According to the head of the Intelligence Department in a northern province in Iran, at least 110 Iranians were “dealt with” for their communications with an opposition group.
According to Alireza Rezaie who heads the Eastern Azarbaijan Intelligence Department, sixty of these people were detained while 50 were given notices by security services.
In comments carried by the state-run Fars News Agency, the intelligence official stressed that one of the biggest challenges that the regime faced was foreign intelligence services
“One of the activities of these intelligence services is to gather intelligence from all the country’s departments and to infiltrate various institutions,” Rezaie said.
“Foreign intelligence services use the capacities of exiled dissident groups such as the Monafeghin (derogatory term for the MEK), monarchists, leftist groups and separatists and manage and lead them in local, national and international levels to reach their goals”, the head of the Intelligence Department added.
He cited what he considered to be the key duties of dissident groups and said they included “creating disagreements between the various factions of the state and disagreements between officials”, disclosing the regime’s inefficiencies, and “encouraging an anti-Islamic culture”.
According to Rezaie, the MEK became more active in the East Azarbaijan Province in 2018 adding that the opposition group was tasked with gathering intelligence in 2019.
“Last year, the (MEK) took advantage of the economic and social conditions to extend its activities”, he said adding that 60 people affiliated with the MEK were “dealt with”.
Before this, Iran’s Minister of Intelligence, Mahmoud Alavi, said that numerous teams affiliated with Iranian dissident groups were arrested in 2018. “Over the past year, intelligence forces managed to identify and destroy 144 Takfiris (dissidents), terrorist teams, 116 cells linked to the Monafeghin (MEK), 44 anti-revolutionary groups, and 380 drug dealers,” Alavi said, addressing a congregation of worshipers in Tehran on April 19th.
According to the National Council of Resistance, more than 116 people were arrested by the regime in 2018.
In a recent statement, the NCRI disclosed the names of 28 political prisoners who are currently in prison and called for urgent international measures for their immediate release.