London, 22 May – Members of the main Iranian opposition group People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI or MEK) in Camp Liberty, Iraq, faced another crisis last week when Iraqi merchants were prevented by the government authorities from purchasing the residents’ properties.
Seven Iraqi merchants arrived at the camp on 19 May but were turned back after the Governmental Committee which “supresses” Camp Liberty residents insulted them, according to the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI).
The residents were informed in mid-May that the Iraqi government approved the sale of their property, which would fund their relocation to safe countries.
All the residents needed was the names of the purchasers; they have since supplied five lists of merchants to the Government of Iraq, the United States Embassy and the United Nations Assistant Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).
Every merchant has been denied entry to the camp.
The Foreign Affairs Committee of the US Congress stated last week that the US Government needed to work with the Government of Iraq to ensure the ability of residents to sell their property so they could resettle out of Iraq.
According to the NCRI, Iran’s Minister of Intelligence, Mahmoud Alavi, told Faleh Fayyad, Iraq’s National Security Advisor, that Iran was opposed to the deal; it was a show gesture in front of the United Nations (UN).
Alavi told Fayyad to only allow a tiny amount of sales, which wouldn’t generate significant income for the PMOI (MEK).
This arrangement not only restricts the sales, thereby trapping the residents; it also paves the way for systematic looting and pillaging of the properties.
The NCRI has urged the US Government, the European Union, and the UN to remove these restrictions so that Camp Liberty residents can aid their own relocation.