The Mujahedin-e Khalq in Iraq; A policy Conundrum (13)

What were the identities of all individual MeK members? What was their citizenship? Where did they have rights of residence?

16 The Mujahedin-e Khalq in Iraq: A Policy Conundrum

•  What intelligence could be gained from them about the IRI or Iraq?

•   What were the identities of all individual MeK members? What was their citizenship? Where did they have rights of residence?

To answer these questions, CJTF-7 formed JIATF-Ashraf. The JIATF included representatives from the U.S. military and several civilian departments and would report directly to CJTF-7 on the Camp Ashraf investigation (24).

Military and foreign intelligence questions were handled by DoD intelligence officers and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) personnel. The FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) handled law enforcement and domestic intelligence, interviewed targeted individuals, and conducted a census of each MeK member at Camp Ashraf. U.S. Department of homeland Security (DHS) agencies addressed citizenship and immigration issues for members with ties to the United States.

DOS conducted background interviews with each MeK member at Camp Ashraf and facilitated communication with the embassies of third countries where former MeK members claimed citizenship, residence rights, or family links. All of these agencies, except DHS, were invited to contribute nonvoting advisers to the MeK Review Board. In total, approximately 70 affiliated staff participated in these activities (25).

The MeK Review Board did not decide the legal status of MeK members, but it did classify them into the four categories listed earlier. The board determined that very few should be detained. For instance, a small number were detained for potential prosecution (26).

24 The JIATF reported directly to the detention operations command (TF-134) after it was established in spring 2004 in response to the Abu Ghraib scandal.

25 After its peak activity, its numbers were reduced. By late 2007, JIATF staff at FOB Grizzly comprised only three military personnel plus interpreters.

26  The MeK and its supporters have presented the DOJ and FBI decision not to prosecute more MeK individuals as a U.S. finding that the MeK had not committed terrorist acts. This is not accurate.

DOJ considered only U.S. citizens for prosecution. The agencies made their decisions on the basis of practical and legal considerations, such as whether U.S. courts could assert jurisdiction over each individual, whether sufficient evidence against each individual existed, and whether devoting prison resources in the United States to holding MeK members was sound policy.

A few were taken back to the United States to be prosecuted or to serve as witnesses in prosecutions against MeK cells in the United States. The JIATF did not explore the possibility of prosecutions under Iraqi law.

The Mujahedin-e Khalq in Iraq; A policy Conundrum (12)


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