About Humanitarian Crisis for
Residents of Camp Ashraf
More than 3,400 members of Iran’s
main opposition, the People’s Mojahedin (PMOI/MEK) and their families, among
them nearly 1,000 Muslim women, reside in Camp Ashraf in Iraq. The PMOI
was the source of ground breaking revelation in the United States in 2002 about
Iran’s two until-then secret nuclear sites at Natanz and Arak.
On July 28-29, 2009, Iraqi forces
ordered directly by Iraq's Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki acting at the behest
of Iran rulers, carried out a violent, unprovoked raid on Camp Ashraf, killing
11 residents, wounding 500, and abducting 36.
The brutal raid on Ashraf was a
blatant violation of the solemn commitment Iraq had given to the United States
that it would provide "humane treatment of the Camp Ashraf residents in
accordance with Iraq’s Constitution, laws, and international obligations."
The assault took place while U.S. service members on the scene were observing
the situation closely. Regrettably they took no action to prevent the
premeditated violence despite direct appeals by Ashraf residents at the outset
and during the attack.
International Humanitarian Law Obligates U.S. to Provide Continued Protection for
Camp Ashraf Residents in Iraq
On July 2, 2004, the United States formally
recognized members of the PMOI in Camp Ashraf as “protected persons” under the
Fourth Geneva Convention.
Both the U.S. and Iraq are parties to all four
1949 Geneva Conventions.
Article 27 of the Fourth Geneva Convention specifies that:
“Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their
persons, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and
practices, and their manners and customs […]”.
Article 45 of the Fourth Geneva Convention specifies that:
“In no circumstances shall a protected person
be transferred to a country where he or she may have reason to fear persecution
for his or her political opinions or religious beliefs.“
United States had legal and moral
obligations and responsibilities under international humanitarian law to protect
these Iranian exiles.
the U.S. Committee for Camp Ashraf Residents:
The U.S. Committee for Camp Ashraf
Residents (USCCAR) was established in December of 2003 by families and relatives
of residents of Camp Ashraf. The purpose of the Committee is to ensure the
safety and security of those Iranians and others living in Camp Ashraf. The
Committee will defend the proposition that the protections of the Fourth Geneva
Convention, as well as of other treaties and customary international law, must
be applied to the Iranians in Iraq. For more information please visit: