MKO losing the opportunity to run its new plot

The February 9th mortar attack on the Temporary Transit Location (TTL) for the members of the Mujahedin MKO losing the opportunity to run its new plot Khalq Organization known as Camp Liberty, which left 7 dead and dozens injured, opened a new opportunity to the group leaders to run their new plot:”Return to Ashraf”.

The group said that more than 100 had been injured in the shelling and its demands to return to its previous location in Iraq, Camp Ashraf, had been ignored, New York Times reported.[1]

A few hours after the Liberty attack, the MKO websites launched largescale propaganda over the issue. They held an event where a number of their supporters including Howard Dean, Patrick Kennedy, and Strauan Stevenson, spoke on behalf of the group’s recently taken agenda; they all called for residents’ return to Camp Ashraf. Among the event speakers was Rudy Giuliani, former mayor of New York who condemned Martin Kobler and even former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton for not protecting Liberty residents. He went further and suggested the relocation of Liberty residents to the United States territory. Surprisingly, this part of his speech is no more available on YouTube or the MKO websites. It seems that Mr. Giuliani’s passionate speech was not completely in line with the group’s tactic.

The attack on Liberty that only victimized the suffering hostages held in the MKO’s cult-like structure provided more fuel for the group’s propaganda machine to condemn Iraqi government for its so-called violent act.

New York Times quoted Ali Al Mousavi, saying the accusation from the MEK "is not the first time when they blame us for everything.”[2]

Since the collapse of Iraqi Baath regime, in 2003 and the takeover of camp Ashraf by American military, the MKO was ordered by the new Iraqi government to leave Iraqi territory. Ultimately, in late December 2011, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the UN, Iraqi Government and the MKO in order to evacuate Camp Ashraf and the relocation of its resident in the former American Camp near Baghdad airport, Camp Liberty. But, the MOU didn’t work until the US government promised to remove the group from its list of Foreign Terrorist Organization. the NY Times clarifies:” The MEK had long resisted leaving Camp Ashraf, on land that had been set aside by Saddam Hussein, the toppled Iraqi dictator, and did so only because the United States made it a condition of dropping the group’s terrorist designation”. The report also notifies, “An American official said in August that the MEK had been using Camp Ashraf for paramilitary training.”[3]

The group was delisted in September 2011, only a few weeks after it almost completely evacuated Camp Ashraf. Getting removed from the US black list was a great victory for the MKO that had for years launched a well-funded active lobbying campaign in the US government including the Congress and the Pentagon.

Now that they are no more in the terrorist list they have shifted to the new agenda; return to Ashraf. The attack on TTL (Camp Liberty) provided them with the opportunity to insist on their rude demand but actually it was opposed by the US State Department.

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said on Tuesday, ”The answer for the individuals at (Camp Liberty) is not to relocate back to Ashraf, in our view”, reported the AFP.[4]

“The only peaceful and durable solution for these individuals is resetteltment outside Iraq, and that should continue to be the focus of everything involved in this effort.”[5]

French Foreign Ministry Spokesman Phillipe Lalliot also expressed support over transferring the residents of Liberty underlined its readiness to take part in coordination with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).[6]

MKO is losing the last chances for maintaining its cult in Iraqi territory and this is good news for most Iraqi people. Head of Iraqi human rights group said that Iraq seeks to try absentia the members of the MKO. He said the people of Tuz Khurmato, (a Kurdish area in Iraq) who are victims of the MKO and the trial is going to be held in their city, expressed happiness and satisfaction over the issue. [7]

 

By Mazda Parsi

 

References:

[1] Ghaze, Yasir, Six killed in shelling of Iranian Refugee Camp in Iraq, the NewYork Times,February9,2013

[2]ibid

[3]ibid

[4] AFP, US rejects moving Iranian exiles back to old Camp, Febriary12, 2013

[5]ibid

[6]Aswat al-Iraq, France supports transferring MKO members outside Iraq,February13,2013

[7]ibid


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