The British Parliamentary Committee for Iran Freedom strongly condemns the acts of violence on Monday 27 August by Iraqi government forces against Iranian dissidents in Camp Ashraf who were preparing for their transfer to Camp Liberty in Baghdad.
Reports from Camp Ashraf, corroborated by photographic evidence, point out that during the inspection process Iraqi forces attacked Ashraf residents with sticks, metal bars, vases, stones, and even inspection table parts in the presence of United Nations monitors. The attack resulted in 20 residents being injured in their arms, heads and faces, including two who received fractures in the arm.
At the behest of the Iranian regime, Iraq's government is attempting to trigger a confrontation at Ashraf in order to break apart the international effort for the residents to peacefully gain UN recognition as refugees and be allowed to resettle in third countries. Fearful of the popular wave of protests in the Middle East reaching Iranian borders, the mullahs' regime seeks to employ Iraq to obliterate its main organised Iranian opposition, the PMOI.
Members of the all-Party Iran Freedom committee have raised concerns over the UN's inaction in the face of violence against the unarmed and defenceless Ashraf residents by Iraqi forces.
We are deeply disturbed by an announcement last week by the former chief of the Human Rights Office of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) pointing out that the top UN official in Iraq, Martin Kobler, was complicit in doctoring and censoring reports of violations of the residents' human rights at Camp Liberty. We were further disturbed to hear that Mr Boumedra had to resign his post to make his views known to the public.
Once again we welcome Mrs. Maryam Rajavi’s initiative to encourage 400 more Ashraf residents to relocate to Camp Liberty to move forward the peaceful process of gaining the residents’ refugee status.
We urge our government, the United States and the UN to urgently put pressure on Iraq to end the violations of the Ashraf residents’ rights to allow a peaceful outcome to the crisis. We call on the UN to recognise Camp Liberty as a refugee camp and take over responsibility for running the camp.
The British Parliamentary Committee for Iran Freedom
28 August 2012