MEK Resistance Units: Engines of Iran’s Uprisings, Catalysts of Change

BEHIND THE IRAN HEADLINES Series, September 4, 2023, Alireza Jafarzadeh, NCRI-US Deputy Director

Alireza Jafarzadeh, the deputy director of the Washington office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), made the following commentary about how the MEK-affiliated Resistance Units in Iran are showing the path to the rebellious youth and the protesters:

As the anniversary of Iran’s 2022 uprising nears, the critical role of Resistance Units, as the engine for change, comes into sharp focus.

Affiliated with the leading opposition group, the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), these decentralized activist networks have been instrumental in mobilizing citizens and shaping six major nationwide uprisings since December 2017.

Operating under extreme repression, the Resistance Units have functioned as an effective countermeasure to the regime’s suppressive tactics and have galvanized a public yearning for democracy and freedom.

MEK’s Resistance Units have grown in number and have evolved into a model for young Iranians. Their organizational prowess and capacity to rebuild and recruit have been phenomenal.

Although over 3,600 members have been imprisoned or gone missing since the uprisings began, their resilience and growth reflect a significant achievement.

The 2022 uprising was a turning point for the Resistance Units, witnessing an unprecedented 3,000 counter-suppression operations led by them. The Resistance Units have become a nightmare for the regime, evident in its internal documents and relentless demonization campaigns, and a beacon of hope for the Iranian youth, pointing toward an alternative future, a democratic republic.

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