BRUSSELS, Feb 2 (KUNA) -- Martin Kobler, Special representative of the UN
Secretary General for Iraq, on Thursday urged the EU Member States to receive
the Camp Ashraf's residents in Iraq as refugees.
"My message goes to the governments of EU Member States because the final
purpose of the whole exercise to move people from one camp to the other for
them to undergo the refugees' status determination is to bring them abroad, "
Kobler told a press conference in Brussels this evening.
"And so far the answer of (EU) Member States to receive the Camp Ashraf's
residents as refugees, once recognised in their host country, was not that
And my appeal goes also to Member States, then at the end once they are
refugees, to take them into their countries and to give them a live and
freedom and liberty in their countries," he added.
Camp Ashraf is a camp of more than 3000 exiled members of the Iranian
People's Mujahedin dissident group , which is located some 60 kilometres
north of Baghdad .
Camp Ashraf was until 2009 under the control of the US military, but has
since been controlled by the Iraqi Government.
On 25 December, the Iraqi Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding
organising the transfer of the Iranian dissidents to a transit location near
Baghdad Airport, Camp Liberty.
It would allow the Iranians to undergo the refugees' status determination
with the assistance of UNHCR.
On his part, Hugues Mingarelli, Managing Director for the Middle East and
Southern Neighbourhood in the EU, stated that the EU High Representative
Catherine Ashton will continue to raise the issue with EU Member States in
order to look to possibilities to relocate some of the residents of Camp
Ashton has called on the Iraqi government to refrain from all violence and
to fully respect the human rights of the camp's residents.
Ambassador Dan Fried, US Special Advisor for Camp Ashraf told the press
conference that people from Camp Ashraf need to be considered individually.
"And to make determinations about any specific individual we need to know
more about them and such information can be obtained only after they moved to
Camp Liberty and participate in the UNHCR status determination process, " he
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