historical implications and will show whether Europe stood on the right side of history.