Former MEK members petition the UNHCR in Albania
September 12, 2017
Some nearly 70 former members of the Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization yesterday approached the UNHCR in Albania (RAMSA) with a petition signed by all of them demanding their rights.
RAMSA officials who met with these individuals – who are protesting against their refugee allowances being cut by the MEK – said they are following up the issue with Geneva and there will be an urgent meeting about the case.
The individuals told the officials that over the coming days they would, of course with more people, continue coming to their offices until their rights are restored and that they will not give in.
The RAMSA officials accepted the fact that the MEK has acted against the commitments made in an agreement in Geneva. Presumably the organization did not expect so many defectors. In addition, there are many more inside the group who wish to leave.
The text of the petition handed over to RAMSA is as follows:
Petition to the UNHCR and the Albanian ministry of interior affairs
We, a number of Iranian refugees in Albania and former members of the Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK, MKO …), would like to address all related organs and draw their attentions to our cause.
We accepted the humanitarian invitation by the time Albanian government in cooperation with the USA and the UNHCR in Albania (RAMSA) and moved to this country after being expelled from Iraq.
We decided willingly to dispatch from the MEK and we wish to live freely on our own outside the organization.
We learned that apparently according to some possible agreements between the UNHCR and the MEK, the refugee allowances of the former members should be paid by the MEK directly.
The Organization started paying us 45000 Leks (Albanian currency) and this was made up to September 2017.
But surprisingly the Organization informed us recently that from the coming month no allowances will be paid to us and we can complain to the RAMSA if we wish.
It is worth mentioning that not being able to receive the money means a grave economical difficulty, and consequently psychological pressure, to the refugees who have left the MEK and would make the life impossible for us, since we are not Albanian citizens but refugees who have no financial support what so ever.
Therefore we urge the related organs including the RAMSA and the interior ministry to meet the below demands:
1. Our refugee allowances be paid by RAMSA and we be supported by the United Nations in Albania
2. Work permits and jobs are granted to us in order that we are able to support ourselves.
3. Our Refugee Status is officially issued in order that we can receive our righteous benefits.
Many Thanks and regards
List of signatures: