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Hakim: Americans prevent MKO expulsion from Iraq

Tehran, Nov 11, IRNA - Head of United Iraq Coalition Abdelaziz Hakim says Americans are the main impediment to expulsion of members of the terrorist Mujahideen Khalq Organization (MKO) from Iraq.

"Americans, due to their special attitude towards the (terrorist) MKO outfit, are the main obstacle on the way of expulsion of the grouplet's members from Iraq," Hakim told IRNA in Tehran.

Hakim said from Washington's point of view, the terrorist and criminal MKO members are refugees and on the same ground it has banned their expulsion from Iraq.

He referred to the Iraqi government's decision to expel MKO from Iraq in 2004 which has been opposed by the US and said, "MKO expulsion from Iraq has always been an issue discussed by Iraqi and US officials."

He went on to say that the Iraqi people and government have always been calling for expulsion of the MKO from Iraqi territory due to the crimes they committed against both Iraqi and Iranian nationals during reign of Saddam Hussein but the US prevented their deportation.

As for the Turkey-Iraq standoff over PKK, Hakim said that based on Iraq Constitution, adopted by Iraqi representatives and people, terrorist groups have no right to set up bases in or use Iraqi territory for action against other countries.

He said the region should be cleaned up of such terrorist groups.

"Our Kurdish brethren too have confirmed the law and such an attitude has been welcomed by all Iraqis."

He stressed that the Iraqi government does not wish any act to be taken against its neighbors from its territory.

Turkey has deployed forces in certain parts of its common border with Iraq and we hope there would be no ground for using Turkish military forces in the region, he added.

As for enemy claims that Iran interferes in Iraq's internal affairs, Hakim said the Islamic Republic of Iran in a historical move after fall of Saddam's regime supported the transitional council and Iraqi government.

"Iran's support for the Iraqi nation and government in different junctures has guaranteed stability in the region and the stability is also useful for Iran itself," he noted.

He added that as a big country in the Persian Gulf region, Iran lays an outstanding role there.

On Tehran-Baghdad talks on the 1975 Algiers accord, Hakim said the issue should be raised in an atmosphere full of understanding and friendship.

He said the two countries can talk on the issue under suitable conditions.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Hakim said all the groups forming his coalition agree on establishment of a federal system in southern and central part of Iraq.

He said the issue would be put in referendum and public views would have the first say in that regard.

Iran-US talks on Iraq highly constructive
Tehran, Nov 10, IRNA - Head of United Iraq Coalition (UIC) Seyed Abdelaziz Hakim said on Saturday that Iran-US talks, which indicate Tehran's support for the Iraqi people, have thus far been "highly constructive."

Speaking in an exclusive interview with IRNA, Hakim hoped the next round of talks would be more constructive and more transparent than the previous ones.

He appreciated Iran's endeavors to solve problems facing the Iraqi people and welcomed its initiatives on Iraq in the Istanbul meeting of Iraq neighboring states. He said some clauses of the initiative are positive and the others need further studies.

As for developments in northern Iraq, Hakim said, "We take the side of the Turkish government in that regard and the Iraqi government does not like any problem arising in the region in that connection."

Pointing to some articles of Iraq's constitution which says the Iraqi territory should not used for activities of terrorist groups, Hakim said some Turkish forces are present in certain parts of the country and "we hope there will remain no excuse to be used by Ankara."

On presence of the US troops in Iraq, Hakim said, "The Iraqi people are not the least interested in presence of the forces in their country and we hope conditions will be prepared for speedy withdrawal of foreign forces from Iraqi territory."

More Iranians to be freed soon

Hakim said that more Iranians detained by the US troops in Iraq would be freed soon.

"The US ambassador to Iraq has made promises in that regard and efforts and consultations are underway for release of the remaining diplomats and Iranians who are taken captive in Iraq," Hakim told IRNA.

Two Iranian diplomats kidnapped by the US forces in northern Iraqi city of Arbil in January 2006 were freed on Friday.

He said, "We will follow up the case of other Iranians too. We hope they will be freed too as soon as possible. The Iraqi people and government are of the opinion that those arrested by the US troops should be released as soon as possible and we have asked the US forces to take actions in that connection."

Nine Iranians, jailed by the US forces in Iraq, were released by the US and handed over to Iranian officials through Iraqi authorities on Friday morning.

The nine Iranians, including two diplomats, had been arrested in northern Iraqi city of Arbil in January 2006.

The US says there are still 11 more Iranian nationals in its custody in Iraq, while Iranian officials put the number of remaining captives at 25.

... Payvand News - 11/11/07 ... --

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