The advocacy and contribution of Maryam Rajavi to the Iran resistance against fundamentalism is vivid, thanks to her consistency. She was inducted into the fight against oppression by Masoud Rajavi, who later on became her husband. Her work was the mobilisation of young people into the revolution, especially women, under the Operation Eternal Light banner. It is this beginning that shaped her political journey, catapulting her to her current status.
Maryam began mobilising her fellow ladies against oppressing laws from her time at the Sharif University of Technology. The death of her Sister sparked her resistance journey and has since been the face of Iran women rights. She has participated in nearly all high profile engagements with the aim of providing alternative leadership for Iran.
When the National Resistance Army was formed, Mrs Rajavi was commissioned as its deputy head. The outfit carried out several attacks in Iran and organised several other Iran Resistance missions. She has risen through the ranks to become the President of the National Council of Resistance.
She first went to exile in 1981 in Paris after falling out with her former ally turned foe Ayatollah Khomeini. This was brought out by their difference in political ideology. It is in France that she was made the co-leader of the People’s Mojahedin Organisation, alongside Masoud Rajavi in 1985. They later got married in the same year.
There was intense pressure from the international community owing to the recent attacks carried out by the outfit, which later culminated to their expulsion to Iraq. The People’s Mojahedin Organisation and other like-minded organisation came together to form the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCR), with Iraq as their base.
As the face of Iran protest since her days in school, Mrs Rajavi has received condemnation from The United States, France and some members of the European Union. Her organisation has been level as a terror group due to its constant fighting with the Iranian government. However, the NCR is on the forefront for creating a sustainable Iran human rights policy for all, with a cease to the profiling of its citizens.
Mrs Rajavi has continued to influence Iran politics even in exile. She has called for the formation of a multi-sectoral council for the youth to push for social policies, solidarity for natural calamities victims and mentorship to Islamic women. Her voice has caught the attention of the international community where she is invited to deliver keynote addresses.
Through her effort, the NCR has fostered a coalition of interested parties that champions for Iran human rights, economic recovery program, freedom of religion and robust international engagement. Her role as the transitional leader is guiding the country through a peaceful change of leadership and ushering in new hope for the Iranian people.