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UN must act to protect Camp Liberty and free Ashraf 7, Iraqi MPs demand

The politicians made the call in a strongly-worded letter this week to the United Nations Secretary-General, the High Commissioner for Refugees, and the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Camp Liberty in Iraq houses members Iranian opposition, the people’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) in Iraq.

The MPs said: “3,000 Iranian refugees, members of the Iranian opposition at the heavily besieged Camp Liberty near Baghdad airport, are in very dangerous situation.

“They lack the minimum security guarantees, are continually exposed to bloody missile attacks, most recently last December 26, which led to 4 dead and 70 wounded.

“Meanwhile the bodies of 52 refugees, who were brutally massacred last September 1 during a bloody attack of security forces, have not been returned to their families for burial and no information is available on the fate of seven of them who were taken hostage.

“Currently Camp Liberty is under a severely inhumane and illegal siege and its residents not only lack freedom of movement or even seeing their lawyers, they are deprived from free access to necessary medical care, and so far 16 of them have died due to deprivation from such services.

“While defenseless and unarmed residents of the Camp face missile attacks and obvious security threats every day and every hour, it is unacceptable that they lack the basic security guarantees, and the prospect of further bloody crimes is in horizon.”

Meanwhile, Liberty residents are officially considered ‘protected persons’ under the Fourth Geneva Convention and have been declared asylum seekers by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the letter written by Dr Zafer al-Ani, official spokesman for the Mottahedoun list, said.

It added: “We insist on your immediate intervention to secure the release of seven hostages and the most basic and most urgent needs and supplies necessary for the protection of the camp.

“We believe that after all the experiences and bloody inhumane siege in recent years, resulting in over 130 refugees dead and over 1,700 wounded, the deployment of United Nations blue-helmeted observers in Liberty and declaring group refugee status for all residents by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, is the most immediate action that should be undertaken.

“Otherwise, the United Nations and the US government will have clear and undeniable responsibility for the protection of these refugees against future attacks that are undoubtedly being prepared by the terrorist Qods Force and its agents in Iraq.”

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