News : Iranian opposition
- Published: Wednesday, 25 April 2018
by Mahmood Hakamian
Previously, we featured a piece on the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which explained what the organisation was and how it came into being. Now, we will explore that the political structure of the NCRI.
The President-elect of the NCRI is Maryam Rajavi. Her role is to serve as the President-in-exile until the end of the mullahs’ Regime. Then she will take over as President of Iran during the six-month transition period, until a new constitution has been ratified and a new president chosen in the elections.
The NCRI secretariat is headed by Mahnaz Salimian, the Senior Secretary of the NCRI. It comprises of five secretaries, including Abolghasem Rezai, the Deputy Senior Secretary of NCRI, and is responsible for arranging NCRI meetings, communicating with NCRI members, and performing all administrative tasks.
The NCRI assembly is the decision-making body. It holds weekly informal discussions on current political issues with NCRI members present at the time, as well as meetings with the committee chairs.
There are 25 NCRI committees, which are responsible for researching and planning for the future of Iran, effectivity acting as shadow ministries. Some committees have more responsibilities than research and planning, so let’s look at some of those.
• Foreign Affairs Committee
The Foreign Affairs Committee of the NCRI must maintain contact with parliamentarians, political personalities, think tanks, UN bodies, NGO's, and human rights organizations from around the globe as well as publishing numerous papers on the Iranian Regime and any new developments in Iran, in English, French, German, Italian and Arabic.
• Women’s Committee
The Women’s Committee of the NCRI works with Iranian women both inside and outside Iran to provide the NCRI with information on women’s rights in Iran. They are also actively involved with global women’s rights groups and NGOs to improve women’s rights in Iran.
The Women’s Committee also regularly attends international or regional conferences on women’s issues.
• Defense and Strategic Research Committee
The Defense and Strategic Research Committee of the NCRI monitors the Iranian Regime’s military activities, especially surrounding its nuclear and ballistic missile capabilities, through close work with the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) network inside Iran. This has resulted in many revelations about the regime’s nuclear and ballistic missile activities.
• Political Research Committee
The Political Research Committee of the NCRI is focused on the political situation inside of Iran, from social unrest to factional disputes and any other important developments.
It then prepares reports into these developments, with research from the MEK, which help the NCRI to assess policies and positions.
• Security and Anti-Terrorism Committee
The Security and Anti-Terrorism Committee of the NCRI is responsible for countering any terrorist or intelligence threats from the Iranian Regime that would undermine the resistance.
In recent years, the Regime has used its Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) to conduct a cyber war against the NCRI and the MEK, which includes spreading disinformation.
The Security and Anti-Terrorism Committee also works with the MEK to reveal the Iranian Regime's terrorist activities.
• Arts and Culture Committee
The Arts and Culture Committee of the NCRI is responsible for working with various Iranian societies to enrich Iranian culture and arts, including holding cultural gatherings, concerts and artistic programs.
They also assess the situation of artists and writers under the Iranian Regime as artists are so often a target of the mullahs.
Representative offices of the NCRI
These are not based in Paris, unlike most of the NCRI, and are situated in countries across Europe and in the US. These offices must maintain contact with their country’s local and national governments, NGOs, and Iranian Diaspora.