Last update 11:56:33 AM
In a press conference in Brussels on Wednesday, prominent European politicians, joined by a former Prime Minister of Algeria, announced the formation of a new non-governmental organization with the mission of improving the political and human rights situation in Iraq.
The press conference, chaired by the President of the European Parliament's Delegation for Relations with Iraq, Struan Stevenson, strongly condemned the human rights violations in Iraq, the executions and massacre of Iranian refugees in Camps Ashraf and Liberty, and stressed that the main cause of these problems has been the monopoly of power in Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's hands in the past 8 years and the unprecedented infiltration of Iraq by Iran and its terrorist Qods Force.
The announcement was made after insurgents captured the city of Mosul in Iraq on Tuesday and Tikrit on Wednesday.
The Shiite government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki claims that the attacks have been carried out by terrorist groups, namely the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. But the participants at the press conference disputed this claim vigorously, calling the recent actions part of a popular uprising, which Maliki has been attempting to suppress. They stressed that Maliki has resorted to the indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians with barrel bombs and missile strikes and repeated air attacks on insurgent-held areas, and that these operations are carried out under the command and monitoring of the Quds Force.
At the press conference for the newly formed NGO, the European Iraqi Freedom Association (EIFA), Sid Ahmed Ghozali - former Prime Minister of Algeria, Alejo Vidal-Quadras - Vice President of the European Parliament, Stephen Hughes, Vice-President of the Socialists-Democrats group and former MEP Paulo Casaca, an expert on Iraq, pointed out that Maliki misleadingly pretends that the terrorists and ISIL have taken control of Nineveh province in order to pave the way for bombings and missile attacks as well as to find an excuse for the U.S. and the Iranian regime's military intervention in Iraq.
The participants strongly criticized the support of Western governments, particularly the United States, for Maliki and called for an end to arms shipments to the Maliki government, coming from the US and Russia, which help him to suppress the popular uprising.
Representatives of various Iraqi factions reiterated that recent elections were neither free nor fair and all of them have been defrauded by Maliki and the Iranian regime sinceDecember 2012.
Participants in Wednesday's press conference left no doubt as to the specific goals of their newly formed NGO, noting that "the crisis of Iraq can only be resolved by an urgent change of leadership and the ousting of Maliki, combined with the complete eviction of the Iranian regime from Iraq."
The Board of EIFA includes John Bruton - former Prime Minister of Ireland, Geir Haarde - former Prime Minister of Iceland, Giulio Terzi - former Foreign Minister of Italy, Lord Carlile - former National Security Advisor to the UK Government.
SOURCE European Iraqi Freedom Association
Iran News in Brief - 3 March 2015