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Vigil for Ashraf Residents Across from White House

Ashraf Monitor, Issue 11
November 25, 2008

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Reiterates the Rights of Camp Ashraf Residents

pFriday, November 14, 2008p

UNAMI continued to monitor closely the situation of the People's Mujahedin of Iran members who are living in the Ashraf camp in Diyala Governorate. They are still under the protection of the United States army following an agreement signed in 2004, but the Government of Iraq has expressed its intention to take full control of the camp in the near future. In a letter dated 15 October 2008 to the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Iraq, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights urged the Government of Iraq to protect Ashraf residents from forcible deportation, expulsion or repatriation in violation of the non-refoulement principle, and to refrain from any action that would endanger their life or security. It is also important that the humanitarian needs of the camp's residents, including access to food and medial care, be met by those protecting the camp

From UN Sec. Gen. Ban Ki-moon's latest report to the UN Security Council on the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI)

Iranian Dissident Vigil Moves to White House
Voice of America
November 18, 2008

Iranian demonstrators have begun a vigil outside the White House to prompt a vow of protection for Iranian dissidents in Iraq.

The group ended a two-month vigil outside United Nations headquarters in New York Monday, after the plight of people living in Iraq's Camp Ashraf were addressed by U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

Members of the Mujahedeen Khalq, also known as the People's Mujahedeen, have been living in Iraq since they were expelled by Iran in the 1980's. They disarmed after the U.S. invasion in 2003, and were granted protection under the Geneva Conventions. Many in Camp Ashraf fear that Iraqi authorities may force them to return to Iran, where they say they will be killed.

The head of an Iranian-American human rights group, Nasser Rashidi, of the National Coalition of Pro-Democracy Advocates, told VOA the protesters will stay outside the White House until Washington renews its pledge to protect the camp's citizens…  Read More

Iran fails to halt U.N. assembly rights resolution

November 21, 2008
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Western nations claimed a success on Friday when a U.N. General Assembly resolution condemning human rights violations in Iran passed through a key committee more easily than in the past.

Iran's bid to halt action on the resolution in the assembly's third committee -- meaning it would have been shelved -- was defeated by 81 votes to 71. A similar move on a similar resolution last year was stopped by just one vote.

The committee then passed the resolution by 70 votes to 51, although 60 countries abstained. The resolution goes to the full assembly next month, but diplomats said the outcome was expected to be the same and the key vote was in the committee.

The nonbinding resolution, sponsored mainly by Western countries and put forward by Canada, expresses "deep concern at serious human rights violations" in Iran.

It urges Iran to end alleged torture and cruel punishment of detainees, executions of juveniles, stonings to death, violent repression of women demonstrators, discrimination against ethnic minorities and members of the Baha'i faith, and restrictions on freedom of religion and belief.

"The importance of this resolution is to put the spotlight on Iran's very poor human rights record," British Ambassador John Sawers told reporters...  Read More

Taking a Stand for Ashraf
By Rabbi Daniel M. Zucker
American Chronicle, November 25, 2008

We were assembled on the afternoon of 31 October 2008 at the United Nations Plaza on the 50th day of a vigil to draw the world's attention to a miscarriage of justice—a violation of an agreement—a double-crossing of a partner and ally in the civilized world's war with the barbarity that has been unleashed upon civilization by Khomeinism and those that would apply obscurantist religious law to rule society.


I am referring to the decision of the State Department and the Pentagon directing the coalition forces constituted as the Multi-National Force-Iraq to transfer authority and responsibility for the safety and defense of Camp Ashraf to the Government of Iraq—which unfortunately is currently led by Islamist allies of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the leading progenitor of terrorism on a global scale today. Let me suggest that this would be the political equivalent of turning defense of the canary over to the cat... Read More

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