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Iraqi Maysan residents reject presence of MKO

Text of report by Qatari government-funded, pan-Arab news channel Al-Jazeera satellite TV on 15 December 

[Ali Khalaf video report]

The Iraqi city of Al-Samawah has refused to host members of the Mojahedin-e Khalq group, staging protests to state this refusal. Today, the group was transferred to the area of Al-Mansuriyah al-Jabal, which is adjacent to Baghdad. Al-Arabiya correspondent Ali Khalaf has more details.

[Begin recording] [Khalaf] The Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization [MKO] is a knot that the former Iraqi president tied and that the current government has become confused about untying. The former regime supported the organization in response to Iran’s embracing the Iraqi Badr Organization, which was opposed to the former regime. Maysan’s people accuse the organization of carrying out operations they describe as criminal acts against them for the sake of Saddam Husayn during the uprising that followed the war to liberate Kuwait. On this basis, the governorate council was angered when some websites said that some government authorities intend to transfer this organization to their city.

[Unidentified Iraqi man] It [the MKO] repressed worshippers and killed Al-Amarah’s people and notables. Saddam Husyan killed them through this desperate organization.

[Unidentified Iraqi woman] No, we do not want them.

[Another unidentified Iraqi man] Iraq is a secure, respectable, and wealthy country. We do not want these people.

[A third unidentified man] We host them on humanitarian grounds, no more no less, and in accordance with a strategy to be designed by the governorate and the chairman of the governorate council.

[A fourth unidentified Iraqi man] It [the MKO] committed terrorist acts; it quelled the uprising in a very terrifying and extreme manner.

[Khalaf] The chairman of the governorate council has urged the central government to expel this organization from all Iraq governorates and said that the world has labelled it as terrorist. He added that he has documents proving that this organization committed criminal acts against the residents of the Misan Governorate.

[Abd-al-Husayn Abd-al-Ridha al-Sa’idi, chairman of Maysan Governorate Council, addressing a news conference] There are documents proving that, over the past years, this organization and its affiliates were involved in criminal acts and in killing large numbers of Iraqi people in a flagrant manner.

[Khalaf] The Governorate Council of Maysan has flatly refused to host the Mojahedin-e Khalq for fear that the city might become a place for settling scores between the members of this organization and Iran-backed militias. [end recording; video shows the above speaking to Al-Arabiya]

Aljazeera TV (Arabic) – Transcript by BBC Monitoring Middle East

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