06/21/2006, 00.00
IRAQ - IRAN
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Five million Iraqis against Iranian meddling in their country

The National Council of Resistance of Iran says 5.2 million Iraqis signed a declaration against Tehran's action in their country.

Ashraf (AsiaNews) – Some 5.2 million Iraqis are said to have signed a declaration calling for an end to Iranian meddling in Iraq, something that Iraqi Foreign Minister Hişyar Zêbarî has lately complained about, this according to an announcement by the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an umbrella organisation for 11 parties in exile, the main one being the People's Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI), a group the United States and the European Union included in a list of international terrorist organisations, a designation many political leaders want to see reviewed.

The NCRI's statement was released last Saturday during a demonstration in Ashraf, a town in north-eastern Iraq, organised by the Solidarity Congress of Iraqi People, which is chaired by Abdullah Al-Jabouri, a former governor of Diyala Province.

The statement asserts that "Iran's rulers want to dominate this part of the world and have turned Iraq into a hunting ground and the frontline of their war with the international community. . . . In this geopolitical situation and in this juncture of history, democracy in Iraq and democracy in Iran are interdependent, guaranteeing each other".

The text goes on to say the "solution passes through eviction of the Iranian regime from Iraq and recognition of the status of the PMOI which is the counterbalance to the Iranian regime's interventions. Similarly, their disarmament upset the strategic balance in this sensitive region of the world in favour of the Iranian regime."

The declaration sponsored by 121 political parties and social groups was signed over a four-month period (February-June 2006).

All signatories are over 18 years of age and their names and addresses are available and verified by tribe sheikhs, jurists, lawyers and local trusted dignitaries. They include 700,000 women, 14,000 lawyers and jurists, 19,000 medical doctors, 35,000 engineers, 320 clergymen, 540 university professors, 2,000 tribal sheikhs and trusted local dignitaries and nearly 300 local officials.

Representatives from different provinces presented the number of signatories and tens of thousands of signed pages to international and domestic correspondents reporting for the mass media and the international press.

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