Iraq: 23rd Iranian member of PMOI passes away due to medical siege on Camp Liberty

At 6:30 this morning of January 13, 2015, Ms. Mahin Afzali suffered a heart attack and subsequently lost her life at the Iraqi clinic in Camp Liberty due to cardiac arrest.

Ms. Afzali, born in 1950, was an official of the People’s Mojaheidn Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) with 36 years of struggle against the religious dictatorship ruling Iran. She who had been suffering from heart ailment for a long time became the 23rd patient losing her life due to the anti-human blockade.

Mahin Afzali had political asylum from France; however, as the French government refused to accept its refugees, her name was given in a list dated January 7, 2014 to the Finnish government for resettlement and medical treatment.

In addition, considering her dire conditions, her name was also given in a list of patients to Ms. Jane Holl Lute, Special Adviser to UN Secretary General for Relocation of Camp Hurriya [Camp Liberty] Residents, for hasty resettlement (The April 2014 list, row number 31). Her name also appears in the lists given to the UNHCR (November 2014 and January 2015). Nevertheless, all these referrals were unfruitful.

As such, since 2009 and following the handover of Camp Ashraf protection to Iraqi forces by the United States, twenty-three residents of Ashraf and Liberty have lost their lives to the medical blockade. A number of other patients are also in perilous condition because of this siege.

Had the United States and the United Nations adhered to the quadripartite agreement of August 2012, as well as their other repeated and written commitments on the security and wellbeing of the residents, and forced Government of Iraq to abandon its medical blockade, this loss of life could have been prevented.

The medical blockade is a tool for psychological and physical torture of residents in the hand of the Governmental Committee tasked to suppress Ashraf. While the Iraqi clinic lacks the minimum equipment to handle the emergency cases, it is three years now that Government of Iraq obstructs the transfer of residents’ medical equipment in Ashraf to Liberty which the residents have procured at their own expense.

The daily statements by the National Council of Resistance of Iran, along with the letters and many referrals of residents’ representatives and legal advisors inside Camp Liberty and outside of Iraq are testimony to this fact. Like all residents of Camp Liberty, Ms. Afzali was protected by the Fourth Geneva Convention and under international protection as an refuge.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi offered her condolences on the passing away of Ms. Afzali to Liberty residents, especially her daughter Asefeh Heydaryan, and urged the U.S. government and the United Nations to live up to their commitments on the security and wellbeing of the residents and to take immediate action to end the medical blockade that is a blatant case of crime against humanity.