AFP – Iraq’s new ambassador to the United States Wednesday repeatedly dodged questions about a mass killing at an Iraqi camp hosting Iranian exiles during his first online Twitter chat since taking up his post in July.
Lukman Faily was bombarded with questions about the whereabouts of seven people now missing from the camp, as well as who was behind the September 1 attack which allegedly left 52 dead.
“We await Prime Minister’s special committee results to be released once full investigation completed #AskIraq,” was his only in reply to a flood of inquiries about the attack.
Iraqi authorities blame in-fighting within the People’s Mujahedeen Organization of Iran for the deaths, and they insist no soldiers entered Camp Ashraf in Diyala province.
But those accounts are sharply contested by the PMOI, which charges that Iraqi forces entered the camp, killed 52 of its members and set fire to the group’s property and goods.
Baghdad has opened a probe into the events surrounding the deaths in the camp.
The UN and Western governments have condemned the bloodshed, but have been careful not to assign blame.
Those left in Camp Ashraf have now been moved to Camp Liberty, a former US military base on the outskirts of Baghdad, which houses some 3,000 members of the group also known as the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK).
The Iranian opposition group fears some seven Iranian exiles arrested at the camp are now on the verge of being extradited back to Iran.
“Why #iraq government holding Geneva protected #campashraf residents as hostage near Baghdad airport?” asked one Twitter user who went by @shahin09.
Others alleged Baghdad was preventing the construction of safety walls around the camp to protect residents, after several attacks this year.
Faily steered clear of answering any other questions about the attack during the hour-long Twitter conversation in which he was also asked about his views on Syria and Iraq’s relationship with the United States.
Iraqi forces massacred the wounded in Camp Ashraf clinic