The four-and-a-half-year-long process of relocating members of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI or MEK) to countries of safety was successfully completed on September 9, 2016 when the last 280 Camp Liberty residents left Iraq for Albania.
The achievement is not without cost, however. The residents left Iraq dispossessed of both personal and collective property, and have had to met the costs of resettlement themselves.
Related on BackChannels: “On Human Rights Day, Iran is Again Covered in Blood” – Maryam Rajavi.” 1/18/2015.
The Secretary of State has decided, consistent with the law, to revoke the designation of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) and its aliases as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under the Immigration and Nationality Act and to delist the MEK as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under Executive Order 13224. These actions are effective today. Property and interests in property in the United States or within the possession or control of U.S. persons will no longer be blocked, and U.S. entities may engage in transactions with the MEK without obtaining a license. These actions will be published in the Federal Register.
With today’s actions, the Department does not overlook or forget the MEK’s past acts of terrorism, including its involvement in the killing of U.S. citizens in Iran in the 1970s and an attack on U.S. soil in 1992. The Department also has serious concerns about the MEK as an organization, particularly with regard to allegations of abuse committed against its own members.
The Secretary’s decision today took into account the MEK’s public renunciation of violence, the absence of confirmed acts of terrorism by the MEK for more than a decade, and their cooperation in the peaceful closure of Camp Ashraf, their historic paramilitary base.
The United States has consistently maintained a humanitarian interest in seeking the safe, secure, and humane resolution of the situation at Camp Ashraf, as well as in supporting the United Nations-led efforts to relocate eligible former Ashraf residents outside of Iraq.
Several thousand members of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, PMOI or MEK, a group of intellectuals dedicated to democracy, the rule of law and tolerance to people of others religions, have been facing repeated missile strikes and army assaults in Iraq by Tehran’s proxies. The PMOI are the ayatollahs’ most feared opponents, as their democratic interpretation of Islam poses a direct challenge to the mullahs’ claim to power through religious rule.
Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is eager to massacre 2,000 defenceless refugees in Camp Liberty, where they live close to Baghdad. The last rocket attack on the group was on October 28, 2015, when 24 residents were killed and many more wounded. The United Nations refugee agency has recognized all Camp Liberty residents as asylum-seekers and refugees under international protection but seems unable to provide them with adequate security or protection from attack.
http://www.voanews.com/a/us-albania/3190311.html – 2/14/2016
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/massoud-khodabandeh/can-albania-meet-its-obli_b_9355764.html – 3/1/2016 – Given the MEK’s renunciation of violence, their track record across ten years at Camp Ashraf, and the American government’s delisting in 2012 (there as was no mention of that in Massoud Khodabandeh’s article), BackChannels posts the related URL but with reservations.