Scud missiles hit MKO camp in Iraq
BAGHDAD, June 11 (AFP) - Several Scud missiles crashed Thursday into
a military base in Iraq of the People's Mujahedeen, the main armed Iranian
opposition group said, accusing the Tehran regime.
A spokesman for the Mujahedeen said the Scud-B missiles hit the Ashraf
base, 110 kilometres (65 miles) northeast of Baghdad, near the border with
He gave no details of casualties and said damage was being evaluated.
"Several Scuds hit Ashraf base at 8:30 p.m. (1630 GMT) and several
explosions followed," said spokesman Farid Sulaimani.
Mujahedeen leader Massud Rajavi sent an urgent message to UN chief
Kofi Annan calling for "an end to these aggressions."
He accused Iran of violating a Security Council resolution, which ended
the Iran-Iraq war in 1988, by launching missiles, Sulaimani said.
Scuds also landed on the base a few years ago causing material damage.
The group blamed Tehran for that attack.
The missiles struck just hours after six Mujahedeen fighters killed
along with an Iraqi civilian in a truck bombing were laid to rest at the
Both the Baghdad government and the Mujahedeen blamed the Tehran government
for the truck bombing attack.
The seven were blown up Wednesday on the edge of Baghdad in the deadliest
attack on the group inside Iraq since 1986, which also wounded 21 Mujahedeen
combatants and 15 Iraqi civilians.
Six coffins were carried through a packed crowd of Iranian fighters
and Iraqis and into the Ashraf base aboard six vehicles.
Tanks, troop transporters and field guns were lined up along the road
into the camp, 110 kilometres (65 miles) northeast of Baghdad and near
the border with Iran.
A pick-up truck exploded 15 kilometres (nine miles) north of the capital
as the fighters were being bussed to Ashraf camp. An Iraqi on a bus on
the other side of the road was also killed and 15 others hurt.
The pick-up was loaded with almost 200 kilograms (440 pounds) of explosives,
a Mujahedeen munitions expert told AFP.
The group's spokesman blamed "terrorists sent by the Iranian regime"
for the attack, which came two months after the group assassinated a top
general outside his home in Tehran.
The Mujahedeen said in a statement that it "reserves its own right
to respond and its legitimate right to defend its combatants against the
attacks of the clerical regime."
The attack was the 24th by Iranian agents since moderate cleric Mohammad
Khatami was elected Iran's president in May 1997, according to the Mujahedeen,
and the 75th in the last six years.
After the bombing, Rajavi called on the United Nations "to take
urgent measures to halt the crimes of the mullahs outside Iran" and
urged Baghdad to close down the Iranian embassy.
The Mujahedeen, which has been based in Iraq since 1986 and mounts
cross-border raids, regularly accuses Iran of attacks. Two bombs exploded
near its Baghdad headquarters on Saturday, without causing casualties,
At a Baghdad meeting in mid-May, the Mujahedeen leadership set a target
of May 2001 for the overthrow of the Tehran government.
The Mujahedeen's deployment in Iraq, where it has five military bases,
is a key obstacle to a normalisation in ties between Baghdad and Tehran,
which fought a war between 1980 and 1988.