Brussels: Several hundred supporters of the Iranian opposition demonstrated against the deal with Iran, which will possibly allow the extradition of convicted Iranian terrorist Assodollah Assadi in exchange for the prisoners of Belgium in Iran.
According to the National Council for the Resistance in Iran (NCRI), the opposition group that organised the demonstration, about 2,000 demonstrations came together on Thursday morning. At the same time, the local police mentioned that there were 8—protestors says the reports.
In the previous week, the Foreign Relations Committee approved the controversial bill that would allow Belgium and Iran to exchange prisoners. Critics said the deal was set up to release Iranian diplomat and terrorist Assodollah Assadi, who was sentenced to twenty(20) years in Jail in Belgium for planning a bomb attack in Paris.
Moreover, Swedish-Iranian VUB professor Ahmadreza Djalai is on death sentence in Iran, and Belgian NGO worker Oliver Vandecasteele has been imprisoned without charge. The Iranian opposition calls this “hostage diplomacy”, where Iran hostages from nations where Iranian terrorists have been convicted in order to bring them back into the country.
The NCRI gathered in Surlet de Chokier Square, a stone’s throw away from the federal parliament, to protest the bill, which will be on the agenda of the plenary meeting next week.
Along with this, the leader of the NCRI, Maryam Rajavi, is mentioned as having been Assadi’s main target in Paris. She called the negotiations with the Iranian regime over hostages “one step forward and a hundred steps back”, as “any European and American citizen in Iran could become the next hostage.”
MP’s Koen Metsu of Belgium and Theo Francken showed their support for the Iranian protestors, as Francken pressured opposition MPs to “vote against, abstain or simply not show up for the vote”. Calling the situation a “moral dilemma”, he is concerned that a deal with Iran would encourage the regime to jail even more innocents or deal with dissidents.
The majority of the protestors were also presented in Paris at the time Assadi was supposed to carry out his attack, as to NCRI member Behzad Naziri. “They counted on Belgium as a constitutional state,” he mentioned in the statement. “They didn’t think a religious dictatorship could dictate its will. Because that’s what’s happening right now.”