Iranian spymaster on trial in Belgium had contacts all over Europe, evidence shows

National Council of Resistance of IranAN IRANIAN DIPLOMAT, WHO in reality was the head of Iran’s European spy network, had contacts all over Europe, which are now being investigated by Western intelligence agencies, according to reports. Four Iranians are currently on trial in Belgium, accused of plotting to bomb the annual conference of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) —an umbrella group of Iranian expatriates who are opposed to the government in Tehran. Participants at the high-profile conference, which took place in June 2018 in a Paris, included over 30 senior United States officials. Among them was the then-US President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, who addressed the meeting. Stephen Harper, Canada’s former prime minister, also spoke at the conference.

According to Belgian authorities, the four members of the Iranian sleeper cell were planning to bomb the NCRI conference on instructions by the Iranian government. The leader of the cell was reportedly Assadollah Assadi, who was arrested in Germany on July 1, 2018. Prosecutors claim that Assadi was stationed under official cover at the Iranian embassy in Vienna. In reality, however, he was allegedly the Europe bureau chief for the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence. Prosecutors claim that Assadi traveled to Luxembourg, where he met two Belgium-based members of the cell, Amir Saadouni and Nasimeh Naami.

During their meeting at a Pizza Hut restaurant, Assadi reportedly gave Saadouni and Naami a bag with 500g of explosives, a USB stick with instructions on how to build a bomb, a new cell phone, and £16,000 in cash. The two spy cell operatives then built the bomb, placed it in a toiletry bag and handed it over to the fourth alleged member of the spy cell, Mehrdad Arefani, who was tasked with placing it inside the NCRI conference hall. However, German and Belgian security services foiled the plot, allegedly after a tip from Israeli intelligence.

Now a new report claims that Western spy agencies are combing through “a green notebook” found in the car that Assadi was driving when he was arrested in Germany. The notebook allegedly contains “289 places across 11 European countries”, where Assadi is thought to have met with Iranian spies operating in Europe. According to the report, the locations recorded in Assadi’s notebook include parks, hiking trails, tourist sites, restaurants, hotels and retail stores. They are located in countries like Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Sweden, Belgium, Switzerland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Luxembourg.

Assadi faces 20 years in prison, if convicted. The other three Iranians face between 10 and 15 years in prison. A judge in the Belgian city of Antwerp is expected to deliver the court’s verdict and impose sentence on the Iranians on Thursday of this week.

Author: Joseph Fitsanakis | Date: 1 February 2021 | Permalink

8 Responses to Iranian spymaster on trial in Belgium had contacts all over Europe, evidence shows

  1. Rindert van Dijk says:

    The Iranians are on trial in Belgium (not in the Netherlands)

  2. Henk Stijntjes says:

    Pleased be advised that Antwerp is not a Dutch city. It is a major port in Belgium.

  3. Evert says:

    Antwerp is not a dutch city🤪

  4. Antigoon says:

    Let the Dutch-Belgian culture war commence!

  5. intelNews says:

    My apologies to our Belgian friends! This error is even worse considering I was in Antwerp almost exactly a year ago… [JF]

  6. Iconoclast XIII says:

    All are subject to error, there are no exceptions. But for a senior officer to carry such a list on his person while on hostile ground, even if encoded… Maybe he learned tradecraft by studying the Watergate break in?

  7. Marcus Wolfe says:

    Perhaps he spilled the locations of meetups & safehouses and Western services are planting the notebook story to make him look incompetent & to protect him if he’s a double agent.

  8. Iconoclast XIII says:

    Marukus Wolfe offers a good explanation. Can only add that Assadi account could also be an attempt to burn him with his own. Imagine how many variations JJ Angleton could have come up with here!.

    How people who do CI for a livng remain sane–or relaively so–is a mystery to me.

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