As the movement for regime change progresses in Iran and Resistance networks made significant progress in organizing demonstrations and mobilizing against Ali Khamenei’s dictatorship, the CNRI, the opposition coalition, called on the international community to adopt a wise policy towards the Iranian crisis. So what is the National Council of Resistance in Iran? Visit and learn more about Iran resistances and Iran politics.

The organization and constitution of the CNRI

But let us return to the subject of this paper and talk about the Iranian opposition. It is indeed a national resistance council, just as our French CNR was during the Second World War. On July 21, 1981, marking the anniversary of the 1952 Iranian people’s uprising against the Shah and in support of nationalist leader Mohammad Mossadegh, and one month after the start of mass executions of regime opponents, Massoud Rajavi, then leader of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI), announced in Tehran the formation of a coalition of democratic opposition forces seeking to overthrow the regime of the Supreme Leader of the Mullahs and establish a pluralist democracy in Iran. The CNRI is therefore a coalition of democratic movements that dare to resist the dictatorship and whose main component is the PMOI.

In the autumn of 1981, from its headquarters in France, in the Paris suburbs, the National Council of Iranian Resistance undertook a long series of meetings. The goal:

  • Elaborate and adopt the constitution of the board;
  • Develop and adopt a provisional government programme;
  • Design the internal modus operandi of the CNRI.

Just a few days later, all the documents resulting from these reflections are published. Transparency is required. The CNRI is composed of 540 members and all ethnic and religious minorities are represented (Persians, Arabs, Turks, Turkmen, Baloch, Kurds, Armenians, Zoroastrians, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Atheists…). In fact, the CNRI brings together all democratic opposition to the regime. There are as many liberals as there are Marxists, as well as representatives of the various religions in Iran. Women are also very well represented since they are in the majority on the board (52%). Each member represents one vote and all decisions are taken by a simple majority.

 For a sovereign democracy

Internally, the council is subdivided into 25 commissions, which will form the basis of the provisional government once the mullahs’ regime has fallen. And it is already written that this provisional government has only one task: to organize free and fair elections, within a maximum period of 6 months, for a national legislative and constituent assembly in order to transfer power to the representatives of the people of Iran. In November 2002, the CNRI adopted a plan to form the “National Solidarity Front for the Overthrow of the Religious Dictatorship in Iran”. In the words of Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, the Front must reflect “the deepest democratic desires of the Iranian people, beyond ideologies, beliefs, religions and ethnic groups that transcend all political and partisan interests”.

In its reality, the CNRI is a force that has been organized for many years, ready to fight the regime’s supporters, in order to regain a freedom that has been absent in Iran since the Shah’s reign, except for the short time Mohammad Mossadegh came to power in the early 1950s. A credible, reliable, united and serious force, the CNRI has repeatedly demonstrated to the international community its inflexible commitment to democracy. The CNRI is well established in the country and benefits from the work of internal networks capable of providing very valuable information, also on the development of Iran’s military nuclear programme. Let us remember that it was indeed through the CNRI that the international community was able to learn about the progress of this famous programme, which was then developed in the greatest secrecy. All intelligence services around the world have been able to confirm the veracity and accuracy of the information disclosed by the CNRI since its inception.

Moreover, the existing synergy between the peoples of Iran and the exiled CNRI is well established. The images speak for themselves. There are countless testimonies of hope and support for the CNRI flourishing throughout Iran. The people are waiting for only one thing; the establishment (at last!) of a sovereign democracy in Iran. And he is willing to make efforts and face the daily danger of the mullahs’ repression to obtain what he has been fighting for decades; the fall of the Supreme Leader and the pasdarans.