Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 156

++ Most of the families have left Iraq to return home. But a small number have remained in Baghdad. In spite of positive meetings with Iraqi parliamentarians and humanitarian organs, the families say nothing has changed since the time of Saddam as far as the MEK is concerned and they still cannot see their loved ones. They say the UN is not even doing the bare minimum to help. Instead, the UN has its own agenda, which is certainly not to provide humanitarian help to Camp Liberty residents or their families. In the meantime, the transfers to Albania have been accelerated. Clearly there is an agreement with the MEK to empty the camp as soon as possible (contrary to previous MEK behaviour), while the heads are running away using false passports. Those escaping are mostly those wanted by Interpol. But these ex-Saddamists have now surfaced in various European countries, particularly Germany and France. Information and photographs exposing this scandal has been posted on the internet. Analysts also say this is consistent with increased Saudi support for the MEK.

++ Negotiations between Iran and Albania over the extradition of criminals from both countries has been given the go ahead by both parliaments and will start soon.

++ Abbas Zaki, a high-ranking member of the Palestinian Fatah organisation, had an interview with Al Alam in which he gave an explanation of the meeting between Mahmoud Abbas and Maryam Rajavi. He first watered down its significance by saying that Abbas had already been in Paris for other meetings anyway. He then explained ‘Abbas operates in the weak space we Palestinians have. We have friends like Iran with whom we have good relations. And then we have others who have a different agenda and with whom we have to shut up and put up! This meeting was not according to our own will or interests and the point is that we had no other choice.’

++ The main question inside the MEK has now progressed from ‘where is Massoud Rajavi’ to ‘where is Massoud Rajavi, dead or alive?’ As time passes and both the Saudis and the MEK remain mum, the situation among the membership gets worse. This has now spread to the remaining members of the NCRI. Now that it has become open that the MEK were being paid by Saudi Arabia from the time of Saddam the NCRI now know that the MEK is a mercenary force. Some have said that because they have wives and families they “cannot stand the shame, especially because you [Rajavi] get the money and we do the work”.

++ The MEK have gone completely Saudi. Last week Iran executed several terrorists who called themselves ‘Towhid and Jihad’ (Unity and Jihad), and who were clearly paid by the Saudis. But Rajavi issued her condolences and claimed that Iran had executed them because they were Sunnis – even though their targets were fellow Sunnis in Iran. Rajavi’s representative in Al Arabiya claimed the executed terrorists belonged to the MEK. Iran was happy to repeat this claim and described them all as mercenaries.

In English:

++ Nejat Society: families of Camp Liberty residents met with Iraqi parliamentarians. At the same time the UN has accelerated transfers to Albania without allowing any opportunity for enabling families to contact their loved ones. Mohammad Razaghi warned that senior MEK members, wanted by Interpol, are being smuggled into Europe on false passports. The photographs and true identities of these people are now posted on the internet.

++ Articles for Al Monitor and Press TV analyse and criticise the meeting between Fatah’s Mahmoud Abbas and Maryam Rajavi in Paris.

++ Habilian Association reports that “a high ranking official of Iraq’s Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) party harshly criticized Saudi Arabia over Turki Al- Faisal’s participation in anti-Iran Mujahedin e-Khalq organization’s Paris gathering on July 9… The Kurdish Iraqi official added: ‘MKO is an armed terrorist group comprised of a number of Iranian dissidents that has a black record of conducting crimes against Iraqi nation and the Kurdish people.’ He also added: ‘I demand Saudi officials to formally apologize Iraqi people and stop supporting the terrorist group. We acknowledge no difference between the ISIS and the MKO; They are two sides of the same coin and there is no excuse for supporting them’.”

++ Mazda Parsi, writing for Nejat Society, says that dialogue with the MEK is a destructive policy. He cites the signatures of 25 British MPs for the MEK and says that Maryam Rajavi’s so-called ‘Third Option’ claims to advocate the controversial ‘democratic regime change in Iran’. “As a matter of fact” says Parsi, “regime change rarely leads to democratization. Democracy is not a phenomenon that can be imposed through regime change. Moreover, imposing democracy by force is almost impossible.” Parsi warns that the MEK cannot even provide the basic tools necessary to bring about democracy because it is a totalitarian cult.

 12 August 2016

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