Iran Involved in Raid on Camp Ashraf
Foreignpolicy.com, Dec. 18, 2013
FP Exclusive: U.S. intelligence officials believe Iranian commandos participated in a deadly raid on an Iraqi compound housing the Iranian dissident group Mujahadeen-e Khalq and then spirited seven members of the group back to Iran, FP’s Yochi Dreazen reports.
The raid on Camp Ashraf killed at least 50 members of the MEK, which laid down their weapons at the request of U.S. authorities and in exchange for promises of protection from the U.S. military. Leaders of the MEK claim that Iraqi security forces were behind the attack.
Baghdad has denied that claim, and U.S. officials have concluded that a small number of Iranian paramilitaries from its feared Islamic Revolution Guards Corps helped plan and direct the assault on the camp. Three officials, speaking to FP, said gunmen from two of Tehran’s Iraqi-based proxies, Kitab Hezbollah and Asaib Ahl al-Haq, then carried out the actual attack. Additionally, seven members of the MEK were abducted from Ashraf and taken to Iran, where they haven’t been heard from since. The Iranian involvement in the Ashraf massacre hasn’t been reported before.
“Iraqi soldiers didn’t get in the way of what was happening at Ashraf, but they didn’t do the shooting,” a U.S. official briefed on the intelligence community’s assessment of the attack said in an interview.