Mojahedin Khalq will be removed shortly – MKO rights covered by Universal Declaration
Aswat al-Iraq, Baghdad, December 20, 2009
(Translated by Iran Interlink)
BAGHDAD / Aswat al-Iraq:
Iraq’s Minister of Human Rights Ms. Widjan M. Salim, said on Sunday that the entry into the camp under the supervision of the Iraqi forces was a move "first" to inform them of the determination of the Iraqi government to move them to a camp in Baghdad.
Salim told Aswat al-Iraq that the Iraqi government "carried out the first steps towards moving the residents of Ashraf camp to another camp inside the capital Baghdad under the supervision of UN representation in Iraq, as well as the Red Cross and American forces."
Salim indicated that "the members of the MKO do not qualify as refugees, and are not covered by the Geneva Conventions, but the Universal Declaration of Human Rights protects them," noting that the Universal Declaration "stresses the need for humane treatment covered by it, in addition to providing some of the items to them and ways to live without being forced to return to their home countries."
She denied the Human Rights Ministry, which is responsible for a file on Ashraf camp, "has an intention [as part] of the Iraqi government to return them forcibly to their country of Iran, if they are unwilling. [The Ministry is] taking into account their transfer to a place where all available medical and social conditions of humanity exist, while ensuring their safe transportation and to not expose them to lack of these where they are. "
In the same vein, Salim revealed, "the government approached the European countries to host them on their territory as refugees."
Iraqi forces entered Camp Ashraf on the 15 December, where the members of the Iranian MKO live, to inform them of government’s intention to transfer them to another camp in Baghdad in the coming days, and inviting elements of the Organization who wish to leave the camp to approach the Iraqi security forces stationed around the camp to take action on their behalf.