TIMES Series – By Natalie O’Neill -29 July 2011- Distraught Anglo-Iranians from Barnet joined a mass protest demanding protection of refugees in Iraq yesterday.
Dozens of residents gathered outside the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees office, urging it to help their family and friends living in Camp Ashraf.
Camp Ashraf is occupied by 3,400 members of the Iranian resistance, Peoples of Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI).
The PMOI movement has been based in Iraq since the 1980s and raises awareness of human rights violations in Iran.
It calls for an end to what it refers to as a “two-year-long inhumane siege of Ashraf”, suppressing residents and limiting supplies including medication.
The camp has become an icon of hope for a free democratic Iran but further attacks were reported on April 8, when the Iraqi army shot unarmed civilians, leaving 34 dead and hundreds more injured.
Yesterday’s rally was held on the second anniversary of the 2009 massacre in Camp Ashraf, which left 11 people dead.
Protesters also raised concern about the Iraqi government’s decision to expel members of the PMOI from the country by the end of the year.