Special Motion. Camp Ashraf in Iraq

first signatory Elisabetta Zamparutti
Considering that:
·       Camp Ashraf in eastern Iraq hosts some 3,500 people belonging to the Iranian resistance. The protection of the camp was handed over in 2009 to the Al-Maliki Government of Iraq by U.S. forces. The lives of its residents is now at risk given that the Iraqi Government, under Iranian pressure, has expressed the intention to close it within this year. Such an intention was publicly announced in more than one occasion by the Iranian foreign minister Ali Akbar Salhei who reiterated his commitment to dismantle the camp by 2011 at a joint press conference with his Iraqi counterpart Hoshyar Zebari held in Baghdad on October 31;
·       serious and fatal intimidating signals to that effect came on July 2009 and again on April 2011 when some armed attacks of Iraqi forces reaped dozens of victims and hundreds of injured among the helpless residents;
·       on September 13, 2011, the United Nations High Commissioner requested that the ultimatum on the closure of the camp be extended so as to grant the status of political refugees to its residents on an individual basis;
·       on November 29, Iraqi forces started building earthworks and erecting buildings in the vicinity of Camp Ashraf in the wake of the steps to be taken ahead of its closure, that is certainly not expected to be peaceful;
·       at present, the closure of camp Ashraf is considered to be an announced tragedy. If refugees were to be dispersed in small groups, the Iraqi and Iranian forces could easily eliminate them in the general indifference. Such a concern has been further worsened after a speech of Struan Stevenson, president of the European Parliament group for relations with Iraq, who reported of a plan of the Iraqi government to transfer the camp residents in the prison of Al-Mothanna in Baghdad, where, according to recent reports, tortures and rapes are committed;
the governing bodies of the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty to call on the Italian government, the international community, the European Union, the United States of America and all other bodies and competent authorities to take immediate action to defer the closure of Camp Ashraf in order to allow the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to identify residents and grant them refugee status with a view to transfer them to third countries and, in the interim period, to ensure proper international protection for camp residents.