Tafrishi Defects

On August 30, 2001, Jamshid Tafrishi submitted an affidavit to the U.S. Court of Appeals regarding the MEK in which he confessed to being a former agent of Iran's Ministry of Intelligence and Security. He stated:

"From 1995 until 1999, I received a total of 72,000 dollars from the Intelligence Ministry as payment for my work on their behalf."1

Tafrishi said he was assigned by the MOIS to recruit disaffected members of the People's Mojahedin and to accuse the organization of violating human rights, as someone who had previously worked with them.

Tafrishi said he also was "assigned to inform international organizations as well as foreign governments that PMOI was involved in suppressing the Kurdish rebellion in Iraq."2 (emphasis added)

"The plan," he explained, "was conducted under the supervision of Nasser Khajeh-Nouri, who was the regime's agent in the United States. He organized [an] interview for me and other agents with an Iranian radio station in Los Angeles to tell our story that PMOI suppressed the Kurdish people along [with] the Iraqi forces."3

Tafrishi said his name was attached to a report prepared by Khajeh-Nouri that alleged the PMOI helped Saddam suppress the Kurds. The document was then sent to U.S. intelligence and government agencies, as well as the United Nations. "Consequently," Tafrishi said, "a U.S. Non-Governmental Organization, International Educational Development [organization], prepared a report of their investigation on this issue refuting our allegations against the Mojahedin, which was published as [a] U.N. document on August 22, 1995."4

Second UN Report

International Educational Development submitted a second report regarding Tafrishi to the United Nations on January 23, 2001. In the statement, IED said "Mr. Tafrishi now freely admits that we [IED] were correct.5

"Mr. Tafrishi has recently written letters in which he reveals that the Intelligence Ministry of the Iranian regime hired him (apparently paying him $72,000 in addition to travel and other expenses) especially to carry out a mininformation campaign about the NLA, with false accusations that the NLA had itself engaged in violations of human rights or intimidation or extortion of the Iranian exile community."6

"A number of human rights organizations were treated to false testimony and government-orchestrated letter writing campaigns," the report stated. "Unfortunately, some of these organizations may have believed the misinformation."7

1) "Affidavit of Jamshid Tafrishi," U.S. Court of Appeals, August 30, 2001.

2) Ibid.

3) Ibid.

4) Ibid.

5) "Written Statement Submitted by International Educational Development, Inc., a Non-Governmental Organization on the Roster," Commission on Human Rights. 57th Session. Item 9 of the Provisional Agenda. United Nations. E/CN.4/2001/NGO/51, January 23, 2001.

6) Ibid.

7) Ibid.