25 May 2013

U.S. plans to move Iranian exile group out of Iraq hit snag

The US State Department's decade-long effort to find a new home for a controversial Iranian opposition group has ground to a near halt only days after the announcement that the exiles had begun moving from Iraq to permanent homes in Europe.


Fourteen members of the Mujahedin Khalq militant group, or MEK, were flown from the outskirts of Baghdad to Albania on May 15, in what was expected to be the first step in the departure of 3,100 members of the group that has long opposed the government of clerics in Tehran and is also at odds with the government of Iraq.

The Marxist-Islamist group, described by some critics as a cult, moved from Iran to Iraq in the early 1980s, and fought with Saddam Hussein against Iran's Islamist government during the Iran-Iraq war. The current Iraqi government views the group with suspicion, and U.S. and United Nations officials have been trying to resettle them abroad since 2003.

LA Times