US pullout in Iraq will have unintended consequences for refugees

President Obama’s plan to pull us out of Iraq may have deadly consequences for thousands of Iranian dissidents who have sought shelter in Iraq where they were protected by American troops.  

From the New York Times:

And in a remote part of northern Diyala Province, Iraqi soldiers surrounded a refugee camp for Iranian dissidents, Camp Ashraf, blockading food and water to the roughly 3,500 residents there. A spokesman for the dissidents’ group, the People’s Mujahedeen Organization of Iran, said Sunday that only the presence of Americans had prevented an attack on them.


Far to the north, the Iranian refugees at Camp Ashraf have been a renewed source of concern ever since American forces handed over responsibility for the camp’s protection to the Iraqi Army on Jan. 1.

Last Friday, however, Iraqi forces surrounded the camp and cut off supplies, according to Shahin Gobadi, a spokesman for the dissidents, reached by telephone in Paris. Then, on Sunday morning, the refugees resisted an attempt by Iraqi soldiers to enter one of the camp’s buildings, leading to scuffles and beatings of residents that stopped only when American officers there as observers intervened.

“If the Americans leave, you will see a very serious human catastrophe and a massacre in this camp,” said a camp spokesman, Shahriar Kia, who was reached by telephone. So far, though, no one has been seriously injured or killed.

Whew!  Who knew!  If the refugees are killed that won’t look so good for Obama.

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