Reuters, July 11, 2010: … “An arrest warrant has been issued against 39 leaders and members of the organisation including the PMOI’s head Massoud Rajavi, due to evidence that confirms they committed crimes against humanity,” said Judge Mohammed Abdul-Sahib, a spokesman of the Iraqi High Tribunal. Rajavi’s wife Maryam, leader of the French-based National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the PMOI’s political wing, was also included in the warrant, Abdul Sahib added …
Reuters, July 11, 2010
* Crimes against humanity
* First case against foreigners for Saddam-era crimes
By Muhanad Mohammed
BAGHDAD, July 11 (Reuters) – An Iraqi court ordered the arrest of 39 members of an exiled Iranian opposition group, accusing them of crimes against humanity in helping Saddam Hussein to crush a revolt almost two decades ago, a judge said on Sunday.
The 39 are members of the People’s Mujahideen Organisation of Iran (PMOI), a guerrilla movement opposed to the Iranian government. It sided with the toppled Iraqi dictator, a Sunni Muslim, during the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s but has denied helping Saddam to crack down on long-oppressed majority Shi’ites and ethnic Kurds.
Iran, Iraq and the United States consider the PMOI a terrorist organisation and the now Shi’ite-led Iraqi government has been trying to get it to vacate a base north of Baghdad where around 3,500 of its members have lived for 20 years.
“An arrest warrant has been issued against 39 leaders and members of the organisation including the PMOI’s head Massoud Rajavi, due to evidence that confirms they committed crimes against humanity,” said Judge Mohammed Abdul-Sahib, a spokesman of the Iraqi High Tribunal.
Rajavi’s wife Maryam, leader of the French-based National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the PMOI’s political wing, was also included in the warrant, Abdul Sahib added.
“The 39 Iranian suspects were involved with the former Iraqi security forces in suppressing the 1991 (Shi’ite) uprising against the former Iraqi regime and the killing of Iraqi citizens,” he said.
The PMOI began as an Islamist leftist group opposed to Iran’s late Shah, but fell out with Shi’ite clerics who took power after the 1979 revolution. Mujahideen guerrillas carried out attacks against Iranian targets. Iran executed a large number of PMOI prisoners at the end of the Iran-Iraq war.
Last year, Iraq said it wanted the Iranian opposition exiles based at Camp Ashraf north of Baghdad to leave the country. Iraqi forces took over responsibility for the camp on Jan. 1, 2009 from U.S. troops, who had been guarding it.
Violence erupted there last year when Iraqi security forces tried to enter the camp. At least seven exiles were killed.
Mahdi Uqbaai, a spokesman of the PMOI, said the court was pressured by the government to order the arrests.
“This is a politically motivated decision and it’s the last gift presented from the government of (Prime Minister) Nuri al-Maliki to the Iranian government,” said Uqbaai.
The Iraqi High Tribunal was set up after the 2003 invasion to prosecute crimes against humanity and genocide committed during Saddam’s rule. Any case against the PMOI would be its first against foreigners for Saddam-era crimes. (Editing by Rania El Gamal; editing by David Stamp)
(Maryam Rajavi in terrorist cult’s HQ in Paris)
(massacre of Kurdish people)
Iraqi Criminal Court issues arrest warrant against Massoud and Maryam Rajavi
… The Supreme Iraqi Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant against Massoud Rajavi, head of the Mojahedin Khalq, an Iranian opposition, Arrest warrants Have also been issued against 37 others, including his wife, Maryam Rajavi, and his lieutenant Kazemi, according to (s /1/149) of 13/6/2010, Article (12) in place of Article (15) of the Code of Court No. 10 of 2005, which means that the Iraqi Interior Ministry and Interpol are notified to bring them to court …
(Massoud and Maryam Rajavi the cult leaders)
(Izzat Ebrahim and Massoud Rajavi still at large)
(Maryam Rajavi in terrorist cult’s HQ in Paris)
Al Mutamar, Baghdad, July 04, 2010
Translated by Iran Interlink
Link to the original (Arabic)
The Supreme Iraqi Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant against Massoud Rajavi, head of the Mojahedin Khalq, an Iranian opposition, Arrest warrants Have also been issued against 37 others, including his wife, Maryam Rajavi, and his lieutenant Kazemi, according to (s /1/149) of 13/6/2010, Article (12) in place of Article (15) of the Code of Court No. 10 of 2005, which means that the Iraqi Interior Ministry and Interpol are notified to bring them to court.
On the other hand Diyala recognizes the sovereign responsibility of the Iraqi government and security forces and the dispensing of full security to the camp in the new Iraq Khalis district, (formerly Camp Ashraf) in place of the U.S. troops who were responsible for the inside of Camp New Iraq since the fall of the former regime in 2003.
An official ceremony took place on Friday, the 2nd July which was attended by a number of security leaders and military personnel in the Iraqi army and the U.S. within Camp New Iraq (camp Ashraf earlier) according to the implementation of the security agreement signed between Iraq and the United States for the delivery of venues and sites by the U.S. military to the Iraqi government and Iraqi military in order to achieve Iraq’s full sovereignty over its territory and be responsible for maintaining security and order throughout Iraq. The Iraqi army and the Iraqi security apparatus and the government will take responsibility as the Iraqi administration for the overall security of Camp Ashraf (Mojahedin-e Khalq).
A ceremony took place at Camp New Iraq (Camp Ashraf) in the presence of Iranian families in front of the gate of Camp Ashraf who have been there for four months. The families looked forward to the receipt of responsibility for camp Ashraf by the Iraqi government and the Iraqi security from U.S. troops, stressing that U.S. military commanders have, over the past eight years, been supporting the policies and negative attitudes of the organization and leaders within the camp, as well as not sympathising with the families from Iran, nor responding to their demands to meet their children who are detainees inside the camp without the intervention and control officials in the organization, and their rejection of the responsibility over the past years to intervene to end the suffering of families and the pressure on the organization’s leaders to allow the families of Iranian access to their children. The families hope to soon embrace their children and return them to their homes after the success of the Iraqi government and security services in regaining sovereignty and security of the Camp New Iraq (Camp Ashraf).
المحكمة الجنائية تصدر مذكرة أعتقال ضد مسعود رجوي .. الحكومة العراقية تستلم ( معسكر اشرف) رسميا
علمت (المؤتمر) ان المحكمة الجنائية العراقية العليا اصدرت مذكرة القاء القبض بحق مسعود رجوي رئيس منظمة مجاهدي خلق الايرانية المعارضة بالاضافة الى مذكرات اعتقال تشمل 37 شخصا اخرين من بينهم زوجته مريم رجوي وامير كاظمي ، حسب (ق / 1 / 149) الصادر في 13 / 6/ 2010 ، وفق المادة (12) بدل المادة (15) من قانون المحكمة رقم 10 لسنة 2005 ، مما يعني ان على وزارة الداخلية العراقية والانتربول الدولي ملاحظة هؤلاء وتقديمهم للمحكمة .
من جهة اخرى شهدت محافظة ديالى تسلم الحكومة العراقية والقوات الامنية التابعة لها المسؤولية السيادية والامنية الكاملة لمعسكر العراق الجديد في قضاء الخالص ( معسكر اشرف سابقا ً) من القوات الامريكية التي كانت مستقرة داخل المعسكرمنذ سقوط النظام السابق في عام 2003 .
جاء ذلك خلال حفل رسمي جرى يوم الجمعة المصادف الثاني من شهر تموز / يوليو الجاري حضره عدد من القادة الامنيين والعسكريين في الجيش العراقي والاميركي داخل مقرمعسكر العراق الجديد ( معسكر اشرف سابقا ً ) تنفيذا ً لبنود الاتفاقية الامنية الموقعة بين العراق والولايات المتحدة وذلك بتسليم المقرات والمواقع العسكرية الشاغلة من قبل الجيش الامريكي الى الحكومة العراقية لتحقيق سيادة العراق الكاملة على اراضيه وتكون مسؤولية حفظ الامن والنظام في كافة ارجاء العراق بعهدة قوات الجيش والاجهزة الامنية العراقية ، حيث ستتولى الحكومة العراقية المسؤولية الادارية والامنية الكاملة لمعسكر اشرف (مقرمنظمة خلق) .
وشهد حفل تسليم معسكر العراق الجديد (معسكر اشرف) حضور العوائل الايرانية المعتصمة امام بوابة المعسكرمنذ اربعة اشهر والتي بدورها فرحت كثيرا لاستلام الحكومة والاجهزة الامنية العراقية مسؤولية معسكراشرف من القوات الاميركية ، مؤكدين ان القادة العسكريين الاميركيين وخلال السنوات الثمانية الماضية كانوا من المؤيدين للسياسات والمواقف السلبية للمنظمة وقادتها داخل المعسكر ، فضلا عن عدم الوقوف مع العوائل الايرانية والاستجابة لمطاليبهم للقاء بأبنائهم المحتجزين داخل المعسكر بدون تدخل ومراقبة المسؤولين في المنظمة ، ورفضهم الدائم طيلة السنوات الماضية التدخل لانهاء معاناة العوائل والضغط على قادة المنظمة للسماح للعوائل الايرانية بمقابلة ابنائهم ، معربين عن املهم الكبير في رؤية واحتضان ابنائهم والعودة بهم الى ديارهم بعد استلام الحكومة العراقية والاجهزة الامنية الساندة لها سيادة وامن معسكرالعراق الجديد ( معسكر اشرف).
Official American version of events at Camp Ashraf
… There were allegations during the year that some of the 3,400 members of the MEK terrorist organization located at Ashraf were denied the right to leave under threat of reprisal from MEK leaders. These allegations were corroborated by several former Ashraf residents who had fled the camp. Individuals claimed to have been subjected to psychological and physical abuse …
(Massoud and Maryam Rajavi, cult leaders)
State Department, USA, March 2010
2009 Human Rights Report: Iraq
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
2009 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices
March 11, 2010
Link to the full report
a. Arbitrary or Unlawful Deprivation of Life
On July 28, clashes erupted at Ashraf in Diyala Province when the ISF attempted to establish a police presence inside the more than 3,400-person compound of the terrorist Iranian dissident group Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK). The clashes resulted in the deaths of 11 MEK members and injuries to 30 ISF officers. The government credibly claimed the MEK provoked the clashes by staging a violent demonstration to block the ISF from entering the compound.
d. Freedom of Movement, Internally Displaced Persons, Protection of Refugees, and Stateless Persons
There were allegations during the year that some of the 3,400 members of the MEK terrorist organization located at Ashraf were denied the right to leave under threat of reprisal from MEK leaders. These allegations were corroborated by several former Ashraf residents who had fled the camp. Individuals claimed to have been subjected to psychological and physical abuse, including threats of reprisal against family members and solitary confinement in Ashraf to discourage defections.
The secretary of US embassy exposed Mojahedin Khalq(MKO, MEK,PMOI, Rajavi cult) leadership
… The second secretary of the American embassy in Baghdad, published a documented report on the crimes committed by the MEK’s leaders who bloodshed their own colleagues, raped the women of Ashraf, poisoned and executed dozens of the defectors …
Fars News Agency,Translated by Nejat NGO, October 22, 2008
Link to the orginal reprot (Persian)
The Second secretary of US embassy report on the horrible crimes of MKO leader
The second secretary of the American embassy in Baghdad, published a documented report on the crimes committed by the MEK’s leaders who bloodshed their own colleagues, raped the women of Ashraf, poisoned and executed dozens of the defectors.
According to FNA reporter in Baghdad, the second secretary of American embassy in Baghdad, William, revealed the bloody violence of Masud Rajavi, MKO leader, against the dissident members, in the third and forth chapter of the report on the actual situation of Mujahedin.
The American official, who investigated the documents and files on Mujahedin, has been one of the authorities who control Camp Ashraf. The report reads:
Like Malik Farough, the former king of Jordan, Masud Rajavi abuses even his female colleagues.”
In another part of the report you can read:
” Rajavi has expanded sexual relations with the female military, political and administrative ranks of the group. He also ordered the doctors to do hysterectomy surgery on some of them.
He noted that he has watched the films of the confessions of the women.
The second secretary of the American embassy mentioned that Rajavi sent the husbands to the deadly operations so as he can reach the wives and possess them in Napoleon’s way. In the existing documents in Ashraf you find out that some of the deaths in the group were not random but intentionally planned. In his long report William noted three cases of the planned deaths and wrote:
”the confessions of some of group members reveal that Rajavi was involved in 19 cases of death personally ordering the assassination.”
This American authority points out poisoning of the members and writes:
“Rajavi ordered the silent death, poisoning some friends or colleagues.
Now, it is clear for the US that MEK’s leader was involved in the suspicious death of his colleagues who were killed under his order but their death was reported falsely as the result of sickness or accident.
He continued mentioning that the forces of MEK are disappointed at the present time in Iraq and present no benefit to the US administration in the current Iraqi scene.
In a part of the report he writes:
Most of Mujahedin forces are suffering dangerous mental diseases and are likely to commit suicide or homicide.
Besides the Iraqi security authorities stressed that the Americans investigated some individuals who confessed that the MEK leader was involved in the assassination of Iranians residing abroad and some defectors of the group. To commit the assassinations, MKO enjoyed the assistance of embassies of the Saddam’s regime and his security organizations.
British Minister of State: We believe it is in the interest of residents to cooperate peacefully with Iraqi authorities
… Government of Iraq would deal with the residents of the camp with respect for their human rights in co-operation with the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross. We believe it is in the interests of the residents to respect and accept the decision made by the Government of Iraq, and to cooperate peacefully with the Iraqi authorities …
House of Commons, British Parliament, March 16, 2010
David Drew (Stroud, Labour)
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has made to the government of Iraq on the situation in Camp Ashraf; and if he will take steps to ensure that residents of Camp Ashraf are not driven from Iraq.
Ivan Lewis (Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs), Foreign and Commonwealth Office; Bury South, Labour)
We have discussed the situation at Camp Ashraf with the Iraqi Prime Minister, the Foreign Minister, the Human Rights Minister, the Minister of Internal Affairs and the Iraqi Government’s Ashraf Committee. I met the Iraqi Foreign Minister in Baghdad in December 2009 and underlined the need for the Iraqi authorities to deal with the residents of Camp Ashraf in a way that meets international humanitarian standards. In addition we discuss the issue with the UN, US, and the EU.
The Iraqi authorities have told the residents that they can no longer stay at Camp Ashraf but has given assurances that no residents will be forcibly transferred to a country where they have reason to fear persecution, or where substantial grounds exist to believe they would be tortured. The Iraqi Human Rights Minister confirmed to our ambassador on 27 January 2010 that the Government of Iraq would deal with the residents of the camp with respect for their human rights in co-operation with the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross. We believe it is in the interests of the residents to respect and accept the decision made by the Government of Iraq, and to cooperate peacefully with the Iraqi authorities.
UK Parliament – some sensible answers to Mojahedin (Rajavi cult) claims
… In the case of occupied territory, the Convention continues to apply for a year after the general close of military operations, and partially thereafter if the occupying power continues to exercise the functions of government. The occupation of Iraq formally ended on 30 June 2004…
UK Parliament, April 20-21 2009
Monday, 20 April 2009
Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Iraq: Mujahedin-e Khalq
David Drew (Stroud, Labour)
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports he has received of alleged attacks on residents in Ashraf City by members of the Iraqi secret service; and if he will make a statement.
Bill Rammell (Minister of State, Foreign & Commonwealth Office; Harlow, Labour)
holding answer 20 March 2009
We are aware that such allegations have surfaced in the Iraqi media. We have discussed these allegations with the US, who retain a presence inside Camp Ashraf, and with the Iraqi government. We have seen no evidence to support the allegations.
Monday, 20 April 2009
House of Lords
Lord Maginnis of Drumglass (Crossbench)
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they have taken to ensure that Camp Ashraf residents who are members of the People’s Mujaheddin Organisation of Iran are not expelled to Iran by the Iraqi authorities; and what alternatives to that they have proposed through the United Nations.
Lord Malloch-Brown (Minister of State, Foreign & Commonwealth Office; Labour)
Responsibility for the security and administration of Camp Ashraf was transferred on 1 January 2009 from the US to the Iraqi authorities. Prior to this handover the US received assurances from the Iraqi authorities towards their clear commitment to the humane treatment and continued well-being of the camp residents. The US retains a presence at the camp in an advisory/monitoring capacity.
The Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights visits the camp and has delivered assurances to a representative body of the residents. The International Committee of the Red Cross follows developments at the camp closely and continues to visit. It also discusses on a confidential basis all of the issues surrounding the camp with the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK) and the Iraqi and US authorities.
The UN High Commission for Refugees has previously determined that Camp Ashraf residents do not qualify as refugees. While there is no evidence to suggest that the Government of Iraq intend forcibly to relocate the residents, our Embassy in Baghdad has requested a call on the Ministry of Human Rights to make known the level of interest in this issue in the UK and to remind the Iraqi Government of their earlier assurances. Our Embassy in Baghdad is also pursuing the possibility of a visit to the camp by a consular official.
Tuesday, 21 April 2009
House of Lords
Lord King of West Bromwich (Labour)
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the Government of Iraq to safeguard the human rights and safety of Iranian residents in Ashraf City; and with what results.
Lord Malloch-Brown (Minister of State, Foreign & Commonwealth Office; Labour)
The US held responsibility for the security and administration of Camp Ashraf until 1 January 2009. Responsibility was then transferred from the US to Iraqi authorities. The modalities of the transfer had been discussed by both sides with UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq. Prior to the transfer, the US received assurances from the Iraqi authorities towards their clear commitment to the humane treatment and continued wellbeing of the camp residents. The US retains a presence at the camp in an advisory/monitoring capacity.
The Government of Iraq have stated that no Camp Ashraf residents will be forcibly transferred to a country where they have reason to fear persecution. The Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights visits the camp and has delivered assurances to a representative body of the residents. The International Committee of the Red Cross follows developments at the camp closely and continues to visit. It also discusses on a confidential basis all of the issues surrounding the camp with the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MeK) and the Iraqi and US authorities.
While no specific representations to the Government of Iraq have been made, our embassy in Baghdad has requested a call on the Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights to make known the level of interest in this issue in the UK and to remind the Iraqi Government of its earlier assurances. In addition to this, as stated by my honourable friend, Bill Rammell, Minister of State for the Middle East, during an adjournment debate in Westminster Hall on 25 March 2009 (Hansard, col. 90WH) “the British embassy in Baghdad is pursuing the possibility of a visit by a consular official to Camp Ashraf” to ascertain whether any of its residents might be entitled to consular assistance.
Library of the House of Commons
In brief: Camp Ashraf and the Geneva Conventions
Standard note: SN/IA/05022
Last updated: 20 March 2009
Author: Arabella Thorp
Section: International Affairs and Defence Section
What is Camp Ashraf ?
Ashraf is a settlement in Iraq’s Diyala province, near the border with Iran, which houses the headquarters of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (PMOI), also known as Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK) or Mujahideen-e-Khalq Organisation (MKO). The PMOI is the main body in the coalition of Iranian opposition groups known as the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), and is regarded as a terrorist organisation by a number of states but has now been removed from the UK and EU lists of terrorist organisations. It sided with Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq War, but following the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 the PMOI surrendered to US forces and 3,800 PMOI members were disarmed and cantoned in Camp Ashraf. Some 370 have since been voluntarily repatriated to Iran , and in 2004 restrictions and controls were removed. The Iraqi government has stated its intention to close the camp and expel all PMOI personnel from Iraqi territory.
Who is responsible for the inhabitants of Ashraf?
The main responsibility to protect civilians lies with the states that have effective control over them. From 2003 until 31 December 2008 US forces protected Camp Ashraf. Then on 1 January 2009, control passed to the Iraqi Government, under the new US-Iraq Status of Forces Agreement. Both the US and Iraqi governments have given assurances that, within the framework of Iraqi national legislation, Ashraf residents will be treated in accordance with international humanitarian law and with the principle of non-refoulement in particular. The UK considers the issue primarily a US rather than a UK responsibility.
What are the main concerns?
Lliving conditions at Ashraf are not generally a cause for concern, although an explosion damaged Ashraf’s water-supply station in February 2008. The main concern is that its inhabitants would be at risk of torture or other serious human rights violations if they were to be returned involuntarily to Iran. Iraq has reportedly given Ashraf’s inhabitants two options: return to Iran or find a third country for exile. Iraqi officials have however stated that PMOI members would not be forcibly repatriated to Iran and have called upon the international community to offer asylum to Ashraf’s occupants.
People who have left Camp Ashraf voluntarily have reported ‘brain-washing’, forced indoctrination and rough treatment by the PMOI of those who wanted to leave the camp.
This information is provided to Members of Parliament in support of their parliamentary duties and is not intended to address the specific circumstances of any particular individual. It should not be relied upon as being up to date; the law or policies may have changed since it was last updated; and it should not be relied upon as legal or professional advice or as a substitute for it. A suitably qualified professional should be consulted if specific advice or information is required. This information is provided subject to our general terms and conditions which are available online or may be provided on request in hard copy. Authors are available to discuss the content of this briefing with Members and their staff, but not with the general public.
Do the Geneva Conventions apply?
In July 2004, the PMOI forces in Ashraf were declared by the US to be ‘protected persons’ under the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, because they had not been belligerents during the Iraq War. The Fourth Geneva Convention protects civilians who, as the result of an international armed conflict or of occupation, find themselves in the hands of a country of which they are not nationals. It states that in no circumstances shall a protected person be transferred to a country where he or she may have reason to fear persecution for his or her political opinions or religious beliefs.
In the case of occupied territory, the Convention continues to apply for a year after the general close of military operations, and partially thereafter if the occupying power continues to exercise the functions of government. The occupation of Iraq formally ended on 30 June 2004.
What other international law is relevant?
Under the international law principle of non-refoulement, no-one should be deported, expelled or repatriated if there is a real risk that they may be subjected to any kind of ill-treatment, or that they may face persecution on account of their race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion. The US has ratified international conventions embodying this principle (the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1984 UN Convention Against Torture), but Iraq has not. However, non-refoulement is widely recognised as a principle of customary international law that binds all states.
Jane’s Terrorism and Insurgency Centre, Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK), 5 March 2009 [available through the Parliamentary Intranet]
Juan-Pedro Schaerer, Iraq: ICRC activities in behalf of Iranian nationals living in Ashraf, 3 December 2008
Zouhair Al Hassani, ‘International humanitarian law and its implementation in Iraq ’, International Review of the Red Cross Vol. 90 No. 869, March 2008
Knut Dörmann and Laurent Colassis, ‘International Humanitarian Law in the Iraq Conflict’, German Yearbook of International Law 47 (2004), 293–342
International Committee of the Red Cross, Protected persons and property and international humanitarian law [viewed 20 March 2009]
Amnesty International, Iraq: No Iranians in need of protection should be sent to Iran against their will, 28 August 2008
Amnesty International, Security agreement puts 16,000 Iraqi detainees at risk of torture, 28 November 2008
Massoud Khodabandeh (former member of PMOI), Camp Ashraf: a test of US-Iraqi relations, 7 April 2008
Iran Interlink, Nejat Society Asks UK to Support Iraqi Government Plans for Camp Ashraf Victims, 11 December 2008
Hon. David Kilgour, J.D., ‘Catastrophe on horizon for Camp Ashraf refugees’, Middle East Times 8 October 2008
House of Lords debate, Iraq: Ashraf City, HL Deb 2 March 2009 cc504-6
- Mohammad Hussein Sobhani