A number of Italian and international news organizations also attended the conference.
Having traveled to Rome from Washington to state his opposition to Khatami's visit and declare solidarity with the Iranian Resistance, Mr. Faleomavaega expressed his profound dismay and that of his colleagues in the U.S. Congress over the Italian government's invitation to Khatami.
He also emphasized that Khatami has always been part of the religious regime ruling Iran and never distanced himself from the atrocities perpetrated by the mullahs.
Congressman Faleomavaega referred to the recent statement of support by a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives for the Mojahedin, adding: "The Mojahedin is the only organization which provides accurate information to the international community about terrorism, killings and human rights violations continuing in Iran. We must thank the relentless efforts of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi in informing the world public of these crimes. The Iranian regime tops the list of terrorist states."
Ms. Mitra Bagheri and Mr. Parviz Khaza'i, NCR's representatives in Italy and Nordic countries, respectively, also took part in the conference.
Ms. Bagheri read out parts of the letter to Pope John Paul II by Mr. Massoud Rajavi, President of the National Council of Resistance of Iran.
The letter said in part: "Religious minorities, including the followers of Christianity, are facing an assortment of restrictions and prohibitions in holding their religious services and teaching. The clerical regime perpetrates these atrocities under the banner of Islam. Whereas Islam, like other great religions, has always promoted mercy, compassion and forgiveness. These crimes are in no way connected to Islam. In truth, the mullahs ruling Iran are those Pharisees whom Jesus Christ had described as "snakes" and "brood of vipers," who "come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves." (Mathew, 23 and 7)
Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
March 11, 1999