TEHRAN, June 18 (MNA) – Iraq is seeking to expel the Mujahedeen Khalq Organization, the largest armed Iranian dissident group for interfering in Iraq’s domestic affairs and inciting terror acts against the Iraqi nation.
“Baghdad regards the MKO as Saddam’s accomplice” and is opposed to its presence in Iraq, an informed official who requested anonymity told the ISNA news agency.
The MKO was set up in the mid-1960s to oppose the U.S.-backed dictatorship of the late Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. It participated in the country’s revolution but soon launched a campaign of assassinations and bombings in Iran.
The group, supported by Saddam Hussein’s regime, moved to Iraq in the early 1980s where it fought Iran’s new ruling system until the U.S.-led invasion against Iraq in 2003.
“The Iranian government has repeatedly called on Iraq to prevent the activities of Iranian dissident groups and the MKO is among them,” said the official.
“The MKO has also got tired of the so-called U.S. supports and is seeking to leave Iraq… its case is now being pursued by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees,” he added.
The Iraqi administration on Tuesday issued a statement designating the MKO as a terrorist organization and calling on the U.S. to stop supporting the militant group, London-based al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper quoted government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh as saying.
“The cabinet decided to ban any dealings with this organization by any Iraqi or foreign individual, organization or party,” the statement said on Tuesday.
It also warned that those who violate the order will face charges under the anti-terror law.
Baghdad is determined to fully monitor the MKO’s activities until its full expulsion from the country, al-Dabbagh added.
Mehr News, June 18, 2008