A senior Iraqi provincial official underlined the terrorist nature of the Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO), reminding that the terrorist group had played an active role in sparking insecurities and suppressing the people in Iraq’s Diyala province.
"MKO has played a remarkable role in creating insecurity and political disruption in Diyala province, and it had massive collaboration with former Iraqi regime to suppress the people," Uday Adnan al-Khudri, the Governor of the town of Khalis in Diyala province, north of Baghdad, said.
According to the website of the Habilian Association, an Iran-based human rights group, the Iraqi official said that a group of local authorities and tribal sheikhs have recently visited Camp Ashraf – now called as the Camp of New Iraq – to prepare the ground for a meeting between MKO members and their families but the delegation’s efforts yielded no result due to the strong opposition shown by the terrorist group’s commanders.
Khudri said that the group rejected the Iraqi side’s request for mediations for three times, saying that the group opposed the meeting in an effort to prevent defection and voluntarily return of its members to Iran.
The authority of the MKO camp was transferred to Iraq after a security pact was signed between Iraq and the US. In April, Iraq’s De-Baathification Campaign announced that the MKO was behind the recent terrorist attack in the town of Khalis, north of Baghdad.
Explosions that ripped through a cafe and a restaurant in the Diyala province town of Khalis in March killed 43 people and wounded at least 65 others. The blasts occurred hours before the government released the results of the country’s March 7 parliamentary elections. The MKO has been in Iraq’s Diyala province since the 1980s.
Citizens of the city of Al-Khalis in Diyala province in March called on the future Iraqi government to expel MKO members from the country as soon as possible. The people of Al-Khalis urged the next government to expel the members of terrorist MKO group, stationed in the Camp of New Iraq in Diyala province. The group is responsible for numerous acts of violence against Iranian civilians and government officials as well as Iraqis during the rein of Saddam.
The group started assassination of the citizens and officials after the Islamic Revolution in Iran in a bid to take control of the newly established Islamic Republic. It killed several of Iran’s new leaders in the early years after the revolution, including the then President, Mohammad Ali Rajayee, Prime Minister, Mohammad Javad Bahonar and the Judiciary Chief, Mohammad Hossein Beheshti who were killed in bomb attacks by MKO members in 1981.
The group fled to Iraq in 1986, where it was protected by Saddam Hussein and where it helped the Iraqi dictator suppress Shiite and Kurd uprisings in the country.
The terrorist group joined Saddam’s army during the Iraqi imposed war on Iran (1980-1988) and helped Saddam and killed thousands of Iranian civilians and soldiers during the US-backed Iraqi imposed war on Iran. Since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, the group has been strongly backed by neo-conservatives in the United States, who also argue for the MKO to be taken off the US terror list.