December 19, 2012 - Thank you, thank you. Dear friend, Alejo, I almost fainted with your words. You know we are friends but we are brothers. We are united in the cause which is Free Iran and all humanity with the same rights and this is why I am very moved by your words, which deeply move me. Allow me to speak a little about myself, for the other political leaders, and leaders of humanitarian associations in Spain. I’m Portuguese, you’ll have noticed, I’m a socialist and I have been working for a long time on the Iranian issue. I wanted to remind you that on the 4th of December this year we witnessed the 32nd anniversary of an accident where the Prime Minister and the Defence Minister of Portugal were killed [Francisco de Sá Carneiro and Adelino Amaro da Costa]. Many years later, a Parliamentary committee reached the conclusion that it was a terrorist attack. Some days ago, the Minister of Foreign Affairs at that time said that the attack could not have been caused by any other reason than weapons trading with Iran. Right now in Portugal there is, I believe, the 11th investigation committee on this attack 32 years ago, and I think that the words of Alejo, the words you used in your keynote speech are the most important words. The problem is that without morals we are not going anywhere. The main problem: political, economic and social we are facing is a moral problem, and the issue is that there is weapons trade or any other trade which makes it worthwhile to hide facts of something that happened 32 years ago. It may well be that in Portugal imaginary business with Iran is regarded as being more important than fundamental values, even the lives of rulers themselves, this is something that I wanted to comment as I am closer to Portugal here than I have been recently. I wanted to say this.
December 19, 2012 - Good evening, it is difficult for me to speak after so many politicians, I am not a politician but in 1968 I graduated in Political Science and Sociology and I was a Member of Parliament in the first parliaments, but my greatest joy came later when I started defending Human Rights. And it started after a call made to me by some collaborators of the former French Prime Minister and Mayor of Lille who was visiting for a twin city ceremony with the city of Valladolid. Some collaborators called me and asked me if I could meet them a few days before the PM’s visit as I was the Mayor of Valladolid, the city that was going to twin. I said there was no problem, I was in Valladolid at the time and their proposal was to initiate the Spanish Pro-Human Rights League through my organisation which was then clandestine, Spanish League for the Defence of the Rights of Man and the Citizen, which was formed in 1913 in the Ateneo de Madrid to defend some anarchists who had occupied a property and had been sentenced to death. From then onwards, I joined the fight for Human Rights and this has been one of the greatest satisfactions of my life. I must say that I have had opportunities to meet dictators and democrats. For me it’s an honour to be here today and to have on my right a … son… of an American Senator who was assassinated and the nephew of a President who died when I was 16 years old and I was doing voluntary military service and I remember that we were at camp for an entire week and not allowed out and I was at the American Base in Zaragoza. For me it’s an honour because you are from a family who are role models in the field of Human Rights and Liberties, your father and your uncle.
December 19, 2012 - Thank you; Ms Rajavi and distinguished personalities at this table. I agree fully with the brilliant speeches I have heard earlier, I am honoured to be a guest at the Casa de América, and I wish to say – after MP Xuclà’s speech on a return to history – to the Iranians visiting us I want to tell them that history is very deep in the country were they now are. Córdoba is just some kilometres from Madrid, where one of the most illustrious philosophers of Al-Andalus developed the theory of dispute and discrepancy in the interpretation of religious texts, an issue which is still very contemporary in the Islamic world, and where your movement is still at the forefront. We are at a place which is called Gabriela Mistral, who was not only a great writer, the only female Nobel Prize in Spanish; she was also a great fighter for Women’s Rights and equality of treatment for women. You are also in the land of Juan de Mariana, who was a thinker, a theologian from the 16th Century, from Aragon, which is also a few miles away from Madrid, who developed and conceived the idea of resistance versus oppression, against Absolutism, to such a point that recently a professor of the University of Paris, Françoise Guillaume, has explored the relationship between this theory on absolutist and tyrannical power in the works of Juan de Mariana, through Natural Law as a basis, and the thought that leads to and underlies the values of the French Revolution, and how that principle materialises in documents not only of the French revolution. The right to resistance and opposition is a right appearing in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen of 1789 and also in the Charter of Virginia and the founding documents of the United States. This is so to such a point that, this professor of La Sorbonne continues, the symbol of the French Revolution – and those of you living in Paris know it – is Marianne, the translation of Mariana, as in the midst of the revolution the counterrevolutionaries described revolutionaries as Marians. This is an example of how much the fight for resistance that you represent and that you are a part of is linked to a part of the action, the battle and thought of Spain and also to Al-Andalus in the case of Averroes, the philosopher I was describing at the beginning.
Thank you, Alejo, for your kind words. Good evening, everyone, it is especially an honour to share the table with Ms Rajavi, it is an honour and an experience I will never forget. The first thing I wanted to say is thank you for being here, for these days where you have visited us and where we have been able to meet some of you. Thank you for bringing us the voice of the persecuted in Iran, who in some cases are relatives and friends of yours; for us it is very important to have you here today, and feeling that closeness to the difficulties and the persecution suffered in Iran by the defenders of Human Rights.
ALEJO VIDAL-QUADRAS: Thank you, dear Jordi, for these inspiring words. You are absolutely right in saying that the Iranian people have had clouds on the horizon for too long. And it is time for the Sun to come out. What you said was very beautiful and inspiring. And now I am going to give the floor to a very good friend of Spain and the Iranian resistance, who we are very grateful to for the effort he has made to be here this evening.
The man I’m talking about is the former Congressman, Patrick Kennedy.
KENNEDY (in Spanish): But also I wish to say that we are together in our fight for Human Rights. We, together, can win this fight for Human Rights when we fight together. And I need the support, particularly from Spain for the refugees at Camp Liberty and Camp Ashraf. I hope that if your country can bring the refugees from Liberty to this country… Beautiful.Because they need democracy. And Spain has democracy. Finally, Iran is going to (how do you say it??) have democracy and therefore it is a fight for all of us. Thank you.
Patrick Kennedy, Member of the US Congress (1995-2011)
Thank you very much Mr Vidal Cuadras, member of parliament and for many years neighbour at Valmes street in Barcelona. Mrs Maryam Rajavi, colleagues, members of the Parliament, professor Garses, ladies and gentlemen, during my years as member of the Parliament I have always had clear that the noblest cause, the first cause, any other political motivation can be developed from is the defence and maintenance of the exercise of democracy and the respect for the human rights. That is why for me was clearly a priority to take part in the organization and modestly collaborate with this first visit, the honour that Spain receives the visit of the the Iranian opposition leader in exile, Maryam Rajavi. I have been many years following the evolution and fight of the Iranian opposition in the exile and I have also been following the fight of Mrs Rajavi for a long time and I can not do anything else than express my admiration, my consideration of the fight of the opposition and specially of Mrs Rajavi's leadership. Yesterday we had the opportunity to have a little talk in the Chamber of Deputies and in the Senate about her life: the life of a person who has not been able to be in her country, Irán, for 30 years, a person who has experienced the horrors of the repression, death and the totalitarianism in her family.
December 19, 2012 - Good evening, everyone and welcome to this meeting with the President of NCRI, our good friend Maryam Rajavi and her aides. In reality, I am opening this event on behalf of my colleagues of the Spanish Parliaments – the Senate and the Congress – who have been the true stars in the organisation of this visit. My attendance today is merely due to the fact that our long relationship of cooperation with the Iranian resistance in the European Parliament means that as this is the first visit of Ms Rajavi to Spain, it was a duty for the members of the EP, in this case, me as a Spaniard, to welcome her. However, I wish to thank the Senators and the MPs who have played a magnificent role making a huge effort to make this visit of Ms Rajavi to Madrid possible.
December 19, 2012 - Good afternoon, friends. Good afternoon, Ms Rajavi. It was a pleasure to meet you in person, and discover your commitment to your colleagues, your people, and the desire for democracy in your country. It has been one of the greatest personal satisfactions I have experienced in this challenging 2012, to discover the Iranian resistance, their commitment to the people of Iran and the human quality of the people who, like yourself, want the best for Iran over the forthcoming months.
London, December 11, 2012 - Dear Colleagues, we are here today to discuss the state of human rights in Iran, unfortunately we’ve done this so many times before, an issue that has been ignored for so long as the international community has been focusing more on the imminent threat of a nuclear armed Iran and efforts focused on stopping this threat.
London, December 11, 2012 - it is honor i never expected. i am going to be very kind to all of you here today because I am going to be very brief. I have been long supporter of NCRI and the cause which they support I have for long seen how people in Iran dreams for the day when Iran become free of mullahs, I have come here today to reaffirm my support for those people.
London, December 11, 2012 - Well, this morning, Ladies and Gentlemen, we are very fortunate to have so much support from our Irish colleagues. We have two members of the House of Lords from Ireland here. We did have an Irish member of the House of Commons but he just slipped out. I was just going to ask him to say something but anyway he was here present. I now call on the Baroness Turner to address us.
London, December 11, 2012 - Thank you Mr. Chairman there is something that is in all people unabatedly. And one of those things is what is right and what is decent and what is not right. And that is why we are here today. We are here to draw attention to the continuing oppression of the Iranian people at the hand of what we can only be called a barbarous regime.
London, December 11, 2012 - I have greatly valued my links with the PMOI and the Iranian opposition movement over several years. I became connected with the cause when the PMOI had been listed under the Terrorism Act 2000 as a prohibited terrorist organisation and when I looked at the evidence and the history and met the people involved, I realised immediately that this was a gross error. It should never have happened. The way that the legislation was framed made it extremely difficult to challenge the presence of one organisation among all those listed, and it was necessary – in order to get them delisted – to go through a very lengthy process which eventually took about eight years when we finally ended up in the Court of Appeal, and I have to say opposed tooth and nail by our government all the way along the line. They would not recognise that the PMOI is not a terrorist organisation, is a legitimate organisation pursuing political aims and should never have been prohibited. The consequences of prohibition, of course, were extremely serious. It meant that criminal offences were committed by anybody who was involved in any way with that organisation.