Antonio Stango, President of the Italian Ligue for Human Rights:
In my close association with the Iranian resistance over the past many years, I have had many privileges. One of the main privilege was to go to camp Ashraf. I was part of possibly the last delegation from Europe to Ashraf, and it was extremely impressive for me to be among the brothers and sisters of the Iranian resistance there. Then, several years later, I had another privilege: to meet most of the same people from Ashraf in Albania. And I am pretty sure that they will see our conference today, and so I want to say thank all of them for what they have done over the years and still continue to do. They set up a great example of resistance in spite of many difficulties, with bravery and we all of us should be proud of being their friends.
I have also been the coordinator of the Italian committee of parliamentarians and citizens for a free Iran for many years. We have actually done many things for this: to raise awareness in Italy, to collect signatures on petitions appeals, to lobby towards not only the Italian government but also at an international level. And we are doing this now at a time when the people of Iran are really uprising and we should indicate that that is the future and that is our duty to support them in every possible way. So I agree with my friend Mr. Dalia on the fact that we will definitely continue to be a part of the resistance, not only to be on the same side, but to be something more.
Finally, I was also emotional when in the midst of the uprising just at the very beginning of January, I had the possibility to speak through social media, before the connection was interrupted with one of the student leaders of the protest in Tehran, who was almost sure to be arrested again, to be tortured again, as it had happened several years ago already to him. And then we managed to publish his remarks in one of the main Italian newspapers. But what he said and what I repeat and I engaged to do, he asked “Please be our voice in Europe.” So this is what we will continue to do, to be the voice of the Iranian people who are struggling with all the possible bravery for freedom and for the life and the future of Iran. Thank you so much