Human Rights Alert

April 15 2003

The Mojahedin announced Sunday 13 April that 28 of their members have been killed and a number of them have gone missing in clashes inside Iraq.

Similar reports have been issued by independent sources.

Ten more Mojahedin have been announced killed Monday 14 in an independent report.

Some of the Mojahedin are also reported to be retreating back into Ashraf base near Baghdad and other bases, after abandoning their weapons in Khaneqin and on other fronts.

According to military experts the casualty figures given are inconsistent with a bombing or mortar attack which could have been launched by either American, Kurdish, Iraqi or Iranian forces. It is much more probable that Mojahedin forces have met in face to face conflict with Kurdish forces while resisting and defending Iraqi military bases as ordered and forced by their leader, and this would account for the high number of casualties and deaths.

It is also not clear what is meant by the Mojahedin claim that many members are missing. It is not usual in a mortar or bombing attack for people to go missing.

One possibility is that there is mutiny inside the Mojahedin with some forces refusing to fight. Some may have run away in search of friendly forces to whom they can surrender. Others may have been fired upon by Mojahedin commanders for refusing to carry out orders.

Whatever the facts, it is hoped that the Mojahedin commanders will realise that the greatest threat they and the forces under their responsibility face is from their own leadership which has abandoned them and expects them to fight an irrelevant and futile war to the death while they escape as a small group to a third country.

What ever happens in the war, it would be entirely unacceptable for Rajavi or his top commanders to add to this current list of missing or killed combatants the names of all the people that were missing before. By doing so, to be rid of dissenters who have caused Rajavi problems over the past few years, and from the other side to claim their blood for his own purposes later as martyrs to Rajavi’s cause by sending them to war with all possible force in order to have them killed and to ‘bank’ their blood. Iran
Interlink has the names of many of these missing people.

Rajavi desperately needs these numbers for his future political ‘expenses’ whether he stays in Iraq under an agreement with the American forces (there are already some reports that his envoys have been seen approaching Ahmad Chalabi and his associates in Nasiriyeh) or whether he goes to another country. He is already using these figures to make the Mojahedin’s supporters feel sorry for them, to give them money and to put pressure on MPs to provide them with safe houses and pass their people over various borders.

Rajavi is fully and personally accountable for the loss of all these Iranian lives (many of whom have no choice in refusing to fight for the residues of Saddam’s regime) and will not be left to act with impunity in these issues.