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EU removes PMOI from terrorist list

Jan. 26, 2009 at 12:04 PM

BRUSSELS, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- European foreign ministers in Brussels Monday agreed on a terrorism list that does not include the People's Mujahedin of Iran based in Iraq's Diyala province.

Milena Vicenova, the Czech envoy to the European Union, said Friday the latest version of the list of terrorist organizations recognized by the European Union was forwarded to ministers without the name of the PMOI. European ministers approved the list Monday.

Maryam Rajavi, the leader of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, the Paris-based political wing of the PMOI, said the decision was a victory for her resistance movement, adding the delisting paved the way for democratic opposition to the clerical regime in Iran.

The Monday decision opens the door for the PMOI to lobby for funds and removes the terrorist label from the 3,500 members of the group living under U.S. military protection at its Iraqi enclave, Camp Ashraf, EUObserver.com reports.

Rajavi said it was now time for the government in Iraq to lift restrictions on Ashraf residents and affirm their status as protected persons under the Fourth Geneva Convention.

The PMOI lobbied the U.S. State Department for delisting in 2008 but was denied in December by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

The PMOI and the NCRI were listed as terrorist organizations for violent opposition to the Iranian regime. The PMOI sided with Saddam Hussein during the bloody Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s.

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