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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
09BAGHDAD1971 2009-07-21 12:39:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Baghdad
Cable title:  

MEK: GOI AND ASHRAF LEADERS STILL NOT SEEKING

Tags:   PHUM PREL PTER PINR IR IZ 
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VZCZCXRO2387
OO RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHDH RUEHIHL RUEHKUK
DE RUEHGB #1971/01 2021239
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 211239Z JUL 09
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4018
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0312
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0830
					  C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BAGHDAD 001971 

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/20/2019
TAGS: PHUM PREL PTER PINR IR IZ
SUBJECT: MEK: GOI AND ASHRAF LEADERS STILL NOT SEEKING
COMMON GROUND

REF: BAGHDAD 1947 AND PREVIOUS

Classified By: A/PMA W.S. Reid III for reasons 1.4(b) & (d).



1. (C) Summary. Camp Ashraf residents continue to
stubbornly refuse to consider GOI Ashraf proposals. When
presented with the message (reftel) from the GOI in a
face-to-face meeting on July 19, Madame Mojgan Parsaie,
leader of Camp Ashraf, reiterated the non-negotiable nature
of placement of an Iraqi police station (IP station) on Camp
Ashraf and the subsequent relocation of camp residents.
Although Madame Parsaie attempted to again plead the case of
Camp Ashraf residents to USG officials, citing international
humanitarian rights, U.S. officials stressed that U.S. forces
continue to maintain an oversight role over Camp Ashraf, not
a security role, advising that now is the time for residents
to work diligently in negotiating directly with the GOI to
arrive at a mutually-agreeable solution. During a subsequent
USG meeting with GOI Ashraf Committee Chairman, Ali Abdul
Amir al-Yassery, the GOI reiterated their decision to move
forward with their plans for a police station and deployment
of a new site commander while assuring U.S. officials that
they intended to conduct their plans in an humane manner.
End Summary.

MEK Reaction to GOI Plan: Incomprehensible and Non-Negotiable


2. (C) On July 19, acting Commander TF-134 and acting
Pol-Mil Couns met face-to-face with Camp Ashraf residents to
again inform the residents that a new site commander, COL
Sadi, soon would be deployed to the camp. They also advised
that plans were ongoing by the GOI to locate an IP station on
Camp Ashraf and to subsequently relocate residents to another
location in Iraq. This pronouncement was met with a
re-declaration of their previous assertions ) placement of
an IP station and relocation of residents are both
non-negotiable.


3. (C) Regarding the new site commander, Madame Parsaie
appeared to accept this news, claiming the residents would
welcome a new commander. However, she stressed that their
original position had not been altered by this news )
residents found the introduction of an IP station to be
&incomprehensible,8 asserting that Camp Ashraf residents
are not legal residents of Iraq and do not have weapons,
thereby negating the need for IP in her mind. She stated the
matter would not be solved by a new commander and requested
that the matter be tabled until after the Iraqi elections in
January 2010. (Comment. Madame Parsaie appears to believe
that, should the PM not be re-elected, a new government may
view the Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK) in a more favorable light,
softening their hard-line stance on relocation. This appears
to be wishful thinking on her part. End Comment.)


4. (C) USG officials reiterated the Iraqi proposal to
relocate the residents to Camp Echo, available after
November, and offered to bring a delegation of camp residents
to the new location for a tour of the new facility. Acting
Commander TF-134 offered that residents could also make any
suggestions for alterations that would be required by them
for occupancy. Madame Parsaie stated that would be
unnecessary as residents would "only relocate to Iran or die
in Camp Ashraf."
Conditions for Leaving Iraq


5. (C) Although Madame Parsaie rejected outright relocation
to another location in Iraq, she suggested that Camp Ashraf
residents might be willing to relocate to the United States,
referring to a recent news article about Palestinian
refugees. (Comment. It should be noted that there appears to
Qrefugees. (Comment. It should be noted that there appears to
be one thing that both Madame Parsaie and al-Yassery agree
upon ) the desirability of relocation of the MEK to the
United States. End Comment.) She also revealed that Camp
Ashraf residents would be willing to be repatriated to Iran
provided that the Government of Iran guarantees them in an
official signed document to the USG, ICRC and UNHCR peaceful
repatriation and existence in Iran. She stated the letter
should provide assurances against torture, execution and
imprisonment and guarantee residents freedom of speech, along
with other freedoms not revealed, upon return to Iran.
Madame Parsaie clarified that she was not seeking an amnesty
or pardon letter from the Iranian government. "The Mullahs
owe an apology to the people of Iran,8 she asserted. She
also reiterated that the Iranian government would meet its
demise within a year.


6. (C) USG officials ended the meeting reiterating that in
the future USG officials will only visit when accompanying
GOI officials and U.S. forces will continue to serve in an
oversight capacity only, they said.
GOI Reaction to MEK Intransigence


7. (C) On July 20, USG officials met with al-Yassery to
discuss recent communications between the USG and residents
of Camp Ashraf, assuring al-Yassery that the residents were
informed about GOI plans and were further advised that the

BAGHDAD 00001971 002 OF 002


USG would continue to serve in an oversight only role and
that negotiation must now be conducted solely with the GOI.


8. (C) Al-Yassery proposed a joint visit to the camp on July
26 to introduce COL Sadi to the residents, stating that
following the joint GOI-U.S. meeting COL Sadi would serve as
the point of contact for the residents. He also expressed
concern that residents would set up a blockade of the main
gate prior to GOI officials, arrival. Acting Commander
TF-134 informed al-Yassery that residents were advised that
the GOI would be dealing with residents in a civilized and
humane manner and it is in their best interests to act in the
same manner. Al-Yassery affirmed this intention, but
appeared anxious to begin the process.


9. (C) After being informed U.S. forces could not vacate
Camp Echo any sooner than November, al-Yassery insisted that
even if everything on the camp is not up to standard for a
transfer, the GOI would accommodate any deficiencies in order
to get the move to happen sooner. USG and GOI officials
agreed to travel to Camp Ashraf on July 26 for a meeting with
camp residents.


10. (C) Comment. Camp residents continue to deny the
reality of their situation ) the GOI is going to place an IP
station on Camp Ashraf and they are ultimately going to be
relocated. Their hard-line resistance to an IP station and
relocation, while continuing to rely on USG security, is
setting them up for a rude awakening when the GOI decides to
put their plan into action. Residents continue to
underestimate the GOI,s determination to settle the MEK
situation, which continues to challenge the GOI's sense of
authority and sovereignty. Madame Parsaie,s continued
belief that new Iraqi elections will be favorable to the MEK
is wishful thinking and an effort to buy time. USG officials
will continue to serve in a monitoring role, and, if
necessary, remind GOI officials of their obligations to deal
with Camp Ashraf residents in a manner consistent with the
assurances the GOI has provided to the USG to treat
individual residents humanely and in accordance with Iraq,s
constitution, laws, and international obligations. End
Comment.
FORD