The German newspaper, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, has accepted that its article about the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), and the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), was defamatory in a court ruling in Germany. This is a historic win for the Iranian resistance movement which has long had to defend itself against fake news, mostly from the Iranian theocratic regime.
A German court has banned the publication of defamatory comments against #MEK #Iran. The German publication ‘Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ)’ has accepted this ruling (the second) and has given it full acceptance. pic.twitter.com/lfMi1v3oSG
— MEK Iran (Mujahedin-e Khalq) (@MEK_Iran) November 27, 2020
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) said in a statement that the “German court ruling proves once again that the source of all lies and fake news against the Iranian resistance is the mullahs’ regime.” Unfortunately, this legal battle that has been won is not likely to stop the regime from continuing its strategy of publishing misinformation about the legitimacy and popularity of the opposition.
The final, binding court case against the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung has had its ups and downs as can be illustrated by the brief history of the case below:
- March 2019: Der Spiegel magazine is prevented by a Hamburg court from alleging that torture exists at the MEK camp in Albania.
- May 2020: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) makes similar allegations which are banned by the Hamburg Regional Court. The FAZ appeals to the decision.
- November 2010: The NCRI can show evidence in court that FAZ and Der Spiegel’s source of information is coming from Iranian Secret Service Agents.
— Iran Freedom (@4FreedominIran) November 23, 2020
Allegations and fake newspaper articles are nothing new. The Iranian regime is adamant that the NCRI and (PMOI / MEK Iran), should not be able to spread their influence and ideas of regime change. Over the years, thousands of newspaper and magazine articles and movies have been produced trying to demonize the Iranian opposition. This has cost the regime billions of dollars all to no avail. Why does the regime keep doing this without any obvious success?
The main reason seems to be that the regime fails to do what could be done to make itself more popular, i.e. competently manage the economy, allow freedom of speech and worship, enable free and fair elections and respect the rights of women and ethnic minorities. Because it does none of these things it has made it the target of protest and uprisings from 2017all the way through to the current year.
The regime is quite aware that the Iranian resistance helps to organize these protests, even though they are often also quite spontaneous. The regime is scared that their days are numbered and lash out against the resistance movement as they have little more alternative after ruining their reputation within Iran long ago.
— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) June 26, 2020
Although the regime’s disinformation campaign is going nowhere, it helps to slow down the flow of real news from the resistance movement. It has helped to sow the seeds of doubt in the minds of western governments who have adopted timid policies of appeasement towards the Iranian regime in the hope that they will somehow, sometime reform themselves. The NCRI and (PMOI / MEK Iran), believe that this is impossible and there will have to be regime change in Iran. The cessation of Europe’s appeasement policy would speed up what has become inevitable.