On Saturday, February 27, 2016, on the eve of the International Women’s Day, a grand gathering entitled, “Pledge for Parity: Women United against Fundamentalism” was held in the presence of the Iranian Resistance’s President-elect Maryam Rajavi and a number of political dignitaries, intellectuals, prominent personalities, and activists of the equality movement from 26 countries and four continents in Paris Grande Arche of La Defense.
Mrs. Rajavi addressed the Iranian regime’s sham elections saying that what was held yesterday was not an election of people’s representatives. It was a competition between the incumbent and former officials in charge of torture, execution and export of terrorism; something that foiled the myth of moderation of the regime.
Amongst the speakers were Linda Chavez, former White House Director of Public Liaison and US expert to UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights; Rama Yade, former French Minister of Human Rights; Ingrid Betancourt, former Colombian presidential candidate; Rita Sussmuth, former President of German Bundestag; Ranjana Kumari, Director of the Centre for Social Research and 5th winner of the Lotus Leadership Award from India; Nagham Ghaderi, Vice-President of Syrian National Coalition; Rashida Manjoo and Yakin Ertuk, former UN Special Rapporteurs on Violence against Women; Christine Ockrent, French journalist, writer and renowned TV commentator; Beatriz Becerra, member of the European parliament from Spain; Stefania Pezzopane, Italian Senator; Margarita Dur-an Vadell, Spanish Senator; Fatiha Bakkali on behalf of women legislators from Morocco; Najima Thay Thay, former Minister of Education and Youth from Morraco; Anissa Boumediene, former first lady of Algeria, Islamic scholar and jurist; Azza Heikal, Egyptian writer and professor of Arab Academic University affiliated with the Arab League and a leader of women’s council of Arab tribes; Majedeh Novaishi, Vice-President of Arab Women Representatives Coalition from Egypt; Drita Avdyli, former Deputy Minister and current Chairwoman of National Chamber of Mediation, Diana Culi, writer journalist and politician, Sevim Arbana, founder of organization Useful to Albanian Women from Albania; a delegation of jurists, including Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra (Mali), Kristy Brimelow and Sara Chandler (Britain), Chair of Human Rights Commission of Federation of European Bar Associations; Maria Candida Almeida, Attorney General Deputy in the Supreme Court (Portugal); Zinat Mir-Hashemi, member of the National Council of Resistance of Iran and chief editor of Nabard Khalq paper; Safora Sadidi, member of PMOI Central Council; and a number of chairs of associations and communities and youth supportive of the Iranian Resistance.
Ms. Sarvnaz Chitsaz, Chair of NCRI Women’s Committee, Ms. Zolal Habibi, member of PMOI Central Council, and Ms. Linda Chavez were the moderators of the program.
Nancy Pelosi and Baroness Boothroyd, former leaders of the US Congress and UK House of Commons respectively; Loretta Sanchez and Judy Chu, US Congresswomen; and prominent French anthropologist and writer Françoise Heritier sent messages to the conference.
The speakers discussed ways of confronting Islamic extremism as the world’s main challenge. Pointing to the successful example of the Iranian Resistance in realizing women’s equality and pioneering role in all areas of struggle against fundamentalism, they stressed on Mrs. Rajavi’s leadership.