The differences between Iraqi officials and the armed Iranian opposition group, Mojahedin-e Khalq, based mainly in Iraq, have heightened and many Iraqi officials are asking for its expulsion.
Some 4000 Iranians, mostly women, are now living in Camp Ashraf in Al-Azim region in Dyalah Province.
Fazel Al-Shovaili, adviser of Iraq’s Deputy Interior Minister for Security Affairs Shirvan Vaeli, said: "MKO is a terrorist group with long history of killing Iraqis and enjoying privileges from Saddam government."
During a conference called "Iraq Without Terrorist Organization, sponsored by Iraq’s National Security Ministry in Baghdad, he added: "the presence of this organization is a tragic consequence left from former regime. It has had much impact on neighboring countries."
Dr. Aziz Jabr Shial, professor of Political Sciences in Baghdad University, also said: "The MKO should leave our country because its presence here has a negative message for Iranian officials and it may be interpreted that Iraqi is not firm in establishing goodwill ties with neighbors. It also gives the green light to Iran’s interferences in Iraq. Allowing this organization to act in Iraq was a wrong policy by the former regime."
He also suggested that Iraq and Iran cooperate to guarantee the safety of MKO members and return them to their country.
Dr. Abdulamir Al-Asadi, researcher at the center of Dialog, said in the conference: "The most threatening issue in criminal acts is that they are acting covertly and it’s not easy to get to their ideas. I ask the security ministry of Iraq to form an independent committee to fight terrorism and make serious decision on stopping terrorism in Iraq."
Hussein Al-Sadr, a Shiite cleric, said: "It’s right to try to expel the MKO from Iraq and we should do so because these people had criminal roles in the former regime. They took part in suppressing the uprising of Iraqis in the south in 1991. the people who make alliance with terrorist groups show how bankrupt they’re politically and internationally."
Ittihad newspaper/UAE, February 18, 2007