Saturday, March 05, 2005

The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - SEPEHRRAD Publicly Backs Terrorists

Letters to the Editor - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED: "Iran and Iraq: Sever the tie
The article "Saddam capture seen as aid to ties" (Page 1, Tuesday) clearly reveals Tehran's role in Iraq and its goal to eliminate its most serious opposition force in the region. Our organization has been monitoring the news on the Iranian mojaheddin in Iraq. The Iraqi Governing Council's statement to expel the Mujahideen Khalq sparked a protest by the relatives of Iranian mojaheddin in the United States and leaders of the Iranian-American communities. These protests include nightly candlelight vigils in front of the White House. Although Ambassador L. Paul Bremer said Saturday that the Iranian mojaheddin would not be extradited to Iran, the decision to send them to other countries is still in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
Let us review the mojaheddin's activities in Iraq over the past several months. The Iranian mojaheddin were not party to the recent conflict in Iraq, and they announced that before the beginning of the war. Although they signed a cease-fire agreement with the coalition forces in April, they did not fire a single bullet during the conflict. On May 11, Iranian mojaheddin leaders agreed to disarm and cooperated with the U.S. forces. Gen. Ray Odierno, who managed the disarmament agreement, is on the record saying, "[T]hey have been very supportive of the U.S. through this operation."
It is no secret that Tehran's regime is behind the recent decision of the Iraqi Governing Council to expel the mojaheddin. This decision is politically motivated. The status of the Iranian mojaheddin in Iraq, given the Fourth Geneva Convention and the role of the U.S. forces as the "occupying forces," should not subject them to expulsion. This decision is in contrast to the good will of the Iraqi people as many of their leaders called for reversing the IGC's decision in its press conference in London last week. Tehran's regime has the audacity even to threaten Europe if the Iranian mojaheddin are sent there. Iran's general prosecutor said Sunday that the transfer of mojaheddin will have "many political, economic and security consequences."
President Bush should intervene urgently. Iranian mojaheddin should remain in Iraq, as it is their legal right based on international law. Tehran should not be given a free hand in Iraq.

RAMESH SEPEHRRAD
President
National Committee of Women for Democratic Iran
Washington"