Iranian dissident Masih Alinejad (L) (screenshot); suspect Khalid Mehdiyev (R) (screenshot) screenshot
Masih Alinejad

Khalid Mehdiyev was arrested in Brooklyn with a loaded machine gun, over $1,000 in cash, and multiple license plates in his car.

By United with Israel Staff

At the end of last week, an assailant named Khalid Mehdiyev was arrested in Brooklyn, New York outside the home of an Iranian dissident journalist named Masih Alinejad.

The Iranian-American journalist is a well-known human rights activist and was previously the target of an Islamic Republic kidnapping plot in 2020.

She commented in 2021 after that plot was foiled, “I would love to visit Israel. I’m sure that saying this will lead to more threats against me and my family, but someone should take a step, break this taboo and speak up against this hate propagated by the regime.”

Alinejad has been an outspoken critic of the Iranian regime, opposing its treatment of women and other human rights abuses.

At the time of his arrest, Mehdiyev was toting an AK-47 outside Alinejad’s home, reported local media on Sunday. Investigators reportedly witnessed Mehdiyev circling the Alinejad’s property and looking into her windows.

According to the New York Post, Mehdiyev had already loaded the weapon and was arrested for “lurking for two days.” In addition to the AK-47, police discovered in Mehdiyev’s possession a suitcase with over $1,000 in cash in, as well as a high-capacity magazine, over 60 rounds of ammunition, and multiple license plates.

The failed international kidnapping plot in 2021 was carried out by Iranian intelligence agents attempting to operate in the U.S., where Alinejad resides.

“Four Iranians were charged with conspiracy after they planned to kidnap Alinejad and forcibly bring her to Iran,” said the Jerusalem Post.

Iran denied the allegations.

“This whole kidnapping story is a challenge from the Islamic Republic to the U.S. government,” Alinejad told the Times of Israel in 2021, adding that Tehran was testing Biden to see how he would respond. “If they keep silent, then it is a signal to [Iran], and they’ll come after more citizens on American soil.”

Alinejad told the Times in 2021 that the Mullahs don’t represent the majority of Iranians, “who do not view the U.S. and Israel as the enemy.”

“I’ve received many videos from people within the society, students and the young generation [showing] how they’ve refused to step on the flag of Israel,” commented Alinejad. “We are totally different from our hostage-takers, our oppressors.”

“The narrative that the Islamic Republic always uses — that if you support the Israeli people then you betray your brothers and sisters in Palestine — is wrong. If you’re a true human rights activist, you have to stand with both sides,” she believes.

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