West should take responsibility for helping former terrorists
... Ms Soltani emphasised that considering the wide range of use of this organisation by western countries during the two decades of Saddam’s war against Iranians, it is expected that help to them would come not from Iran or Iraq but legally and morally should come from Britain, USA and Israel...
by Massoud Khodabandeh, Iran-Interlink, May 2008
Batul Soltani representative and spokesperson of Sahar Family Foundation (Iraq) visited Istanbul in May to participate in a series of meetings concerning the problem of the terrorist Rajavi cult (aka Mojahedin Khalq Organisation) at Camp Ashraf in Iraq and the situation of survivors who have managed to escape the cult and reach Turkey.
Ms Batul Soltani is a former member of the Leadership Council of the Iranian terrorist Mojahedin Khalq Organisation which is currently being protected in Iraq by the American military. Ms Soltani managed to run away from the cult four months ago and reach free society. Since then she has been active with Sahar Family Foundation helping others who have escaped the cult.
Over the past weeks Ms Soltani has been visiting the bases set up by Sahar Family Foundation situated in various locations between Camp Ashraf and third countries. She observed the progress made in the activities of Sahar and improvements to the situation of the people on their way to host countries.
During her visit to Istanbul Ms Soltani visited a number of government officials and NGOs.
Taking time out from her schedule she talked with Iran-Interlink about her work.
In this interview, Ms Soltani emphasised that until the achievement of a final solution by Sahar Family Foundation, all the people who are already under the umbrella of Sahar and those who have not managed to connect with Sahar yet should be on high alert. This was because of plots by the Rajavi cult to capture or harm them. She encouraged those who had escaped to contact Sahar by whatever means they had, including through associations in Europe and North America, to inform her of their situation and ask for help in following situations.
- Arrest, fighting, being followed, or any obstacle put in their path legally or illegally
- Needing lawyers in the fields of getting refugee status or immigration problems during their passage to third countries
- Any problem in their day to day minimum needs including food, clothes, shelter, telephone access and cost of telephone charges
- Any other situation that the person considers as urgent
In conclusion Ms Soltani said she is hopeful that with the increasing help promised by the countries neighbouring Iraq, and the help of NGOs and sponsors who have helped Sahar Family Foundation to this point, there will be a more secure path for the survivors to get to European countries.
She also welcomed the de-proscription of the name of Mojahedin Khalq Organisation from the terrorism list in Great Britain and asked human rights organisations to put pressure on Britain to give political asylum to those people who have been engaged in armed struggle following the same policy as countries hostile toward Iran.
Ms Soltani emphasised that considering the wide range of use of this organisation by western countries during the two decades of Saddam’s war against Iranians, it is expected that help to them would come not from Iran or Iraq but legally and morally should come from Britain, USA and Israel.
Watch the interview:
Questions over American policy toward MEK in Iraq
By Massoud Khodabandeh, Iran-Interlink, May 11, 2008
If, as seems likely, the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MKO, MEK, PMOI) is de-proscribed in the UK, this ought to be good news for the group's 3,300 members in Iraq. I reported on the situation there back in February and concluded that since the Iraqi Government is adamant that the MKO be expelled from the country as a foreign terrorist entity, the only practical solution was for a western government (most probably the UK) to de-proscribe the group so that the members currently trapped in Camp Ashraf could gain safe refuge there.
I am looking to see whether the MKO's western backers will now push for this solution. But I don't hold much hope of that. If I am able to read the situation correctly, the MKO members in Camp Ashraf will be direct victims of the UK court ruling. By now they will have been 'congratulated' on their victory against the Iranian regime and told they will 'soon be in Tehran', although they will not be told how this is to be achieved.
It is clear that the group has deliberately been kept intact for five years and the obvious reason this would be done is so the group can be re-armed at some point and re-deployed against Iran – this time not by Saddam Hussein but by the US Administration. Last December American forces removed half the MKO dissidents from the TIPF adjacent to Camp Ashraf. (One of them drowned recently in a border incident in Turkey, others are still missing, some are in Iraqi Kurdistan and some clandestinely in Turkey. A few have gained safe refuge in Europe.)
On Friday May 2, 2008 American forces completely closed TIPF and transferred the remaining people to Dahouk in Kurdistan. They have been housed for two months and have food rations, but have been told they will then be given over to the UN refugee agency. This leaves many, many questions, and to date no official American answer has been forthcoming.
I would like to know:
Now TIPF has been removed, where can MKO members go if they want to leave the organisation? Are they condemned to stay and serve as "good terrorists" whether on the terrorist lists or not?
Now TIPF has been removed, what are American forces protecting (after 5 years of blaming others for allegedly supporting terrorists)? A terrorist camp? (It must not be forgotten that even if the whole western world removes the MKO from the terrorist lists, they are still regarded - and with good reason - as foreign terrorists in Iraq.)
If, as I have been told, the uniformed militants in Camp Ashraf are free to leave anytime they want, why are MNF forces there 'protecting' them?
If, as has been rumoured, the Americans will hand over Camp Ashraf to the Iraqis by the end of the year, what will happen to the uniformed militants who are now protected there?
Will the likes of Lord Corbett and company, who have been supporting terrorism in Iran and Iraq under the banner of the MKO's Klashinkov for the past thirty years, now at least sponsor a handful of those same people who have been abused by his cult and bring them to safety? Some of them surely are ready to retire on even a small pension!
Have efforts to have the MKO de-proscribed been so that the cult's leaders, including cult guru Massoud Rajavi, can take up residence in London but the members stay to kill and be killed in Iraq and Iran?
At the invitation of Ms Batul Soltani (representative of Sahar NGO in Baghdad) I have visited Turkey to attend various meetings concerning the situation of former MKO people (from TIPF) who are trying to leave Iraq and Turkey. After talking with some of them, it is becoming clear they are facing obstacles and counter measures so that they fail (and even get killed in the way).
The repeated accusation – from a wide range of observers, not only the direct victims - is that the American approach to the MKO has been to deliberately stop people leaving this terrorist cult; that the MKO is maintained by interests who play the card of 'taking them off the list' with the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Ultimately, those who had the power but who have failed or been unable or refused to dismantle a tiny foreign terrorist camp and its military structure in Iraq – despite continued requests by the Iraqi government to do so - are responsible for whatever disaster befalls its victims there.
Errors in UK Court Decision
Gordon Brown: No evidence that MKO has given up terrorism
Open Letter to UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown
The Masters of Terror - Neo-Con General Calls For Terror Attacks In Iran
Terror Most Imperial (Lord Colbert does not do his title justice)
Robin Corbetts Mojahedin Khalq Terrorists, The Beaten Bargaining Chip
Report on the situation of Mojahedin Khalq in Camp Ashraf (Iran interlink. Massoud Khodabandeh, February 2008)
Open Letter to Lord Corbett from Mohammad Sobhani -
Mojahedin Khalq (Rajavi cult) Henchmen in Western countries
Mojahedin violence re-emerging - open letter to Cologne Police Chief about Mojahedin Khalq, Rajavi cult (Massoud Khodabandeh, March 2007)
Evidences Dismissing MKO Mojahedin Khalq Organisation, Rajavi cult headed by Massoud Rajavi and Maryam Rjavi) Disclaim of Terrorism
Cult leader Massoud Rajavi gives go-ahead to kill witnesses in European countries. An open letter to the British Home Secretary Jacqui Smith (Anne Singleton, July 2007)
Questions over American policy toward MEK in Iraq
Camp Ashraf Countdown by Anne Singleton
BBC: group of Mojahedin Khalq (Rajavi cult) defectors arrived in France
The List of Designated Terrorist Organizations Was Released. Rajavi cult failed again in its lobbying efforts