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Report on systematic violation of Human Rights in MKO/NCRI Camp Ashraf in Iraq


Source: Centre for Thought, Dialogue and Human Rights in Iran (Sep 10, 2006)


The report is prepared by CTDHR in order to improve human rights in Iran


Based on the documents, and testimonies of some former MKO members and their immediate families, the majority of the residents of Camp Ashraf are denied contact with the outside world and their families are banned from visiting them.  Recently the Iraqi Government does not even issue visas to those families who hope to visit their relatives in this camp.



As a Human Rights Organization we have been working closely with some families whose children are forcibly kept inside the camp and denied the contact with their parents or leave the camp.  In many cases when these families eventually managed to contact their children, they were accompanied by a guard and never alone. For instance, Somaye Mohammdi daughter of Mustafa, was 17 years old when she was taken to Washington, US and then flew to Jordan with a group of youth under the false offer of a month trip to visit Iraq and Jordan.  According to Mustafa Mohammadi, her father, MKO authorities seized Somaye’s travel documents in Jordan and never returned them back to her.  


In 2004, when Somaye Mohammadi , was interviewed by the delegates of the Canadian Embassy from Jordan at Camp Ashraf, at her request (the copy of her letter in Farsi is attached) Mr. Behzad Safari, the person in charge of judiciary of Camp Ashraf, did not leave Somaye alone throughout the interview although he was asked by the Canadian authorities to do so.  Ignoring the fact that the Canadians assured him that there is no need for his presence as they have their own interpreter, Mr. Safari refused to leave and continued monitoring the process that resulted in Someye not being able to speak freely. (A copy of the report by Canadian Embassy is also attached)


In many occasions, these young people are pressured to reject their families and refuse to talk to them out of fear of being labeled as disloyal and agents of the Iranian government and subjected to the routine consequences.


Unfortunately two youths whose name was in the report are dead. The recent case of suicide of Mr. Yaser Akbari Nasab Far, who was a member of MKO and was brought to Iraq form Germany along with his brother, Mossa Akbari Nasab Far, when he was under16, is a clear example of this situation. Yaser, whose numerous requests for leaving the camp/organization have been ignored, finally committed suicide by setting himself on fire sometimes in August 2006.  When the MKO officially announced the incident on September 11, 2006, after over a month delay, they claimed that Yaser took his own life in protest to the conditions caused by the U.S. control of the Ashraf.


In addition to the unjustifiable delay in the release of the news by MKO, regarding Yaser’s death, there are other facts surrounding this situation that should be a matter of serious concern for the Human Rights organizations.


There are other reports about similar situations, suicides, from inside the camp mostly for the same reason of not being able to contact with friends/families and loss of hope about gaining the freedom ever again.  The recent death of Ms. Faezeh Akbarian, 21 year old, that was explained by the MKO as heart attack is an indication of a cover up attempt in the absence of official inquiries.


The system of control hence reward/punish is so ruthless that even in death divides and categorizes the members as “Us” and “Others”. While in the suicide case of Neda Hassani in 2003, when she set herself on fire, to protest the arrest of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi in France, she was called a hero and a true "Mojahed" by MKO, but  the organization refused to publicly acknowledge that Mr. Yaser Akbari Nasab Far being even a member.  These methods are employed in order to discourage the expression of disagreement and desire to leave by the residents of the camp.


As we expressed in the past, systematic violation of Universal Human Rights protocol, especially articles 1, 3, 5,6, 7, 9,10,18, 19,20 and 29, is taking place in this camp that is run with no regards for international laws or accountability on its leadership’s part.  There are countless reports coming out of these camps, especially the American camp a.k.a. TIPF, with indication of all sort of violations that includes names and dates.  Specific incidents include cases of sexual abuse. Yet people do not feel safe to openly testify against the organization and the situation as long as they have to remain there with no protection from United Nations and free countries outside.


There has also been the case of this young Canadian citizen who was forcibly kept in the camp between 2000 and 2004 and was rescued only due to the perseverance of his family.  Recently, when this young man visited Netherlands in the company of his father, he was arrested at the Airport in Amsterdam by the request of the German authorities and spent two days in prison before being deported to Canada.  The reason for this frustrating incident was the fact that MKO used his legal papers, that were confiscated upon his arrival in the camp, to move members in Europe.  This young man was 15 at that time which makes his affiliation with a militant organization against all the International protocols of the Child’s Rights.


This young man was able to provide the names of 90 youngsters who have been taken to Iraq, while under 17 years old. There are also reports that claims around 900 teenagers have been taken to Iraq between 1997-1999.  All the teens were trained for four months in Ashraf for operation inside Iran. So many of them have participated in the military operation inside Iran when they were under 18 years old. 

During training period all their belongings including pictures of their families were confiscated and there was no contact with family members at all.


We, at the C.T.D.H.R., are also in the possession of copies of videos, provided by the families of these kids, that were taken from the parties held for these teenagers by the MKO officials at the nights of their sentence to Iraq from Canada or US.   In one video, that is the goodbye party of Majid Zabeti a14-year-old whose father and mother were killed in Iran in 1982, and his 14 year old friend Mohammad Reza Mohadessin, son of the spokesperson of MKO, you can see all these underage kids being showered by gifts and encouragement from the adult members of the MKO. 


There are more than hundred hours of videos, many pictures and other documents available to support the claims made by our Centre on behalf of these families.


The following names are some of those who were taken to Iraq, while under 18, and the majority of them are willing to leave Iraq:




1. Mustafa (Mohammad) Rajavi, son of the leader of MKO Massoud Rajavi. He has, unsuccessfully, tried to escape Ashraf in 2003.  Mustafa and two other friends took an "Aifa" Truck at night and hit the fence and tried to climb on the roof of the truck to jump over the fence but Mustafa was arrested due to him being under surveillance.


2. Amir Vafa Yaghmaei was a citizen of Sweden. He was able to leave Ashraf after 2 years with help of Swedish government. His father, Mr. Esmaeil Vafa Yaghmaei was so loyal to Mr. Rajavi at NCRI that he ignored several requests by his own son, who was 16 when sent to Iraq, and refused to help him.  Amir was abused inside Ashraf and also in US Camp, TIPF, for almost 2 years.


3. Hanif Nourbaksh, Hanif was 15 years and a citizen of USA who was taken to Iraq in1999. During his first month he claimed, "I am US citizen and want to return to US” which was ignored.  One day he started running naked around the base ( artesh 1) but was caught by Mahmoud Ghaemshahr and Afshin Faraji, Head of the commandos, and beaten in front of many eyewitnesses.  After that frightening incident he kept quiet for a while; then one morning in the holy month of Ramadan of 1999 his voice was heard again as he was screaming under beatings for writing anti Rajavi slogan on the walls of resting area in the camp.  Hanif was sent back to U.S. later that year.


4. Alireza Bagheri (Cartoonist), He was under 16 when sent to camp from Germany. He is still in Iraq and waiting for his release. He was punished two times for his satire. One time he draw a cartoon of Massoud Rajavi on the podium. 

5.  Hooman Mohammadi, currently he is in Sweden since he had Swedish citizenship.

6.  Hanif Emami,   taken from Norway

7.  Reza Chavooshi, taken from Germany

8.  Sian Ghabeli

9.  Ehsan Eghbal, Son of Erfan/ France

10. Taher Eghbal, Son of Erfan/France

11.  Massoud Salami, US

12.  Amir Pakbaz

13. Saeed Pakbaz  (Turkey)

14. Mohammad Baraei

15. Mesbah Taheri

16. Hamid Reza Sanobari

17. Hanif Shahsavandi

18. Sharif Shahsavandi, Son of Shohreh Einoalyaghin

19. Mohammd Satari

20.Yaser Hajian, Germany

21. Amir Nazari

22. Ahmad Haj Ahmadi

23.Yaser Haj Mohammadi

24. Naser Kalhor, Germany

25. Naser Ghafori, Germany

26. Hanif Mojtahed Zade, US

27. Kambiz Dakhah

28. Kamran Dadkhah

29. Ali Kalbi, Germany

30. Mazaher Kalbi, Germany

31. Saeed Sedagahty

32. Masoud Sedaghty

33. Mohsen Momeni, Geramny

34. Mehran Karim Radi

35. Ashakn Rafi, Turkey

36.  Pezhman rafiei, Turkey

37. Ezat Heydari, Turkey

38. Hosein Maleki 

39. Majid Amini (Siavoush Seyfi)

40. Mustafa Mirmohammadi

41. Hamid Gahnbari

42. Mosa Gahnbari

43. Mahmod Gahnbari, Son of Mahin

44. Mossa Emad Zade, Mossa carried the poster of Rajavi in the Football Stadium in Franc during Olympic Football

45. Rozbeh Emad Zade

46. Mehrdad Khoshkalam

47. Alborze Khoshkalam

48. Sadegh Voshagh, Germany

49. Majid Hanif Nezhad

50 . Alireza Asad Zadeh

51. Alireza Hosieni

52. Ezat Heudari, Turkey

53. Majid Anini  

54. Majid Zabeti, Ottawa/Canada

55. Mohammad Reza Mohadesin, Ottawa/Canada

56. Mohamad reza Torabi, Ottawa /Canada

57. Yasser Akbari Nasab Far, He committed suicide in Asharf on August 2006.

58. Mossa Akbari  Nasab Far 




1. Aseye 13 years old who was under the care of " Raziye " in San Francisco, US.  When she was leaving from Washington to go to Iraq she took a bag full of dolls with her.

2. Fereshteh Khalili, 13 years old.  At the time of her departure she was crying and was not willing to leave US.  Her father was killed in Iraq but she was not informed about his death.

3. Elham Kia Manesh, 18 years old US citizen

4. Elham Zanjani, 18 years old Canadian Citizen


Both Elhams were given the task of throwing eggs at President Khatami when he was attending UN meeting.  F.B.I. arrested both and a few other girls. They were released on bail on condition not to leave Washington.  MKO told Elaham M. and Elham Z. that since there is not enough money to hire lawyers for them they better fly to Iraq for a while till the case is dismissed. Elham Zanjani and Elham Kia Manesh both are still in Ashraf and afraid to ask to be sent back to US due to the case and the possibility of prosecution by F.B.I.


6. Somaye Mohammadi, 17 years, daughter of Mustafa Mohammdi .  She was a Canadian immigrant but she lost her status since MKO did not allow her to follow up her citizenship application. Currently Somaye is stateless without any proper documents.

7.  Zoha Soltani,   She was adopted by Mrs. Khanlari. They kept her in Canada

8.  MahVan Etemadi, 16 years Old /Canada

9.  Nadereh Afshar, 15 years old Toronto /Canada/  She was under care by Naghi Shafiei and Mina Eslah

12. Homa                she was with Nadereh    Toronto, Canada

13. Bita, daughter of Safa 14 years old /Canada-

14. Maryam  16 years old taken our from L.A., US.

15. Zolal  ….       17 years old   Washington, D.C.  Zolal was under care oh her aunt who was agisnt MKO decision to take her to Iraq.


The well planned transfer of the teenage girls and boys in 1997-1998 who were mostly sent out of Iraq in 1991, during Persian Gulf War (Kuwait War), for the claimed reason of their safety was against the parents will at the time. The majority of these kids were sent to the EU and North America in 1991 by using false documentation; therefore no legal adaptation process have been followed in any country of destination for these kids. When the kids were decided to return to Iraq, once again, illegal and forged documents were used by the MKO hence no clear traces of these transactions exist.


The unfortunate incident of Yaser Akbari Nasab Far’s suicide is the most recent cry for help,  and also an alarming sign that is coming out of this camp, which is located in the middle of a war zone, in outskirts of Baghdad and operates with total disregard for International or any state laws.


The immediate attention of all the International Humanitarian Organizations is required in order to prevent another tragic incident such as the recent suicides or even bigger catastrophic possibility such as the hand over of all the residents of this camp to the Iranian authorities as publicly announced by the Iraqi government. 


Saeed Soltanpour





CC: UNHRC _ Madam Louis Arbour

       Amnesty International

        International Committee of Red Cross

        Human Right Watch

        UN Secretary General _ Mr. Kofi Annan

        Reporters without Border

        Members of Parliament -Canada




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