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Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 8

++ The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Martin Kobler and the country representative for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Claire Bourgeois strongly condemned an attack on Camp Liberty, an Iranian exile camp in Iraq on June 15, and called on the Government to assist and protect camp residents in need. “Today’s second terror attack on Camp Liberty is a reminder to third countries to come forward with serious offers to resettle Camp Liberty residents outside Iraq,” Mr. Kobler said. “Third countries must step forward and open their doors to relocation.”

++ In a statement, Wathiq al-Battat, a top member of Iraq’s Hezbollah movement, claimed the group was behind the mortar attack on Camp Liberty. It was the second attack on the remaining members of the terrorist MEK in Iraq since February. The previous one took place on February 9, which resulted in a number of deaths and injuries. Al-Battat took responsibility for that attack as well, and warned of further attacks until they leave Iraq. The MEK have used the attacks to bolster their demand to be returned to Camp Ashraf for security reasons.

++ Several people wrote open letters to Martin Kobler, Ban Ki Moon, and the Government of Iraq asking them to urgently help the people in Camp Liberty and bring them out as soon as possible. Letters were also sent to the Head of the French Senate and other lawmakers in France complaining why their government has allowed a group like the MEK to publicly celebrate armed struggle and terrorism in Paris on 22 June.

++ In an article for Reuters following the Iranian election, Susan Cornwell says that for decades the MEK has been on the wrong side of history, and has “no discernible role in politics at home”. In spite of this the MEK is now formalizing its campaign to pressure the Obama administration to maintain a hard line with the Islamic Republic. “They’ll deny it, but I think it’s pretty simple: their goal is to keep pushing the politics in America to lead to an invasion, some kind of major unsettlement of Iran, that they can sweep into as a new government,” said Jeremiah Goulka, author of the 2009 RAND study. The report depicted the MEK as a cult-like movement run with military-style discipline, gender separation and “near-religious devotion” to its Paris-based leaders – a description the MEK denies.

++ Writing in Farsi on the issue of the election many observers have come to the conclusion that whichever way we look at it, the people of Iran have shown that they do not want violence or revolution.

++ News emerged about the MEK’s use of Facebook as part of its efforts to use any means to disrupt the election process. The group created thousands of Facebook pages to try and impose a voter boycott. This obviously failed. A lot of articles and blogs talk about the backlash that the high voter turnout has created for the MEK. Many have pointed out that Massoud Rajavi wrote to Khamenei and Rafsanjani in the hope there would be divisions inside Iran, but this has not worked. More than that, he faces collapse since Rohani was the worst possible winner for the MEK.

++ Mohammad Hussein Sobhani and Mehdi Sajoudi were guests of Mardom TV this week. They talked about many issues including Abu Ghraib prison where Rajavi had Sobhani and others imprisoned, along with more recent issues such as the arrival of 44 people in Albania and the MEK’s desperate need to put on a public show on 22 June in Paris to save face.

++Iran Didban published an article about the election analysing the situation of Massoud Rajavi before and after; how he has lost his opportunity to try to sell himself as mercenary in case of war – now there is no prospect of war. It reminds everyone that from the start until now, Rajavi has tried to portray himself as a lumpen character who can swear and knife and kill etc. But, after writing to Rafsanjani, he is now desperate to say there is no president except Maryam Rajavi.

++ The result of a spoof parallel internet election staged by a Russian chess champion, with alternative candidates from outside Iran, was published. In spite of all their efforts, the share of votes for Maryam Rajavi was less than 1%. The Reformists came out on top with the most votes.

++ Habilian Association has exposed pictures that the MEK had published described as anti-Iran demonstrations in the streets of major Iranian cities, but says, when we look closely we can see the pictures are of people celebrating Iran’s qualification to the 2014 World Cup. Habilian points out this is not the first time such activity has been exposed as the MEK regularly photoshop pictures to create a false image.

++ Many people have written articles exposing the real identities of individuals that Rajavi sent to Albania from Camp Liberty. The real name of ‘[Brother] Javad Khorrasam’ is Ismael Mortezai. His picture and details are exposed in several sites as a top ranking MEK loyalist for thirty years. During the Saddam era he worked with Iraq’s Mokhabarat specifically in Basra, and was involved in all kinds of intelligence and terrorism in Iran and Iraq. After 2003 he was introduced to the US forces as the MEK intelligence contact. He attended meetings with Americans in Camp Ashraf as the Intel consultant for the nominal head of the camp (Mojghan Parsi and later Sedigheh Hosseini).

++ Iran Ghalam reported this week that Massoud Rajavi is threatening the residents of Camp Liberty warning them not to think about Albania. This open message to all the residents shows that there is so much talk about leaving Iraq that he has been forced to react and try to contain it.

++ Mohammad Karami revealed the latest ‘walkouts’ from Camp Liberty. He says 18 individuals found the opportunity when a UNAMI delegation was inside the camp to jump out in front of their vehicles and force them to take them out. One escapee is a famous translator of the MEK.

++ According to news from inside the MEK, Massoud Rajavi tried to prevent the next group from leaving for Albania. He threatened the ICRC, UNAMI and etc. But today (June 21) the third series – comprising 12 men and 2 women – arrived in Tirana. Although the MEK also tried to prevent their names being made public, most of the people coming out have been named on several sites.

++ In an article for Pejvak Iran, Ashraf Alikhani complains about the MEK’s use of vulgar and nasty language in the internet and other media. She says at first she believed this must be being done by former members writing as the MEK to discredit the group. But her article, titled ‘The MEK I knew in Evin prison’, concludes that this is not the enemies of the MEK destroying them, they are doing it themselves.

++ The MEK’s swearing at and vilification of former NCRI members Ghassem and Rowhani continued all week following their resignations and raising questions. But some former MEK members have pointed out that these two deliberately closed their eyes to obvious human rights abuses in the camp in Iraq whenever they were invited there. While congratulating Ghassem for having left the NCRI, Adel Azami writing on Facebook, reminds him of the time he came to camp when Adel was there but refused listen to him.

++ Atefeh Eghbal writing on Facebook refers specifically to Shirin Narriman in the US, criticising her writing nasty things about people who raise questions. Eghbal reminds Narriman that they were in prison together many years ago. She goes on to wonder how a good human can, little by little, collapse to such an extent that they are prepared to write such nasty things and become like a toy in the hands of the MEK.

++ Iran Didban has ridiculed Rajavi for describing the two former NCRI members as infiltrators from Iran, pointing out that everyone is aware they were with Rajavi and the NCRI for thirty years, making this claim impossible. The article says Rajavi has come to the point all dictators reach: they can’t trust anyone, not even those closest to them.

++ In his weblog titled ’32 years after 21 June 1981′, Mohammad B. describes how the MEK changed between then and now (their move to Iraq, etc) but, he says, the MEK is still trying to mix armed struggle with John Bolton, the far left with the far right, and points out that they can’t take a consistent or rational position.

++ Former members of the MEK held a book sale and picket on 19 June in Cologne to draw attention to the situation of Camp Liberty, and Rajavi’s unchallenged hold on the 3000+ hostages there. They also protested the free hand given to Paris based Maryam Rajavi to promote her terrorist agenda in Europe.

June 21, 2013

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