“The Mujahadeen in Iraq celebrated the September 11th attacks”
Washington DC, October 25, 2005 – On the brink of the trial of former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, Karim Haggi Moni, chairman of the Iran Peyvand Association, introducing himself as a former member and now dissident of the Mojahedeen Khalq Organization (MKO), asserted that “we now face another form of fundamentalist ideology that has committed 100’s of terrorist acts” with the financial and political support of the former Iraqi president.
Through both his personal testimony and a ten minute video displayed during the press conference at the National Press Club earlier on Monday, Moni sought to highlight the MKO’s cooperation with Saddam Hussein and demanded that Massoud Rajavi, the leader of the MKO and his associates be tried for “their human rights violations.”
Citing his personal encounters with the MKO, Moni referenced “the system of propaganda” that Rajavi and the MKO use to mask their “terroristic ways.”
The video, which catalyzed a heated exchange between Moni and some members of the audience, included interviews with witnesses and experts on the MKO’s connection with the former Iraqi regime and outlined the MKO’s role in halting the Kurdish advance in Iraq in 1995 and the violent suppression of internal uprisings during the 1991 Persian Gulf War.
Referencing the video, Moni claimed that “Saddam placed more trust in the MKO than his Iraqi army” during his campaigns against Iraqi Shiites and Kurds.
Citing the “hypocrisy of the US administration”, Moni also criticized Bush administration officials for attempting to take the MKO off of the State Department’s list of international terrorist organizations despite their alleged connections with the former Iraqi regime.
“The Mujahadeen in Iraq celebrated the September 11th attacks,” Moni said, arguing that there is an attempt “to cover the Mujahadeen’s past activities.”
In an event that can only be described as chaotic, several audience members questioned the legitimacy of Moni’s sources and assertions as they interrupted and barraged him repeatedly with an array of accusations.
The heated exchange was interrupted by a brief respite that later led to the premature conclusion of the press conference
By Karim Haggi Moni , The National Iranian American Council