November 17, 2017

Kobler gives carte blanche for another criminal attack in Ashraf

Kobler must face justice for his criminal activities against 3200 Iranian refugees

The issue of refugees and asylum seekers in Ashraf and Liberty are completely under the mandate of the UNHCR

In a letter to Iranian Resistance President-elect Mrs Maryam Rajavi, Martin Kobler has told more lies and exposed Ashraf to the threat of yet another criminal attack.

He wrote: “The government decided now to proceed with the legal procedures to close Camp Ashraf.  please note that we do not in any way associate ourselves with the procedures of the government of Iraq.”!

This is a green light and a carte blanche for a fourth deadly attack on the 3,200 Iranian refugees in Iraq.  Maliki’s style of ‘legal procedure’ is well known and Kobler is now trying to the blame on the victims in advance.

Moreover, Kobler has unduly interfered in the work of the UNHCR, that has nothing to do with him and that he has been prevented from of doing on many previous occasions. This is an intentional disruption of the Refugee Determination Process and the resettlement of the residents.

Kobler has also tried to cover up the urgent security needs in Liberty in a criminal collusion with the Iraqi government and has tried to circumvent the Iraqi government’s obstruction and hindrance of basic security measures necessary for the safety and security of the residents in the past two months.

1.  While the representative of the residents and the UNHCR have reached an agreement for the transfer of first group of residents outside Iraq, Kobler began his letter by saying ‘Thank you for your cooperation with UNHCR last week’, and then blatantly lied that so far ‘only 34 Liberty residents’ are ready for relocation.

The representatives of the residents have stressed in several letters, including those of February 22, 23 and 24, 2013, that:

“Accordingly and in light of the whole background and bearing in mind the blood which was shed in Liberty, the residents by no means want and accept Mr. Kobler’s and UNAMI’s intervention in their refugee status process and their relation with UNHCR whatsoever and do not trust it. We, therefore, shall not answer to any letter from you regarding UNHCR and refugee process.”

2.  Kobler has threatened: “I will ask the UNHCR how to proceed with those residents who are recognized persons in need of international protection, but refuse to go to the interviews.”  This is an implicit threat to arrest and prosecute the refugees, in the way that Maliki would, and reveals Kobler’s complicity with him – a fact that has already been exposed by Tahar Boumedra.

3. Kobler deliberately refuses to explain why two months after the rocket attack and despite all demands and requests, the Iraqi government continues to oppose the return even one protective T-wall out of 17,500 that were removed, and why it opposes the transfer of protective vests, helmets and medical supplies from Ashraf to Liberty and the building of any shelter in Liberty, or its expansion.

Senator Robert Torricelli in his speech at the European Parliament on March 27 reiterated the logical and legitimate demands of Liberty residents for minimum protective provisions, and said: “No helmets, no T-walls, no blast protection, no safety. If I were to say that this room is going to be attacked, and ten of you can leave and the remained will stay and face death, would you? And if you did, what kind of people are you?”

4. In another absurd lie, Kobler writes that Liberty residents refuse to talk to UN monitors and adds: “I wish to emphasize that spitting on our cars and other aggressive behavior against our monitors is unacceptable.”

This is an absolute lie. The residents simply do not talk to Masoud Durrani, who has communicated the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence messages. In the meantime, there has never been an aggressive or insulting behavior against him or any other monitors. This individual went to Liberty on Kobler’s instructions on March 14 for the first time after the February 9 missile attack and in response to the residents’ protest that why one of the wounded was not transferred to Germany before his death, he said sarcastically: “No worries. He will go to heaven!” In this regard, In a letter on the same day to the UN Secretary-General, the residents’ representative wrote: “Does such behavior represent the conduct of a UN observer or a personal staff member of Kobler serving the mullahs’ Gestapo? The Liberty residents informed their representatives inside and outside Iraq that in order to prevent any further deliberate provocation they will no longer talk to this person.”

The residents talk to all UNAMI staff and monitors except the above mentioned individual.  UNAMI’s human rights deputy went to Liberty on March 29 and visited various locations for several hours and spoke with a large number of residents.

5- Another repeated lie by Kobler is that: “I also would like to again ask you not to restrict movement for liberty residents within the camp and allow those residents who wish to leave the camp to do so.”

This is an absolute lie. The National Council of Resistance of Iran stated on March 22 about this issue that Kobler stated in the UN Security Council: “This absurd claim is made despite the fact that since February 2012 until today more than 2,000 of the residents have been interviewed by the UNHCR outside the camp and in private, sometimes as many as 17 times, and UNAMI monitors have had access to everyone and all sites and interviewed them privately. On many occasions they even encouraged the residents to leave the camp and hand themselves over to the Iraqi forces.”

These lies are nothing new. Kobler had previously claimed that residents had used sand paper on their fingers in order to change their fingerprints in interviews with the UNHCR, had littered the garbage across Liberty, and had deliberately punctured sewage tanks!

If Kobler wants to state as truth that people have spat at the monitors’ vehicles, he has to state the date, the time and the names of the mentioned monitors. He will never do that, just as he has failed in the past with respect to similar lies, despite repeated demands of the residents. These foolish lies are only a cover up for blaming the residents and a justification for their massacre.

6.  Kobler has deliberately ignored the trip to Baghdad at the start of the year by Senator Robert Torricelli and Professor Steven Schneebaum, the legal representatives of the residents, concerning the issue of the residents’ movable and immovable property, and their report on that trip.  By so doing, Kobler wants the 100 protectors of property in Ashraf to abandon their property to Iraqi lawyers before they are rushed to the killing field of Liberty.  This only exposes Kobler’s collusion in the project of the theft and expropriation of the residents’ property and starting another bloodbath.  After the February 9 attack, the representatives of residents have repeatedly declared that Kobler intends to eclipse the urgent security issue by bringing up diversionary issues such as the property. The representatives of the residents have declared that they will not discuss the issue of property until the urgent security issue is resolved.

The Iranian resistance considers Kobler’s letter to be a carte blanche for another criminal attack against Ashraf and Liberty residents. Kobler’s 18-month report card has done nothing but facilitate crimes against humanity and the massacre of defenseless refugees, and for this he must face justice.

The issue of refugees and asylum seekers in Ashraf and Liberty are completely under the mandate of UNHCR, and the High Commissioner should remove this responsibility from the politically tainted interference of Kobler, who is in contact with the mullahs’ ambassador in Baghdad.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
April 1, 2013