The United States has announced that members of the Iranian exile group People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran must leave Camp Ashraf in Iraq, where they have been settled for the past three decades.
The U.S. State Department has announced that compliance by the dissident Iranian group will be key in having its name removed from the U.S. list of terrorist groups, AFP reports.
According to an agreement reached between the United Nations and the Iraqi government, the nearly 3,000 members of Camp Ashraf are to be relocated to another place in Iraq, referred to as Liberty Camp.
While two-thirds of Camp Ashraf residents have already been moved since May 5, the process has been halted as the leaders of the group express concern that residents are not being granted asylum by other countries and are merely being held at another camp.
The People’s Mojahedin settled in Camp Ashraf in the 1980s during the Iran-Iraq War as it fought against the Islamic Republic.
After the invasion of Iraq by U.S. forces, the camp was disarmed and fell under U.S. jurisdiction. With the withdrawal of U.S. forces, the Iraqi government has called for the removal of the Iranian dissident group from its territories.
The group has been on the U.S. blacklist since 1997 but it claims that it has given up its militant approach and should be removed from the terrorist list.