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Lord Corbett of Castle Vale; Court orders deproscription of Iran’s main opposition, the PMOI

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Lord Robin Corbett fought for justice, democracy, freedom and human rights throughout his parliamentary career
Lord Robin Corbett fought for justice, democracy, freedom and human rights throughout his parliamentary career

Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

London SW1A 0PW

18 December 2007

Court orders deproscription of Iran’s main opposition, the PMOI

On 30 November 2007, the Proscribed Organisations Appeals Commission ruled that Iran's main democratic opposition, the PMOI, is not concerned in terrorism. It said that the Home Secretary had got the law wrong and failed to take account of all relevant facts. POAC added that the decision to refuse an application made by 35 MPs and Peers for deproscription was “flawed”, “perverse” and “must be set aside”. It ordered the Home Secretary to lay before Parliament an Order removing the PMOI from the proscribed list.

During seven days of hearing, POAC considered extensive evidence contained in more than 20 witness statements and 20 files of documentation. Two out of the seven days of hearing took place behind closed doors, as “classified material” was scrutinised by POAC, including through the cross-examination of a Foreign Office official.

Having been dealt a devastating blow by this Court judgment, the Iranian regime can do no better than regurgitate spent and unfounded allegations against the PMOI, most of which were considered by POAC. You might therefore hear from the likes of ‘Anne Khodabandeh (nee Singleton)’, her husband ‘Massoud Khodabandeh’ or ‘Mohammad Hossein Sobhani’, telling you how POAC has got it all wrong. They are agents of the regime.

The misinformation spread by the regime’s agents, its front organisations (including Nejat Society, Peyvand and Aawa Association), as well as its numerous websites (including www.irandidban.com, www.iran-interlink.org, www.nejatngo.org, www.habilian.com, www.banisadr.info, www.zarrebin.com, and www.survivorsreport.org), were the subject of close scrutiny by POAC in the open and closed sessions.

POAC rejected the assertions of the Home Secretary, including the oral evidence of the Foreign Office official, as well as the misinformation of the regime. In its conclusions, it stated: “…the Iranian authorities (and its supporters) have been active in disseminating information designed to undermine the PMOI”. POAC added that it has “…to analyse information that may have come from, or been influenced by the Iranian authorities, with considerable care in order to assess its likely reliability and the weight to be attached to it”.

I hope you will find these comments helpful if you decide to respond to any letters from the regime’s agents.

Lord Corbett of Castle Vale
Chairman, British Parliamentary Committee for Iran Freedom

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