July 13 (UPI) -- On June 30, German police arrested Assadollah Assadi, a diplomat from the Iranian Embassy in Vienna, and charged him with terrorist offenses. On the same day, Belgian police arrested an Iranian couple from Antwerp after 500 grams of high explosives and a detonator were found in their car. They admitted Assadi had given them the bomb and instructed them to detonate it at the Iranian democratic opposition, PMOI (MEK) rally being held in Villepinte, near Paris, that weekend.
Despite clear evidence that Iranian embassies in Europe are now used as terrorist bomb factories, EU lawmakers on July 5 nevertheless approved plans for the European Investment Bank to do business with the theocratic regime in Iran in a desperate bid to keep the 2015 nuclear deal alive. The EU appeasers seem to think that if you keep throwing steaks to the tiger it will become a vegetarian.
Opponents of the regime inside Iran are regularly imprisoned, tortured and hanged, often in public. An estimated 100,000 political prisoners have been murdered since the ayatollahs seized control of Iran in 1979. Outside the country, the mullahs' preferred option is assassination or terrorist attacks. They have trained Ministry of Intelligence & Security (MOIS) agents implanted in every European embassy. Their job is to track down and eliminate political dissidents or enemies of the fundamentalist regime. Assadi was one of these trained MOIS agents, who, according to reliable sources within Iran, was ordered by Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei and by the regime's President Hassan Rouhani, to carry out to the indiscriminate terrorist bomb attack, which would have killed and maimed EU citizens.
Keynote speakers at the Villepinte conference included the Iranian opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi, U.S. President Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Energy Secretary and U.N. ambassador in the Clinton administration, Bill Richardson. Many prominent North American, EU, Middle East and international politicians were also in attendance at the rally. The U.S. State Department has now urged all nations "to carefully examine diplomats in Iranian embassies to ensure their countries' own security," stating, "If Iran can plot bomb attacks in Paris, they can plot attacks anywhere in the world and we urge all nations to be vigilant about Iran."
Although the Iranian terrorist plot was foiled on the eve of a visit to Austria by Rouhani and his Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, the Austrian president went ahead with the meeting in a sickening act of appeasement. In a blind panic over Trump's withdrawal from the nuclear deal, Iran is desperately trying to bully and cajole the EU into making up any shortfall caused by renewed sanctions and Europe seems tragically happy to comply. Embarrassingly, Rouhani lamely tried to deflect his guilt in the terrorist bomb plot by claiming it was a convenient "false flag" effort devised by enemies of his tyrannical regime, demanding the immediate release of his diplomat. The German and Belgian federal prosecutors totally rejected this assertion and sought the removal of diplomatic immunity from Assadi.
This latest outrage should send shock waves across the EU, which still seems determined to pursue a policy of appeasement with the homicidal Iranian regime. Europe needs to wake up. Iranian embassies should immediately be closed across the EU and their diplomatic staff expelled. The days of kowtowing to this medieval and murderous regime are over. Europe must show that we support the Iranian people in their ongoing uprising and their bid to end the tyranny that they have suffered for four decades. But for the vigilance of the Belgian Security and Intelligence Service and the Belgian and German police, dozens of innocent people would have been maimed and killed in Villepinte. Murderous attempts of this magnitude can no longer be ignored.
Struan Stevenson is coordinator of the Campaign for Iran Change. He served as a member of the European Parliament representing Scotland (1999-2014), president of the Parliament's Delegation for Relations with Iraq (2009-14) and chairman of Friends of a Free Iran Intergroup (2004-14). He is an international lecturer on the Middle East and is also president of the European Iraqi Freedom Association.