Habilian Association – an NGO formed of the families of 17,000 victims of terrorism in Iran – in a letter to the European Parliament, protested against the presence of the terrorist Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO, also known as MEK, NCRI or PMOI) leader Maryam Rajavi in a session of the EP committee sessions.
“Maryam Rajavi is a terrorist and there is no place for terrorists in the parliament,” the letter said, and added, “Some EP members who have close cooperation with MKO should rather spend their energy on transferring Camp Liberty residents to a third country and in this way prevent the MKO leaders from victimizing these people.”
The letter reminded the European Parliament that the MKO has killed thousands of Iranian and Iraqi citizens as well as seven Americans.
Many of the MKO members have abandoned the terrorist organization while most of those still remaining in the grouplet are said to be willing to quit but are under pressure and torture not to do so.
A recent Human Rights Watch report accused the MKO of running prison camps in Iraq and committing human rights violations.
According to the Human Rights Watch report, the outlawed group puts defectors under torture and jail terms.
The group, founded in the 1960s, blended elements of Islamism and Stalinism and participated in the overthrow of the US-backed Shah of Iran in 1979. Ahead of the revolution, the MKO conducted attacks and assassinations against both Iranian and Western targets.
The group started assassination of the citizens and officials after the revolution 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, which now adheres to a pro-free-market philosophy, has been strongly backed by neo-conservatives in the United States, who eventually took the MKO off the US terror list.
The US formally removed the MKO from its list of terror organizations in early September 2012, one week after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sent the US Congress a classified communication about the move. The decision made by Clinton enabled the group to have its assets under US jurisdiction unfrozen and do business with American entities, the State Department said in a statement at the time.
In September 2012, the last groups of the MKO terrorists left Camp Ashraf, their main training center in Iraq’s Diyala province. They have been transferred to Camp Liberty which lies Northeast of the Baghdad International Airport.
Camp Liberty is a transient settlement facility and a last station for the MKO in Iraq.