Euro MPs Welcome Appointment of EU Special Envoy for Camp Ashraf

Stop Fundamentalism - A cross political party intergroup in the European Parliament discussed the latest developments concerning Camp Ashraf, where members of the Iranian opposition People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK/PMOI) reside, in a meeting at the EP site in Strasbourg on Wednesday, September 28.

Participants that included some 40 Euro MPs and their assistants from different political groups expressed grave concern against threats posing the defenseless residents of the camp. They described the deadline to close the camp by the year's end "impossible" and urged the UN Secretary General and UNHCR to adopt strong measures to protect the unarmed and defenseless residents of Ashraf.

MEPs stressed that installations of two new telecommunication towers and jamming and surveillance equipment along-side the current 300 powerful loudspeakers continuously torturing the residents of Ashraf are matters of serious concern that must be addressed immediately. "This clearly demonstrates that the Iraqi government and their Iranian sponsors are preparing the grounds for another violent assault," said the statement issued by the EP intergroup Friends of a Free Iran (FoFI) Thursday.

The meeting took place following the appointment of a special envoy by Baroness Ashton, EU High Representative, to Ashraf. Appointment of Ambassador Jean De Ruyt to this post announced on Monday was widely welcomed by MEPs.

Prior to this development, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) declared the 3400 residents of Ashraf as "asylum seekers" that rendered international protection to them.

In their statement the MEPs demanded the removal of the Iraqi government's deadline to close Ashraf and called upon the UN Secretary General and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to station UN observers in Ashraf to avert another massacre of the residents. They also urged the newly appointed EU envoy to visit Camp Ashraf as a first priority of his mandate.

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