UN puts forward roadmap for relocation of Iranian exiles from camp in Iraq
The roadmap has been designed to address the concerns of both the residents and the Government of Iraq, the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) said in a news release, adding that its roadmap outlines preparations to be made and a “step-by-step approach for the relocation,” which addresses issues such as water and power supply and other humanitarian needs.
“Our commitment is strictly humanitarian: to facilitate a voluntary temporary relocation of residents to Camp Hurriya as a first step of resettlement to countries outside Iraq,” said the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, Mr. Martin Kobler.
Camp Ashraf – made up of several thousand Iranian exiles, many of them members of a group known as the People’s Mojahedeen of Iran – has been one of the main issues dealt with by UNAMI for more than 18 months.
In line with a memorandum of understanding signed in December by the UN and the Iraqi Government to resolve the situation, some two-thirds of the residents, or 2,000 people, were re-located to a temporary transit location near Baghdad known as Camp Hurriya – formerly known as Camp Liberty – where a process to determine refugee status is being carried out by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
To facilitate the remaining moves that will lead to the closure of Camp Ashraf, UNAMI called on the residents “to start the preparations for the next move without delay,” and asked the Government of Iraq “to be generous when it comes to the humanitarian needs of the residents and to continue to seek a peaceful solution to this issue under any circumstances.”