|John Bruton: People of Iran will get democracy as a result of your determination|
Ambassador John Bruton, former Irish Prime Minister and the European Union Ambassador to the United States:
Paris, June 23 2012 - I’m very proud indeed to share a platform with a [not audible] party delegation from Ireland here to support the people of Ashraf and Camp Liberty led [applause] on this occasion by Deputy Dara Murphy of the Fianna Fáil Party. But the important people who are here are not on the platform. They are the people at the very back of the hall. Those of you who’ve had the privilege of speaking to this gathering, I would safely say, have not spoken to as large a delegation of people in your entire lives up till now.
There are 90,000 people who have come freely here to this meeting and who are waiting patiently through all the speeches for two reasons—for humanitarian reasons and for political reasons. They want justice, fair play, and the right to life for 3,400 people who are currently confined in Ashraf and in Camp Liberty. Those people as a matter of life and death need at the earliest opportunity to be resettled either in the United States or in Western Europe. The whole purpose of setting up Camp Liberty was so that each one of these people could be individually interviewed so that they could be determined to be refugees and therefore entitled to be resettled. So far approximately 10% of these people have already been interviewed, but significantly not one announcement has been made yet, that one of, any one of them who have been interviewed have been designated as refugees. I think this is ominous and I think the reason for it is that the countries of Europe and the United States and the other countries of the western world, none of them have stated clearly that they will be willing to accept the residents of Camp Ashraf.
And I would urge each one of you who are here to go home to your home countries and get in touch with your own government and ask your own government in your own country why they will not accept your cousins, your brothers, your sisters, your friends, and your family from Camp Ashraf and Camp Liberty, because there is nothing that can be done to resettle these people and to save their lives unless governments of the West are willing to accept them, 3,400 people. If the 50 states of the United States and the 27 states of the European Union were each willing to open their doors to these people, to your friends and your family, all that would be needed for any one of those entities to take would be a mere 44 people. That’s not a big issue. That’s not a big problem and it is very, very important that these people be given safety and security at the earliest opportunity. [applause]
Of course, of course it is the case that the European governments are hiding, are hiding behind the United States and hiding behind the fact that the United States for no good reason continues to designate the PMOI (MeK) - your organization as a terrorist organization, which it is not. But that’s only an excuse. The European governments know that there is no significant risk in receiving your friends into their countries and they should have the courage to say that and act on it immediately. [applause] The second reason, the second reason that so many people are here, so many young people in particular are here, is political. They want to see a democratic Iran. Is there any country in Europe that could gather so many young people together for democracy, to protect democracy in their own country? Probably not. But the people of Iran want democracy. [applause] The people of Iran are entitled to democracy, and the people of Iran will get democracy as a result. The people of Iran will get democracy as a result of your determination.
The people of Europe, the people of the United States, the people of the western world, agree with Madam Rajavi when she says, “The ballot box is the only criterion for our legitimacy.” She is right. They agree with Madam Rajavi when she said, “There should be freedom of parties and assembly.” And she is right. They agree with her too when she says, “There should be the abolition of the death penalty,” because she is right on that, too. They agree with her that any form of discrimination against women should be banned and she is right on that. They agree with her when she says, “There should be a sound and independent legal system with the presumption of innocence and the right to proper defense counsel,” because again, she is right when she says that. They agree with her furthermore that the foreign policy of Iran should be based on peaceful coexistence and they agree that there should be a free Iran devoid of nuclear weapons. It’s for a program like that that we’re gathered here [applause] and for a program like that that we’re fighting for a free Iran. It’s a good program and it deserves the support of the people of Europe just as it has in this great delegation here behind my back, the support of the people of Ireland. Thank you. [applause]
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